- We interviewed nine people of Greek heritage to learn about what types of superstitions they have heard about or seen others practice. Some of them were interviewed face to face at Dartmouth, but for some of the informants at other places we instead used FaceTime to interview them. Many of the informants are college students or parents, all of which either born in Greece or having family descending from Greece. We asked our informants about their background and heritage, like where they were born, if their parents were born in Greece, if they still have relative in Greece, if they speak Greek in their house, and if they observe Greek customs and traditions. We then asked what types of superstitions they have heard, who they heard it from, and in what context they are used. Finally, we asked if they believe there is value in the superstitions and also carry them out. Many of those, regardless of where they were born and raised in Greece or America, observe multiple superstitions. They are often learned from the older generation, typically from their grandparents but sometimes parents or aunts and uncles, then passed down throughout the family. One of the most popular superstitions is the Evil Eye, but there are many others, some of which are seen in cultures outside of Greece as well. We found that the older generations tend to believe in the superstitions more strongly while carrying them out, compared to the younger generations that learned from their parents or grandparents and perform or observe them but do not believe they really have any power.
- George Spanos– Interviewed in person
- Vungelia Glyptis– Interviewed over FaceTime
- David Lilla– Interviewed over FaceTime
- Ally Stone– Interviewed over FaceTime
- Mary Wallenmeyer– Interviewed over FaceTime
- Lia Constantine– Interviewed in person
- Katie Spanos– Interviewed in person
- Judith Varlamos– Interviewed over FaceTime
- Billy Kosmidis– Interviewed over FaceTime
- Evil Eye
- Indicator of the Evil Eye
- Evil Eye Prevention
- Evil Eye Cure
- Spitting to Keep the Devil Away
- Pomegranate Smashing
- Bride Leaving the Home
- Saint Anthony
- Reading Coffee Grinds
- Knife Passing
- Taking the Trash Out
- Stepping Over People
- Entering and Exiting Rooms
- Needle and Thread during Pregnancy
- Red and Pregnancy
- Pomegranates and Fertility
- Gambling on New Year’s Eve
- 💡 Carmen Braceras
- Katie Spanos
- Jess Valvano
- Ellen Pattinson
- Carmen Braceras– Conducted interviews of George Spanos, Vungelia Glyptis, and David Lilla. Published “Evil Eye,” “Indicator of the Evil Eye,” “Evil Eye Prevention,” “Evil Eye Cure,” and “Spitting to Keep the Devil Away” webpages.
- Katie Spanos– Conducted interviews of George Spanos, Ally Stone, and Mary Wallenmeyer. Published “Vasilopita,” “Pomegranate Smashing,” “Bride Leaving the Home,” “Saint Anthony,” and “Reading Coffee Grinds” webpages.
- Jess Valvano– Conducted interviews of Lia Constantine and Katie Spanos. Published “Knife Passing,” “Taking the Trash Out,” “Stepping Over People,” and “Entering and Exiting Rooms” webpages.
- Ellen Pattinson– Conducted interviews of Judith Varlamos and Billy Kosmidis. Published “Needle and Thread during Pregnancy,” “Red and Pregnancy,” “Pomegranates and Fertility,” and “Gambling on New Year’s Eve” webpages.
We all collaborated on making the powerpoint presentation and on making this cover page for our website.
- Greek Culture, Superstitions, Customary Folklore, Sign Superstitions, Magic Superstitions, Contagious Magic, Evil Eye, Walking, Pregnancy, New Year’s Eve