Alexandra Patrikiou has studied history and European studies in Crete, Athens and London. Currently she is a Ph.D. student at the Department of History and Political Science, Panteion University in Athens (holder of the State Scholarship for Contemporary History since 2006). The provisional title of her thesis is “Representations of the Old Continent.” The discussions for European unification in Greece (1941-46).”
This paper aims to put side by side two sets of perceptions regarding the Old Continent, as presented in the Greek setting during the Axis occupation; the one of the Quisling governments, the other of governments-in-exile. The Quisling governments employed the concept of the Axis’ ‘New Europe’ as a justification for collaborating with the Germans. As for the governments-in-exile, they perceived “New Europe”, in the sense of post-war Europe, as part of a wider scheme and fragmented into smaller geographical entities (Balkans, East, West, etc.). The juxtaposition of these two sets of perceptions disclose apparent and striking differences, and –interestingly enough– similarities as well. The existence of similarities suggests that pro-unification thinking constitutes a consequence of the experiences of war and part of the expectations of its aftermath.