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What’s going on in Greece? Let Quartz explain…

Demonstrators shout slogans during an anti-austerity rally in Syntagma Square in Athens, Greece.
Reuters/Alkis Konstantinidis
What's all this, then?
  • Jason Karaian
By Jason Karaian

Global finance and economics editor

Published Last updated on This article is more than 2 years old.

The news from Athens is coming thick and fast. Greek voters comprehensively rejected a bailout proposal from creditors yesterday (July 5), setting the stage for yet another showdown between the government and its creditors. Greece’s membership in the euro zone, and the fate of its economy in general, hangs in the balance.

If you’re not sure what all that means, read on—we’re here to help. Glued to Greece’s bailout saga, Quartz has compiled a handy rundown of some key pieces to get you up to speed on all the ins and outs.

How did Greece get in such big trouble in the first place?

It was a long time coming:
The complete history of the Greek debt drama in charts

It’s all because people don’t pay their taxes, right?

Not exclusively, but that is indeed a big problem:
Yes, Greece has a serious tax evasion problem

So what’s up with this referendum I keep hearing about?

It was a high-stakes gamble by the prime minister…
Everything you need to know about this unfolding Greek tragedy

…and it paid off for him. Or did it?
Greece votes “no”—absolutely no one knows what comes next

But now all the banks are closed? How did that happen?

Put simply, they’re almost out of money…
This is what a dying banking system looks like

…so they had to shut their doors, possibly for a very long time:
Do capital controls ever work? Asking for a (Greek) friend

Will Greece ever repay its debts?

Probably not. The IMF basically gave up hope last week:
The IMF has made an obvious point about Greece’s huge debt. Here’s why it still matters

How bad can it get?

Greece might leave the euro zone and start printing drachmas again…
How does a Grexit happen?

…which would make things even worse than they already are:
Think Greece is better off ditching the euro? Read this first

What happened to that tough-looking guy with the motorcycle?

Finance minister Yanis Varoufakis? He quit today, having outlived his usefulness as the government’s “bad cop”:
Feisty finance minister Yanis Varoufakis was right about Greece’s debt—and people hated him for it

What should I do if I’m going to Greece?

Bring cash. Lots of it:
Exactly what you need to know if you’re vacationing to Greece anytime soon

What a mess. Is there anything lighter than we can end on?

How about some bad poetry?
We gave our Greek crisis correspondent some time off after getting this dispatch

For even more of Quartz’s coverage on the Greek debt crisis, click here and start scrolling…

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