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Shadows of Olive Trees

It is important for a society to be able to reflect on past issues that affect our social structure today. Shadows of Olive Trees brings to light the customs and traditions that were prevalent in Australia during the 70’s. Migrant families brought their village values and expectations to the new country.  

For many young Greek women, life was filled with compromise and confusion. Raised with love and total commitment, they began to experience the “other way of living.”  These women then began to challenge basic structures of family life.

In Shadows of Olive Trees, we follow the life of Tessa. She is a very smart young lady who knows where her strengths lie and which directions she wants to take in the future. Her father wants her to become a Librarian, but Tessa wants to study literature, continue to study and write poetry.

She is approaching the marriageable age and again her father has chosen two men as suitable husbands. From being the adoring and dutiful daughter, Tessa becomes angry and saddened by her mother’s submissiveness and her father’s domination.

Shadows of the Olive Trees is set in Sydney, in the 1970’s, but it could be replicated in any part of Australia. Today, when some Greek women look back at their youth, they are reminded of how loved and protected they were, but also how confined and limited they were socially. Today, many things have changed. Those same women had to fight so much harder for their freedom but ensured that things would be easier for their children.

This is just one rung on the ladder of women’s struggle for equality, but an important one to acknowledge.

Author Susanne Gervay
Publisher Flying Elephant Media (FEM)
ISBN 9780733603815
Distributor Flying Elephant Media (FEM)
Released Reprint. 2021