From the Years of Utopia to the Years of Dystopia (Savas Patsalidis & Anna Stavrakopoulou, in: The Geographies of Contemporary Greek Theatre)

The problem with periodization, in any field, is to decide on what basis to establish the boundaries between one period and the next. There are no rules. Different nations and cultures have different models of periodization because they experience history and understand culture in a different way. Some may choose as their organizing principle an influential ruling figure (i.e. Queen Elizabeth, Queen Victoria, Napoleon) or a ruling elite (i.e. the Meiji Era in Japan); others a significant cultural or an economic event (the Agrarian Revolution, the Industrial Revolution, the Depression Years—the 1930s in the U.S.A.), others a religious reform (Luther), others a national trauma (the Holocaust) or decimal numbering systems (fin de siecle, the 1960s, etc.).