John Mulgan and the Greek Left

John Mulgan and the Greek Left

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In September 1943, New Zealand writer John Mulgan was parachuted by the British Special Services (SOE) into remote mountain terrain in the centre of Nazi-occupied Greece, where he worked with the left-wing resistance to facilitate some of WW2’s most successful episodes of guerrilla warfare. This experience shaped his leftist politics in critical ways, but with the Cold War climate taking over, Mulgan’s allegiance was torn between the andartes he fought alongside and the British command he served under. Found dead in his Cairo hotel room shortly after leaving Greece, Mulgan left many questions about his tragically shortened life unanswered­.

Drawing on extensive new research, including much Greek scholarship, as well as close readings of Mulgan’s own writings, this detailed investigation revises the political canvas of wartime and post-war Greece and provides new insight into Mulgan’s activities and contacts – including the identity of the mysterious woman he was with on the night he died – bringing us a much fuller understanding of Mulgan, one in which his ‘intimate acquaintance’ with the Greek left is proved to have been profound and enduring.

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Tags: Biography