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Anticipatory nostalgia and nomadic temporality: a case study of chronocracy in the crypto-colony

Kirtsoglou, Elisabeth (2021) 'Anticipatory nostalgia and nomadic temporality: a case study of chronocracy in the crypto-colony.', in The time of anthropology: studies of contemporary chronopolitics. , pp. 159-186. ASA monographs., 52


This paper expands on the view of Modern Greece as a ‘crypto-colonial’ space (cf. Herzfeld 2002). It offers an alternative reading of the so-called ‘Greek-crisis’, using the lens of chronocracy as developed in the introduction to this volume. An ethnographic engagement with the years of austerity, faced by Greek people since 2010, reveals chronocracy to be a colonial technology with political, moral and epistemic dimensions. Here I argue that chronocracy produces an anticipatory nostalgia: namely, a future-oriented affective state of longing for what has already been accomplished and at once yet to be achieved. I show how anticipatory nostalgia is distributed between relational, material and temporal ecologies. The Greek people, I argue, sustain a nomadic sense of temporality (cf. Deleuze and Guattari 2010), manifested in eclectic connections between time fragments that form provisional temporal assemblages. These are evident in my ethnography in the form of visualities, materialities, discourses and narratives. Nomadic temporality emerges as an expression of temporal agency that both resists and reifies chronocracy and anticipatory nostalgia.

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Publisher statement:This is a book chapter published by Routledge in The time of anthropology: studies of contemporary chronopolitics on 30 December 2020, available online:
Date accepted:No date available
Date deposited:02 December 2020
Date of first online publication:30 December 2020
Date first made open access:29 March 2021

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