Vasileios Papavasileiou, Yota Xanthacou, Eleni Nikolaou, Nikos Andreadakis, Dimitrios Matzanos, Agapitos Xanthis, Maria Kaila


This research paper aims to study the function of the traditional festivals on the island of Rhodes during the period of the COVID-19 pandemic in order to explore community members and official institution representatives’ views on their psychological and socio-economic consequences. A structured interview was designed, which was given online to 168 subjects, of which 96 community members in the villages of the island of Rhodes and to 72 official institutions, representatives of cultural and local authorities, within the context of the beginning of the festivities with some restrictions, in August 2021, in the light of the pandemic. The results of the research show that the majority of community members and official institution representatives of the sample emphasize the communicative, cultural, recreational, and social dimensions of the festivals, however, some claim that there are no longer events that arise interest. Regarding their cancellation during the pandemic period, the majority of community members answer that the entertainment - communication sector was most affected, while the representatives of the institutions emphasize the economic consequences. In general, regarding the consequences of the pandemic on the behavior and psychology of individuals, introversion, isolation, antisociality, belligerence, tension and nervousness, are emphasized, while mistrust seems to prevail even in close family settings. Moreover, the majority of community members and representatives emphasize that social offer and solidarity are not exhibited to a satisfactory degree, while volunteering activities are limited. Regarding the pandemic, vaccination is suggested as the most effective means, mainly by the official institution representatives. Regarding the events of 2021 that shocked them most, the community members focus on economic, social and psychological - personal problems, while the official institution representatives focus on environmental and economic problems. Finally, most of them state that they do not want the transformation of festivals, however, they regard the emphasis on tradition as a sustainable perspective of local festivals.


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