A proposal from Evaggelos Vallianatos

There are practical things we can do: Donate books for a public library.

Greece, regrettably, has very few public libraries, especially in the countryside. My own village in Kephalonia has a small building for a public library without a single book in the building. I remember in my high school the only books were in the Principal’s office and those of us who liked books had to buy them.

  • Each of us can donate, say, five or ten books in English or Greek to a central office set up by HEC management -or-
  • Send HEC the equivalent in money, for example, $ 100.
  • HEC then would donate the books / money to an existing small public library on our behalf.

    If such effort succeeds, we can institutionalize it.

    Background and Purpose: We have our PhDs primarily because of books. All or nearly all of human knowledge is in books, the standards of culture and civilization. We are very connected to books because books as we know are primarily the legacy of our ancient ancestors. The Greek Library of Alexandria dated around late fourth century BCE was for several centuries the greatest library in both Greece and the world. Third, the Renaissance of the fifteenth century was born from the rediscovery of ancient Greek and Roman texts. These texts published became our modern books and gave birth to our science, making our world. The Turkish occupation of Greece in 1453 cut off Greece from Western Europe and the Renaissance. As a result Greece is still trying to catch up with her Western neighbors, even in matters of culture, including books. We have an obligation to donate books to establish public libraries in the country of our birth. That way we show our sincerity and willingness to do our part in the revitalization of Greece, helping her to have her own Renaissance.

    Books for Libraries donations go to a specific collections bucket to be used ONLY for that purpose.
    Your donation is tax deductible as per US IRS code 501(3)(c) non-profit organizations.