21 / 2005
Marinka Skrt


The treatise deals with Slovene women who immigrated to Greece because of marriage. The author attempts to present emigrant women that migrated singly not knowing one of another. The reasons for leaving were entirely personal, that is marriage with a Greek; they were not of political or economic nature. Only those immigrants that moved to Greece and remained there were included in the study. Their initial impressions about Greece were idealistic but as soon as they began living in the new environment, disagreements between the immigrants and the husband’s families arose as well as with the wider Greek environment. Slovene women did not understand their customs and consequently they were not acting in accordance with the rules, and the Greek society did not understand and tolerate their conduct. In Greek society, their status was ambivalent. On the one hand they were critical towards them and therefore rapidly disapproved of their behaviour and on the other Slovene women were allowed a different conduct (more Slovene) or were forgiven and allowed some things because they were strangers. Despite all mentioned Slovene women had to conform to the Greek way of life and to new customs. Some of the customs such as those regarding Easter, social life and food, enriched their style of life while they accepted other habits by necessity; some customs they did not accept and persisted with their own (Slovene) ones. With years, they became similar to the Greeks, absorbed their way of communication, socialising and behaviour, took over some customs yet despite all mentioned distinctions preserved. Different was their style of communication, of conduct as well, and above all the mentality. That connected them with Slovenes and that is why they still feel Slovenes. Slovene women in Greece gradually acquainted with one another. Even a formal society of the Greek-Slovene friendship was established. Meetings were for them a form of sociability and as well of mutual solidarity as they exchanged experiences, had conversations in Slovene language and helped one another. The majority have preserved knowledge of Slovene language as at home they spoke Slovene with their children, some even with their husbands. They preserved contacts with Slovenia – with their families and friends with the help of correspondence and yearly visiting.