Այցերու գումար - Total Pageviews - Total de visitas

27.2.17

Armenian Diaspora Publications at the British Library

Vahe Boghosian
 
During my time at the British Library working on the Asian and African Collection backlog cataloguing project I have come across a number of thought-provoking printed works in the Armenian Collection. The following post describes three examples which for me highlight the fascinating adaptability and ever changing nature of diasporas. They describe Armenian communities which reached their zenith long ago, and are now seldom remembered, but at the same time they exemplify a willingness to embrace the host culture while remembering and respecting their own cultural roots.

25.2.17

Russia's Dirty Play

Maro Matosian

Most of Armenia’s infrastructure, including energy, railways and mining, was sold to Russia to pay off debt. Over a 10-15 year span, Armenia has lost its sovereignty to Russia. However, not only it is subject to economic hegemony, but the liberal democratic fabric of Armenian society is under threat. The principles of human rights and democracy are perceived as a tool for the opposition to rally against the establishment. Rightfully so, civil society in post-communist states like Armenia is fighting for human rights and against autocratic and dictatorial rule.
Though unable to categorically forbid human rights as in Soviet times, Russia has shrewdly found a more subtle and effective method in shaking the liberal democratic order by spreading alternative news, lies and fear. Let’s observe more closely how “information” is disseminated in Armenia to create public confusion and derail public opinion, ultimately impeding legislation that advances human rights.

24.2.17

Destruction at Tadem: The Purge of the Armenians

 Uzay Bulut

Yet another plague has recently shaken Turkey: the purges of academics from Turkish universities. According to the BIA news network, 4,811 academics from 112 universities have been discharged by five statutory decrees declared during the state of emergency. Fifteen universities have been closed.
One of the universities, from which many academics have been dismissed or even detained by police, is Firat University in the city of Elazig (Kharpert), which has a long history of persecution of Armenian students and educators.

According to Matthew Karanian, the author of the 2015 book Historic Armenia After 100 Years, Kharpert is one of the oldest areas of Armenian habitation. “Some scholars believe that Kharpert may even be the cradle of the Armenian nation,” according to Karanian.
The author Robert Aram Kaloosdian, whose father comes from the village of Tadem in Kharpert, writes about individual stories of the Armenian villagers of Tadem, which was continuously inhabited by Armenians since its founding until the early 1920’s. His 2015 book Tadem, My Father’s Village: Extinguished during the 1915 Armenian Genocide also elaborates on the great importance the Armenian community of the village attached to education and learning.

23.2.17

You Can Visit the Moon, but not Nagorno-Karabakh: the Mind-Boggling Politics of Azerbaijan’s Aliyev Administration

 Christopher Atamian
Haykaram Nahapetyan

Who’s out there? A bewildered Hamlet queries at the beginning of Shakespeare’s greatest of plays. In the case of Azerbaijan, a dictatorial Caviar Republic on the Caspian, the answer is a particular type of insane unscrupulousness that is perfectly in tune with the new wave of right-wing leaders and human rights violators coming to power and ensconced everywhere from Washington D.C. to Moscow. Journalists facing violence, even death, is nothing new but this particular story takes on unique importance because several governments (Belarus and Azerbaijan) have all collaborated directly or indirectly in order to persecute an innocent man—Aleksander Lapshin—as if he were guilty of murder.

22.2.17

Ի՞նչ են տալիս մեզ հայկական հեռուստաալիքները

ՇՈՂԻԿ ՂՈՒԿԱՍԵԱՆ

«Մարդ կայ ելել է շալակն աշխարհի, մարդ էլ կայ աշխարհն է շալակած տանում…»

ԱՄՆի հայկական հեռուստալիքները, ամերիկահայերին պէտք է աջակցեն  ֆիլմերի, երգերի կամ այլոց միջոցով կարօտն առ հայրենիք յաղթահարելուն  եւ հայրենասիրութեան ոգին պահպանելուն: Վստահ եմ, սա է որ իւրաքանչիւր հայ փնտռել է կամ պէտք է փնտռի հայկական հեռուստալիքների մէջ: Աւաղ, այս ամէնը այդքան էլ չի համապատասխանում իրականութեանը, քանի որ հեռուստաընկերութիւնները, ովքեր մի օր մարդկանց միայն ուրախացնում կամ ինֆորմացնում էին, այժմ ապակողմնորոշում եւ այլասերում են իրենց անհամ գովազդներով, ոչինչ չասող հաղորդումներով եւ անտաղանդ դերասանների ապաշնորհ խաղով:

21.2.17

How Istanbul’s Kuleli Military High School Became an Armenian Orphanage

Uzay Bulut
 
The consequences of the July 15, 2016, coup attempt have been top news items in the Turkish media for months. And one of the topics widely discussed is what will become of the Kuleli Military High School in Istanbul, which was closed down by decree of the Turkish government on July 31.
The Kuleli Military High School building, originally the Kuleli Cavalry Barracks, was designed by the prominent Armenian architect Garabed Amira Balyan (1800-1866), who built several palaces, factories, barracks, churches, hospitals, and schools in the Ottoman Empire.

18.2.17

Can Ancient Techniques Make Modern Wine Better?

Karine Vann

After a bit of searching, my driver and I arrive at our destination: Rind, a remote village on Armenia’s western border. Modest residences are strung together along its bumpy, dirt roads. The little community seemingly in the middle of nowhere belies very little to the uninformed traveler, except for an oddly shaped monument placed at the entrance.
It’s almost hard to believe Rind is home to a world-renowned winemaking facility.
“We’re in the remotest village in Yeghegnadzor,” Zorik Gharibian says proudly.
In 1998, Zorik and his wife Yeraz, Iranian Armenians living in Italy, ditched their lifelong dream of opening a winery in Tuscany. Instead, they took their chances in the countrysides of Vayots Dzor, Armenia—a region historically tied to ancient winemaking—and opened Zorah Wines in Rind, located less than a twenty minute-drive from the famous Areni-1 cave complex.

Unearthing Armenia’s Giant, Ancient Earthenware

Karine Vann

The enormous 240-gallon clay vessel, or karas, was nestled snugly in the corner of Asli Saghatelyan’s maran (storage cellar) in Chiva, a modest village in the Vayots Dzor region of Armenia. Asli and her son Mushegh watched with curious faces as I beheld their egg-shaped earthenware with awe.
The Saghatelyans no longer use this forlorn family heirloom, the girth of which exceeds the width of the door’s frame. It belonged to the family’s now-deceased patriarch, who used it to make homemade wine through a traditional process of fermentation and storage that people in this region have used for millennia. At one point, the family possessed at least five of them. Today only two are still intact.

16.2.17

Հեռակայ զրոյց սփիւռքագէտ, «Diaspora» հանդէսի հիմնադիր-խմբագիր Խաչիկ Թէօլէօլեանի հետ


ԱՄՆ-ու նախագահ Թրամփի ընտրութիւնը կը շարունակէ ցնցել միջազգային ընկերային ու քաղաքական շրջանակները։ Ցնցումը զօրաւոր է ու շեշտուած՝ նաեւ ԱՄՆ-ու մէջ։ Դիմեցինք փրոֆ. Խաչիկ Թէօլէօլեանին իբրեւ ամերիկեան քաղաքացի եւ դասախօս անգլիական բաղդատական գրականութեան՝ ԱՄՆ-ու Ուէսլէեան համալսարանին մէջ, ստանալու համար օրուան իրադարձութիւններուն մասին իր տեսակէտը՝ ներսէն, ամերիկահայու աչքով դիտուած. ինչպէս նաեւ այս ծիրէն ներս քննարկելու՝ ԱՄՆու եւ հայ համայնքի ու Հայաստանի փոխյարաբերութիւնները։

15.2.17

Archbishop Shahan Sarkissian: "We are not against Muslims"


Mélinée Le Priol
Translated by Vartan Matiossian 

 
In a visit to France, the prelate of the Armenian Apostolic Church of Aleppo offers a message of reconciliation for a "renewed" Syria.


- What represents the Armenian community in Syria, particularly in Aleppo?
His Eminence Shahan Sarkissian: The presence of Armenians in Syria goes back to the thirteenth century. During the genocide perpetrated by the Turks in 1915, Syria was their final destination, and many survivors remained there afterwards. Before the explosion of the Syrian crisis in 2011, there were 80,000 Armenians in Syria, of which 45,000 in Aleppo. This town is considered the capital of Syrian Armenians. Today, 30,000 Armenians are said to remain in Syria, with half of them in Aleppo. 

14.2.17

Georgia: Protecting an Ancient Alphabet in a Digital Age

Dato Dolidze’s fingers move slowly on the old handset as he writes a text message to his son.
“My phone only has the Latin alphabet, so every time I text I need to translate the Georgian letters into the Latin. It’s a pain,” says the 50-something orange vendor at a Tbilisi vegetable market.
While newer smartphones enable the use of the Georgian alphabet, many in Georgia – where the average wage is $333 a month – are, like Dolidze, stuck with cheaper, older phones.
Georgia’s unique alphabet is one of the unintended casualties of such digital compromises.
The curvy Georgian alphabet has seduced scholars and calligraphers for centuries, most recently the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization. Last December, UNESCO included the Georgian alphabet in the organization’s register of the intangible cultural heritage of humanity.
Georgian in fact features three scripts – the mkhedruli, the one commonly used today, and the ancient asomtavruli and nushkhuri, used mainly in religious scripts, and in most ancient documents. The three scripts, UNESCO wrote in its citation, “coexist thanks to their different functions, reflecting an aspect of Georgia’s diverse cultural identity.”

13.2.17

Նորից ընդդէմ հայացումի մարմաջի

 ԱՐԾՈՒԻ ԲԱԽՉԻՆԵԱՆ

Նորութիւն չէ, որ մեր որոշ հայրենակիցներ, նկատի ունենալով հայերի սփռուածութիւնը, սիրում են անլուրջ, կիսալուրջ կամ միանգամայն լրջօրէն լեգենդներ ստեղծել այս կամ այն նշանաւոր անձնաւորութեան իբրեւ թէ հայկական ծագման մասին: Վաղուց ի վեր ազգային պարապ վախտի խաղալիքներից մէկը դարձած այս հայացումները տեղեկատուական մերօրեայ մատչելիութեան մէջ նոր թափ են ստացել՝ մուտք գործելով նորանոր գրքեր, Համացանցի ամենատարբեր կայքէջեր, նաեւ հեռուստահաղորդումներ, նաեւ կինօ...

12.2.17

MoMA’s subtle act of protest against Trump is a quiet but powerful show of resistance (Marcos Grigorian's works)

Caroline Framke
 
Resistance to the Trump administration has taken the form of rallies, speeches, fundraisers, boycotts, fervent Facebook posts, a sea of knitted pink hats. It’s been loud, determinedly visible, and often furious.
So if you walk through the stark halls of New York City’s Museum of Modern Art, you might not immediately peg it as a site of fiery protest. But thanks to some pointed tweaks to the museum’s most iconic exhibit — the 1880s–1950s collection — that’s exactly what the museum has become.
As the New York Times reported last week, MoMA has quietly taken down several Western works by artists like Matisse and Picasso in favor of pieces from those like British-Iraqi painter Zaha Hadid and Sudanese artist Ibrahim el-Salahi — in other words, artists from the countries included under President Trump’s recent attempts to crack down on immigration via executive order.
And as the order continues to be debated and restrained in court, MoMA confirmed to Vox that “there is no scheduled end date” for this display. In fact, said MoMA director Margaret Doyle, they “expect more works from the banned countries to be installed.”

11.2.17

Alfonso XIII trató de salvar a intelectuales armenios del genocidio cometido por Turquía


La figura de Alfonso XIII ha quedado indudablemente marcada por haber sido el rey que se marchó de España en abril de 1931, al proclamarse la Segunda República. Eso oscureció, por ejemplo, su labor humanitaria durante la Primera Guerra Mundial, impulsando proyectos para salvar de la ejecución a un gran número de prisioneros de la contienda. Estos esfuerzos hicieron que el rey fuera propuesto como candidato al Premio Nobel de la Paz.
Pues bien. Según ha podido comprobar Monarquía Confidencial, en fechas recientes el nombre de Alfonso XIII ha vuelto a sonar ligado a una acción humanitaria para salvar vidas, en este caso en Armenia.

10.2.17

Armenia: Is Concern About Domestic Violence a Liberal Value?

Gayane Abrahamyan
 
Legislation aimed at preventing domestic violence in Armenia has been scuttled after opponents charged that it is a European attempt to undermine traditional Armenian values.
The draft law, titled “Prevention of and the Struggle against Domestic Violence” was published in November on the website of the Ministry of Justice. The bill would have strengthened laws against domestic violence, and created mechanisms aimed at preventing it, as well as services for its victims. It was introduced as part of a European Union program, under which Armenia would be eligible for 11 million euros in aid, contingent on the country passing a law on domestic violence.
After an immediate outcry, the ministry withdrew the bill the next day, and promised to organize public discussions and elicit citizens’ feedback on the legislation.

9.2.17

Urartian antiquities found in a truck in Hungary

Some objects in a trove of Persian, Sumerian, Assyrian and other antiquities found last year in a truck could be from as early as 900 B.C., and the whole collection may be worth up to $690,000, Hungarian police said on February 8, Associated Press reported.
Bronze artifacts, including a helmet, small bells and horse tack, were likely from the grave of a high-ranking military officer from Urartu, also called the Kingdom of Van, corresponding mostly to parts of modern Armenia and Turkey, the Bacs-Kiskun County police department said in a statement.(*)

8.2.17

Armenia in the trap of “national unity”

Anna Zhamakochyan
 
2016 was a year of tumultuous change and continuous challenges. It was a year of crisis for liberal capitalist democracies in the west, which witnessed the rise of right-wing nationalist political parties and movements. The Brexit referendum and Trump’s electoral victory in the US are only the most conspicuous examples of how populist politicians capitalise on people’s sense of economic insecurity, frustration and the desire to change the status quo. In former Soviet states, where the rise of nationalism was simultaneously a trigger and an outcome of the Soviet collapse, ultra-nationalist discourses and right-wing populism without real politics are all too familiar phenomena.
Of course, localised political events are immediate factors too. In Armenia, the rise of the country’s nationalist discourse of “national unity” was strongly linked with the country’s “united and nationwide” movement for Nagorno-Karabakh during the 1980s and 1990s. This discourse prevents more direct criticism and the discussion of alternatives in favour of the national security status quo. And just as peace talks stutter on, so does the conflict periodically resurge, fuelling this discourse further. 

7.2.17

Մերկացուելու վախը (մերկն ու տկլորը)

ԶԱՐՈՒՀԻ ՅՈՎՀԱՆՆԻՍԵԱՆ

Մերկութիւնը մարդու բնական վիճակն է, որը արուեստի սնուցման հիմնական օբիեկտն է եղել մարդկութեան պատմութեան ողջ ընթացքում։ Մարմնի ուսումնասիրութեան հետ է կապուած կերպարուեստի ու քանդակագործութեան կրթութիւնը, եւ առաջինն, ինչ սովորեցնում են գեղարուեստի կրթօջախներում, դա երկար նայել կարողանալն է մերկ մարմնին։ Դա ամբողջովին փոխում է աշխարհընկալումը՝ սեռական ցանկասիրութեան տիրոյթից մարդուն բերելով դէպի գեղագիտական ընկալումներ։ Մարմին-մշակոյթ-հասարակութիւն ընկալումների  ամբողջ տեսածիրը ձեւաւորւում է հենց մերկութեան պատկերային համակարգի միջոցով։

6.2.17

Ronald Suny: “Don’t mistake the present for the future”

Political scientist and historian Ronald Suny recently was the keynote speaker at the annual conference on human rights and freedom expression, held at Boğaziçi University of Istanbul in memory of Hrant Dink. His presentation was entitled "The Crisis of Contemporary Democracy”. Agos weekly talked to Suny about this crisis in terms of Turkey and the world, and its relation to populism. 

5.2.17

Artifacts of the Urartu era unearthed in Gavar (Armenia)

A mausoleum and artifacts dating back to the Urartu (Kingdom of Van) era have been found in the province of Gegharkunik (Armenia). According to Public Radio of Armenia, the artifacts of the Urartian era unearthed in the Republic of Armenia are cleaned and restored in the laboratories of the Service for the Protection of Historical Environment and Cultural Museum Reservations. Archaeologist Ashot Piliposyan says that the artifacts are really exceptional and date back to the 8th century B.C. 

3.2.17

Alexander the Great's Last Will and Testament Was Not Discovered in an Armenian Manuscript

Harry Pettit
 
The news made the rounds of the international press in the past couple of days. We reproduce the information as it appeared in the London-based Daily Mail, which broke the news with the headline "Alexander the Great's last will and testament may have been found 'hiding in plan sight' 2,000 years after his death." The new title is, of course, ours.
The "Alexander Romance," a book of tales about Alexander the Great, written by an author that philologists have called "Pseudo-Callisthenes" (the text was ascribed to Alexander's court historian Callisthenes, who actually died before the king) and translated into various languages in the Middle Ages, has been extensively studied in the scholarship. The text appeared in Latin, Armenian, Georgian, and Syriac versions between the fourth and sixth centuries A.D., and in several other languages at a later time. The newspaper included a picture from an Armenian manuscript of the "Alexander Romance" with the following caption that failed to identify it: "The fabled last will and testament of Alexander the Great, illustrated above, may have finally been discovered. A London-based expert claims to have unearthed Alexander the Great's dying wishes in an ancient text (pictured) that has been 'hiding in plain sight' for centuries." 
The presence of the picture--conveniently lifted from the Wikipedia article on the "Alexander Romance," most probably for its graphic attractive--seems to have tempted Armenian sources into making completely wrong assumptions. For instance, the Public Radio of Armenia (armradio.am), picked up the news on February 1, 2017 and changed the title to "London-Based Expert Discovers Alexander the Great's Last Will in an Ancient Armenian Manuscript." Accordingly, it also modified the second paragraph of the Daily Mail report: "A London-based expert claims to have unearthed the Macedonian king’s dying wishes in an ancient Armenian text that has been ‘hiding in plain sight’ for centuries, The Daily Mail reports" (emphasis is ours). The news piece was immediately picked by MassisPost Online (February 1, 2017). It is most likely that it also appeared in other Armenian printed and online outlets.
The assumption that David Grant, the expert on Alexander the Great who claims to have made such a discovery, somehow needed to read the Armenian version of a text translated into multiple languages in order to make his finding is, indeed, farfetched. (We are not aware of Mr. Grant being an Armenologist, incidentally.) What language a historian of Greece is more prone to have learned? Latin? Or Armenian, Georgian, and/or Syriac? It is even more farfetched to make the claim that the British newspaper reported anything on the Armenian version. We have plenty of "fake news" and "alternative facts" going around to start adding our own ("Armeniaca").