Giannoulidou Emmanouela

La Trobe University, Melbourne

The third side of Civil War: in Nikos Kazantzakis’ The Fratricides


When it comes to civil war, there is a general assumption or a common misconception that it refers to an internal conflict between two different sides. It is unrealistic to believe that an entire population of a country adhered solely to either one or the other. Despite the abundance of research conducted on the topic, there is little or no evidence of the existence of a third side. This research brings to the surface a hidden, silenced, unrecognised and oppressed third side in the context of the Greek Civil War through the study of Nikos Kazantzakis’ The Fratricides (1963). This paper establishes a definition of the third side as it emerges through the text and explains the reason for approaching this topic within the field of literature rather than that of history.  The analysis of the novel brings forth Kazantzakis’ critique of the conflict; particularly his repulsion towards the idea that Greece endured an extremely violent civil war in the name of political ideology. Lastly, this research aims to showcase not only the existence of the third side but also to recognise its dominance in the Greek Civil War and perhaps lay the foundation for further exploration and use of the term within the same or different contexts.


 Emmanouela Giannoulidou is a current PhD candidate in Greek and Spanish Studies at La Trobe University, supervised by Dr Stephie Nikoloudis and Dr José Luis Fernández Castillo. In 2021, Emmanouela completed her MA in comparative literature in Modern Greek and Spanish and in 2020, she submitted her Honours thesis for which she received the Fifis Award for Excellence in Honours in Greek Studies and the Allan Martin Prize for Best Interdisciplinary Thesis in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences. While conducting her research under an RTP Scholarship at La Trobe University, Emmanouela is also working as a Greek language teacher and an Archivist at the Dardalis Archives of the Hellenic Diaspora.