stranger


> ξένος-η-ο


Somebody or something that is not mine, that does not belong to me. Somebody that is not a citizen of the country where he lives. Somebody that crosses the border, a “dangerous border crossers”, (Guillermo Gomez-Peña.) Derivatives: η ξενιτιά, τα ξένα: the foreign land, but also the exile; ξενίτης: the stranger wherever in the world. The word appears in traditional songs, f.e: "Ξενίτης and peddler", or "If they (the girls) do not want to cry, they should not marry with a Ξενίτης". ξένιος, -α, -ο: somebody who hosts somebody else. ξενία: φιλοξενία. ξενίζω: to host, to receive somebody, but also to look strange, to cause surprise. ξένος, -η: Somebody that can cause surprise, that cannot pass imperceptible, that his way to be is strange for the others involuntarily attracts their gaze, transforms him into spectacle. Somebody that at the same time is enchained with his provenance and free in the new "terra incognita". In her poetry book Estado de Exilio (Situation of Exile), Cristina Peri Rossi writes: Mi ignorancia de la nomenclatura/ me permite bautizar con otros nombres/ Mi ajenidad/ Es la ciudadania universal de los suenos (My ignorance of the nomenclature/ allows me to baptise with other names/ being a stranger/ I have the universal citizenship of the dreams).

Author and translator: Marios Hatziprokopiou