My name is George Iordanou. Welcome to my personal website, whose only ambition is to serve as a repository for stuff I’ve written over the years.
The life of this “project” started back in 2004 and was initially hosted on LiveJournal. A few years later, towards the end of 2006, I migrated all of my content to a personal domain, iordanou.org, which I use to this day. As I was born in 1986, some of the content dates back to my teenage years. If you are to dig into the archive, please be mindful that some entries were written from the angle of a teenage boy who was trying to figure out the world. I haven’t succeeded yet.
In the in-between period, I graduated from the GC School of Careers in 2005 and went on to study Politics and International Relations at the University of Southampton from where I graduated in 2010 (First Grade, best undergraduate dissertation). The dissertation was on Plato and political disobedience. It was during my undergraduate years that I realised that I like political theory and that I’m quite good at being analytic whilst dealing with abstract concepts.
This is why I then proceeded with a Master’s Degree in Political Theory at the Government Department of the London School of Economic and Political Science (LSE). This was possibly the most intellectually stimulating year of my life. Interestingly, it was also when I realised that traditional political theory, with idealised worlds designed to test and develop theories, was not for me. At LSE I realised that, while I thoroughly enjoyed political theory and absolutely respected the brilliance of the main actors in the field, I was more interested in applying political theory in the real world. The domain of multiculturalism and the whole discussions coming out of the late 90s and early 2000s on how to be a citizen in diverse western state was the perfect field. I thus decided to write a Master’s dissertation on this, which then expanded into a PhD.
I knew I wanted to do a PhD about a week into my undergraduate studies. Towards the end of my Master’s I applied to funded PhD programmes, realising that it was the only way I could actually afford a PhD (not being a trust fund child is certainly not ideal). This is how I ended on a lovely 3-year journey at the Department of Politics and International Studies of the University of Warwick, writing a political theory thesis on multicultural citizenship, using Cyprus as a real world case-study. The PhD was funded by a full scholarship from the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) of the UK under the pathway Security, Conflict and Justice. I also received funding from the A. G. Leventis Foundation and by ERASMUS.
During my time in the UK, I lived in many places, most notably Southampton, London, Coventry, as well as Sheffield and Cambridge where Sunshine studied for her Master’s and PhD degrees. Having experienced British academia and seen how many of our colleagues spent 10-15 years well into their forties chasing after funding bodies for yet another post-doc and grant, we were reluctant to pursue that trajectory, realising that the longer we stayed in academia the less employable we were becoming.
On the same week as my PhD exam (“viva”), I received a job offer from a big humanitarian organization. The downside was that the job was in Cyprus, while I was quite comfortable with my life in the UK. We nevertheless swiftly decided to move back, without giving it too much of a thought. Sunshine was eager to return anyway. A few years later I’m still working at the same place on a totally different domain – life is full of surprises.
Cyprus has not been that bad. I got to grips with the anarchy in the road, the prevailing corruption and the general lawlessness. In the meantime, Sunshine and I got married and had a lovely child, Johnny, who is the subject of my Fatherhood Diaries.
Upon our return we had to adjust our lives given the limited options available in Cyprus. Initially, I was going to every seminar and every talk available, I participated in many demonstrations for the causes I support (i.e. mostly in relation to the reunification of Cyprus, labour rights, and so on) and generally tried to stay an active citizen. While I still attend many of these events, I am much more selective. The excess time is now dedicated to cycling, which is a hobby I picked up soon upon my return to Cyprus, which, as with everything I like, I pursue to the extreme.
If you want to find out more about me or generally contact me, feel free to drop me an email or contact me on twitter @iordanou. In the meantime, read my blog, available in both English and Greek, as well as my most recent project the Fatherhood Diaries.