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James Prineas

April 2006

The Fruits of a Website

Although we can tell how many people are visiting our website (36 000 in 2005), how many pages they are viewing (1.4 million since 2003) and which pages are most popular, it is hard to tell if the site is really helping a lot of people become more interested in Kythera. The guest book comments by many visitors give us an inkling of it, and occasionally projects result from people visiting the site. Recently two such projects have come to fruition.

Kristina Williamson, a young American photographer, saw the site back in 2003 and contacted some of us via Kythera-Family.net’s email system. She had been researching Kythera and became interested in what she saw of the island online. Utilising information gathered from Kythera-Family.net she applied for a Fulbright Grant to spend a year on the island documenting which aspects of traditional life remain in practice and in what ways the island is changing. The grant came through and she arrived in August of 2004 and, at the end of a year of Kythera had an outstanding exhibition as part of the Kythera Photographic Encounters event under the auspices of the Kytherian Cultural Association. Now Kristina has uploaded dozens of pictures from the exhibition to Kythera-Family.net. They magnificently document everything from the timeless beauty of an olive grove in soft autumn light, the radiance of the elderly Stavroula Magoula of Perlegianika selecting tomatoes in her kitchen, to the semi-legal hobby of making Tsipura (schnapps) in commercial quantities on the fringes of Aloizianika.
Another project with its roots in Kythera-Family.net is Peter Prineas’ new book “Katesehamos and the Great Idea” which relates the lives and struggles of Kytherian Greek immigrants to Australia in the early twentieth century, including the fascinating Roxy Theatre story. The book explores this turbulent era in Greek and Australian history through the experiences of Peter Prineas' grandfather Peter Feros and his contemporaries. Peter first discovered the background to the story on Kythera-Family.net in the Ph.D-thesis work of Kevin Cork, which had been tracked down and posted to the site by our collator extraordinaire George Poulos.*

These first-class documentations of Kytherian culture are just further foundation stones in our efforts to preserve and publicise diverse aspects of Kytherian life on and off Kythera. Any visitor to our site, whether inquisitive school-child, nostalgic retiree, or researching PHD-student, can discover the facets of Kythera they are looking for.
James Prineas, Berlin. ( [email protected] )

*For those of you in Sydney the book will be launched by ex-premier Bob Carr on Wednesday April 12, 2006 at 7.00 pm at “Alexanders On The Park”, 175 Liverpool Street, Sydney, opposite Hyde Park.

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