Living conditions of the population

Within the framework of development, the basic inequalities between the centre and the countryside, and within the bourgeois centres of the capital itself, became firmly established, with particularly unfavourable consequences for the newly arrived refugees. Saturation of the job market and especially the practical problems of settlement forced a large number of them to the fringes of big cities and led to their gradual proletarianization. Living conditions became exceptionally difficult for the large majority of the population. At the same time, in the countryside and the smaller urban centres the system of favouritism continued, reflecting the individualistic values of farmers and small owners. Internal migration and the shift to urban centres were the alternatives for rural populations that wished to survive. The capital developed into a huge housing complex that exceeded one million inhabitants in the 1930s, while its primacy in the Greek urban network was enhanced. Local societies - especially in the case of 'new countries' (Macedonia and Thrace) faced special problems during the process of their integration into the national state. The Regime of the Fourth of August, despite its rhetoric, failed to improve the living conditions of the rural classes, as the largest part of the state budget was intended for equipment programmes and state propaganda.