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In Memoriam: Konstantinos Karamanlis (1907-1998)

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)  April 23, 2008 marked ten years since the death of Konstantinos Karamanlis, a towering figure of Greek politics whose career spanned much of the latter half of the 20th century. Karamanlis served as prime minister for fourteen years, and ten as President of the Hellenic Republic. He was born in 1907 in Proti, Central Macedonia and studied Law. He entered politics in 1935. His first premiership lasted from 1955-1963. After resigning, he left Greece and remained self-exiled in Paris throughout the military regime (1967-1974). In 1974, the year of restoration of the Greek democracy, Karamanlis returned to Greece and founded the New Democracy party. His second premiership (1974-1980) was marked by the signing of the full treaty of accession to the European Economic Community (EEC) in 1979. Karamanlis’ vision became a reality on January 1st 1981, when Greece became the tenth member of the EEC. Karamanlis crowned his political career serving two tenures as President of the Hellenic Rebublic (1980-1985 and 1990-1995). He passed away on April 23 1998 aged 91. Today, the annual memorial service was held at the Konstantinos G. Karamanlis Foundation. Prime Minister and nephew of the Statesman Kostas Karamanlis attended the service.  

The Konstantinos G. Karamanlis Foundation: Konstantinos Karamanlis- Biography from the audio-visual collection of the archive ; The New York Times: Constantine Caramanlis Is Dead at 91; BBC News: Greece’s Karamanlis Dies; C. M. Woodhouse, Karamanlis: The Restorer of Greek Democracy. New York: Oxford, 1982  

Enhancing Democracy

Two Institutes are linked to the life and work of Konstantinos Karamanlis: 

The Konstantinos G. Karamanlis Foundation was established in 1983 upon the initiative of Constantinos  Tsatsos, Konstantinos Trypanis and Konstantinos Svolopoulos. The three men proposed the establishment of an institution which would ensure the preservation of historical memory and the facilitation of the scientific research. Konstantinos Karamanlis agreed and entrusted his political archive to a non-profit Foundation to bear his name, a pioneering act followed by other Greek politicians. According to his own wish, Konstantinos Karamanlis was interred in the grounds of the Foundation on  April 24 1998. The Foundation holds a valuable collection of archives in written and audiovisual material, as well as a well equipped library, where information concerning the history of Greece during the 20th century can be sought. 

The Konstantinos Karamanlis Institute for Democracy is a non profit organization founded in 1998 aimed at examining and analysing social, political and economic issues. It is considerded to be the New Democracy party main think tank. The Institute distinguishes itself in organising workshops, conferences and cultural events. 

Karamanlis Chair at Tufts University

The Constantine Karamanlis Chair in Hellenic and Southeastern European Studies at Tufts University, US, aims at promoting the study and research of Greece, and more generally at raising awareness and familiarity with its political, economic and cultural relationship to its European and Mediterranean contexts. The Chair brings distinguished scholars to The Fletcher School and the Tufts University community, encouraging a renewed focus on modern Greece, the Mediterranean, and the European Union and the crucial role these regions play in world politics.

Tufts University, The Fletcher School: Karamanlis Chair Working Papers; Current Chair Holder: Kostas A. Lavdas; Reading Greece: Modern Greek Studies Worldwide 

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