The Greeks are modernising The renegotation of gender roles in marriages
during their stay in Canada. «Greeks go modern
in Marriages», Montreal Daily Star, 26/10/1965. Source: Canadian Press
“Let me slowly change”
A man, married to a French-Canadian woman, reports that he initially adopted
the Greek mindset as regards to gender issues, but in time he changed opinions
G.Α.: Thank God… eh… I consider my wife very strong.
She’s very strong. Eeh… I was into sports, hunting. You know. Eh… She was very
patient with me. Eeh… I… I was tough in… in Greek like the old Greeks. Eeh…
that’s how it’s going to be. This is the way. Like that… And many times here…
And I used to tell her: Please, Violeta. Don’t try to change me. Let me change
little by little. And today, I’m into the… the English… normally as the
Canadians, we’ve entered… normally, that is. And in many instances, I remember
it and laugh, because… we were so tough in some cases, which… were nothing…
Res.: For example?
G.Α.: Do you understand? For example. Eeh… I had four
sisters and one brother. There were six of us. Alright? Back then, the girls…
they couldn’t smoke, they couldn’t wear trousers. You understand? I want to
tell you. Eeh… We had to go somewhere with my sisters, they couldn’t order.
I’d be the one to order. That is, the woman was always a bit… lower. And we…
we upheld this a lot. Eeh… to go out with a man back then was… What are you
talking about? There would be… there would be a battle, as they say. Yes. All
these now I remember and I’m saying… what made us be so tough with the… for
the girl not to embarrass the family, not to do that. Aah… I consider it good,
yes, but… all in moderation. You understand? We were eh… the parents would
force her to marry not the one whom she loved, but the one who possessed a
lot. Without asking themselves: My child, is she going to have a good life?
Understand? These things I saw. Such things eh… I’ve understood them, I’ve
comprehended them and I see… in many cases we were, that’s how it should be
done. This was it. But in many cases, we were… very wrong. Understand? And
the… That’s why I’m telling you. Little by little I was trying with my wife...
We were going out with my wife, we were going somewhere. Eeh… back then they
had the clubs. We were going somewhere to drink. I’m going to order, I used to
say. That is… the Greek, as we say. These things I’ve understood, I’ve
comprehended. That’s why in many instances I laugh by myself and I say… we
didn’t know what it was eeh… it was a witticism, it was the system which we