To read this content please select one of the options below:

Persephonic Rhythms and the Seasonal Urbanisation of Island Space: Tourism and Migration in Lesvos, Greece


ISBN: 978-1-83909-973-1, eISBN: 978-1-83909-972-4

Publication date: 26 November 2021


The purpose of this chapter is to showcase rhythmanalysis as methodology for the field of island studies. Islands maintain urban qualities that occur seasonally or intermittently with the mass arrival of tourists. On the Greek island of Lesvos, the focus of this chapter, the expansion of the tourist population brings with it the increase of events and activities such as concerts, art shows, sports and the multiplication of social venues including bars, cafes and restaurants that are typical of cities. Lesvos has become well-known as ground zero to the European Union (EU) refugee crisis. This chapter also considers how the influx of migrants contributes to the rhythm of intermittent urbanisation on the island. To ground my analysis, I relate these forms of visitations to the myth of Persephone. The application of rhythmanalysis for articulating the social conditions of Lesvos, and potentially islands, includes bringing together historical, geo-political and ideological cadences. In the case of Lesvos, Greece's historic peripheralisation socially and economically in Europe shapes northern European tourism and the EU's lack of accountability towards the immigration crisis on its eastern borders. The application of rhythmanalysis holds potential not only for island studies but also for evaluating regional geo-politics and for considering how some spaces oscillate between urbanness and rurality.




The author recognises the Fulbright US Scholar Program (Greece) for supporting some of the research appearing in the chapter and appreciates the generous granting of interviews by participants.


Karides, M. (2021), "Persephonic Rhythms and the Seasonal Urbanisation of Island Space: Tourism and Migration in Lesvos, Greece", Lyon, D. (Ed.) Rhythmanalysis (Research in Urban Sociology, Vol. 17), Emerald Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 189-205.



Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2022 by Emerald Publishing Limited