Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Renowned Author Discusses Armenian Persecution [Univ. of Rhode Island]

Chris Curtis, The Good 5¢ Cigar, October 23, 2008

Author Antonia Arslan described the massacre of her extended family in Turkey to a crowded auditorium at the University of Rhode Island Monday as part of a two day event.

Arslan's grandfather told her at a young age the story of his brother's family. In 1915, Turkish soldiers massacred the males of the family at the ancestral family farm. They sent the women and children on a forced march across the desert. [more]

Armenian Student Group Hosts Event for Families [UCLA]

Sophie Rane, The Daily Bruin, November 25, 2008

The Armenian Students Association hosted a “Family Day” event Sunday with a recurring theme: “Many pieces, one Bruin family.”

The student group held the event to illustrate how the Armenian Students Association uses social and cultural events, philanthropy and academic support to create a distinctive Armenian community on campus, said Iren Tatevosyan, president of ASA. [more]

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Tara High School Seniors Explore Armenian Culture [Tara School for Performing Arts]

Mark Collins, Daily Camera, November 14, 2008

Most of the students crowded into the kitchen at Boulder's Tara School for the Performing Arts raise their hands. Each is involved in Tara's upcoming production of the play "Nine Armenians."

Christianian is one of several local Armenian-Americans the Tara cast has encountered to learn about different aspects of Armenian culture. Today, Christianian is teaching the students how to make cheese beoreg, an Armenian cheese turnover made with filo dough, butter and various cheeses. [more]

Friday, November 14, 2008

All-ASA Reaffirms Importance of Armenian American Issues [SSA]

Press Release, Shant Student Association, November 13, 2008

The All-Armenian Students Association ("All-ASA"), a confederation of Armenian American college student organizations, adopted a resolution reaffirming their support for Genocide recognition as well as the self determination of Nagorno-Karabagh. In a general meeting held recently at Loyola Marymount University, delegates voted in favor of the resolution which was introduced by the Shant Student Association ("SSA"), one of more than a dozen organizations represented.

The meeting was attended by more than 30 university students from throughout California and was the first general meeting of the All-ASA for the 2008-2009 academic year.

"It is imperative that as Armenian American students, we voice our concerns regarding community issues, including the Armenian Genocide, the Turkish blockade on Armenia, and the self determination of Nagorno-Karabagh," said SSA Representative to the All-ASA, Caspar Jivalagian.

The adoption of the most recent Armenian Genocide resolution in the U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee in October 2007 sparked a firestorm of media coverage over the Turkish government's threats to retaliate against America if the measure were approved by the full House of Representatives. Turkey has poured millions of foreign dollars into the U.S. political system, hiring both former Members of Congress to make its case and public relations firms to spin media coverage against this human rights legislation.

In September of 1991, the people of Nagorno-Karabagh formally declared their independence, having previously voted overwhelmingly in favor of separation from the Soviet Union and Azerbaijan due to repeated suppression of rights and massacres of Armenians within Azerbaijan. Although Azerbaijan launched a failed full-scale war against the people of Nagorno-Karabagh, it has been unable to assert its authority over the region since the cease-fire brokered in 1994. To this day the Azerbaijani government repeatedly threatens a resumption of war to subjugate the de facto independent republic in violation of the international principle of the self-determination of peoples.

"As students we understand that education is crucial to ensuring that the community at large understands Armenian American issues and our concerns," said Sevada Markosyan, who represented the Cal Poly Pomona ASA at the meeting.

The All-ASA confederation provides a forum for participating independent Armenian American colleges student groups through which these organizations may facilitate cooperative initiatives and deliberate on issues faced by the Armenian college student community.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Armenian Festival [College of the Desert]

Christopher Markarian, The Chaparral, October 13, 2008

Stop by the Armenian Apostolic Church of the Desert on Saturday Oct. 25th and familiarize yourself with the first nation that declared their Christianity in 301 A.D by enjoying the cultural festival right here in Rancho Mirage. [more]

Banned Books and the Armenian Genocide [Hunter College]

David Donabedian, Hunter College Libraries Blog, October 2, 2008

When a government, through its educational and legal system, can direct the flow of thought, banning books and discouraging public debate in the process, truth and freedom of expression are the casualties. An extreme example of this may be seen in the actions taken by the government of Turkey to suppress discussion of its collective past and to stop publication of “books on…subjects such as the Armenian genocide, the Kurdish issue and Turkey’s Greek minority.” [more]

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Genocide Awareness Month [UC Berkeley]

Throughout the month of April, the Armenian Student Association of UC Berkeley held its annual Genocide Awareness Month.

This year, the campaign began with a candlelight vigil on April 2oth in commemoration of the Armenian and all other genocides.

A special Pomegranate Memorial, symbolizing Armenian culture and endurance, was crafted by the ASA members and brought out for the vigil. It remained on display for the entire week in front of the campus' main library with a dozen informational posters on the Armenian Genocide surrounding it.

Campus activities for the month culminated with the 5th annual UC Berkeley ASA "United Hands Across Cal" demonstration on April 22. The event consisted of Armenian students and anti-genocide activists linking hands across UC Berkeley's famous Sproul Hall in unity against human rights abuses. It also featured musical performances, poetry, and speeches.

ASA students capped off the campaign by joining with CalSlam, a Berkeley poetry group, to hold a special Genocide Awareness Poetry Slam session on the night of the 22nd.

(Thank you to UC Berkeley ASA member, Andre Ivan Arzoo, for supplying the material featured in this post. Click here for an interview with Arzoo and other activists on a KPFA Radio program commemorating the Armenian Genocide)

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Letters Condemning Defacement of Genocide Memorial [USC]

Daily Trojan, May 1, 2008

"The best answer to the haters and deniers here at USC and abroad would be to recognize the Armenian Genocide."

"Never Again, must be a reality, and not a slogan."

Alissa Bittenson
USC Tzedek Chair

Charlie Carnow
Former USC Tzedek Chair [more]

Students Recognize Armenian Genocide [UC Irvine]

Stella Cho, Arshi Khan, and David Lumb, New University, April 28, 2008

"The day carries the charge of injustice for those descendents of the half-million Armenians who were lucky enough to survive, and as such has been commemorated by the UC Irvine Armenian Student Association in recent years through the “Peace, Love and Genocide” event series." [more]

Armenian Genocide Issue Requires Sustainable Solution [Tufts]

Harout Harry Semerdjian, Tufts Daily, April 28, 2008

"This month, the world once again commemorates the 1915 mass killings and deportation of over two million Armenians by the Young Turk regime of the Ottoman Empire. Ninety-three years after the first genocide of the 20th century, the United States and the international community should, at last, compel the leadership of Turkey to seek a real and sustainable solution to the Armenian Genocide issue by ensuring that the country comes to terms with its past, as well as adopts some much-desired changes in its policies toward Armenia." [more]

Valley Marks 93rd Anniversary of the Armenian Genocide [Valley College]

Astrid Seipelt, Valley Star, April 27, 2008

"Thursday night was a night of remembrance and recognition for the Armenian community of Valley College, as more than 80 people gathered in Monarch Hall to honor the 93rd anniversary of the Armenian Genocide." [more]

Century's 1st Genocide Remembered by Students [Rutgers]

Pablo Albilal, Daily Targum, April 25, 2008

"Somber music floated around passersby, as Armenian-American students and others convened to commemorate the 93rd anniversary of the 1915 Armenian genocide, the first of the century, in front of Brower Commons yesterday on the College Avenue campus." [more]

Armenian Students Organization Reflects on 1915 Genocide [Univ. of Mass.]

Jess Sacco, Daily Collegian, April 25, 2008

"Yesterday, as the evening approached, students of the Armenian Students Organization (ASO) gathered on the steps of the Student Union to recognize the 1915 Armenian Genocide in a commemorative candlelight vigil." [more]

Student Groups Remember Genocide [USC]

Silva Sevlian, Daily Trojan, April 25, 2008

Naritsa Kazanjian cannot trace back her family linage more than two generations, a fate common among Armenians because of the Armenian genocide, which left 1.5 million people dead.

"My grandfather doesn't know who his parents are," said Kazanjian, a junior majoring in accounting. "Kazanjian is not even my last name - it is the name he took from his adopted family." [more]

Students Disrupt Genocide Memorial [USC]

Melody Chiu, Daily Trojan, April 24, 2008

"A peaceful demonstration was disrupted Wednesday when two students stepped on flowers and knocked down signs at a memorial service honoring those who died in the Armenian genocide between 1915 and 1923." [more]

Enough is Enough: Recognize the Armenian Genocide [CSUN]

Eileen Mansoorian, Daily Sundial, April 24, 2008

"It is no secret that the Armenian Genocide happened. There are pictures and documentations on the atrocities that can fill up a museum. If a person has done their research, there is no way they can deny the inhumane acts of the Ottoman Empire in the beginning of the 20th century as an act of genocide." [more]

Anger and Remembrance for Armenian UCSB Students [UC Santa Barbara]

Ben Preston, Santa Barbara Independent, April 24, 2008

"Last night in the dimly lit auditorium of the Isla Vista Theater, a group of about 60 people listened as members of UCSB’s Armenian Student Association (ASA) read aloud the memories of survivors of the Armenian Genocide —which began on April 24, 1915, and lasted until just after World War I. Chilling tales were recounted — a father raped by gendarmes while his family was forced to watch; a group of five- to ten-year-old boys thrown into a pile and stabbed with bayonets; families forced to march across the desert for days without water, only to drink from a river filled with swollen corpses." [more]

Ninety-Three Years and Counting [Univ. of Arizona]

Sevan Abnous, Arizona Daily Wildcat, April 22, 2008

"Ninety-three years have passed and Armenians from all over the world still commemorate the Armenian Genocide. Since Turkey failed to erase the entire population of Armenia, Armenians have the opportunity to educate others in hopes that the world will recognize the Genocide and Turkey's actions will never be forgotten." [more]

Monday, April 21, 2008

'SCREAMERS' Hopes to Incite Against Genocide [UCLA]

Elizabeth Packer, The Daily Bruin, April 17, 2008

“P.L.U.C.K.,” which deals specifically with the Armenian Genocide, is one of the band’s songs featured in “Screamers,” screening tonight at the James Bridges Theater. “Screamers” follows System of a Down, charting their concert tours and personal experiences as the issue of modern genocide and subsequent denial is explored. The film will be followed with a Q and A session with director Carla Garapedian.

The screening is co-sponsored by the Graduate Students Association’s Melnitz Movies and the Armenian Graduate Student Association. Raffi Kassabian, a third-year law student and executive officer of the Armenian Graduate Student Association, hopes to attract a large audience to the event. [more]

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Two Allegiances, One Truth [Univ. of Michigan, Ann Arbor]

Lisa Haidostian, The Michigan Daily, April 9, 2008

As a third-generation Armenian, and ever since I spent my first summer transitioning abruptly from country club tennis matches to singing the Armenian anthem at culture camp, I've been playing some sort of identity hopscotch game, never quite knowing on exactly which square to land.

It's no surprise that there's a blurring of national loyalties for someone who grew up, as I did, with steadfast ties to an ancestral homeland, but who also waves the American flag, as I do, as high as the rest on the Fourth of July.

But for many Armenians, there's an especially strong devotion to our ethnicity because of an unrecognized, unaddressed and often unknown genocide that's been stinging our people for more than 92 years. [more]

Armenian Genocide: Power of the Poster [Pierce College]

Shweta Saraswat, The Roundup, April 2, 2008

Today, Pierce College is taking a step in spreading awareness of the Armenian Genocide through the medium of art, with the opening of the "Power of the Poster"exhibition in April - the month of commemoration of the genocide.

"I think not a lot of people know about it because I get a lot of blank stares in classrooms when I talk about it," said professor Ramela Abbamontian, who is the gallery coordinator and curator of the show. [more]

Monday, March 31, 2008

Panel Speaks on Armenian Art, Diaspora [Columbia]

Shane Ferro, Columbia Spectator, March 10, 2008

"Armenian contemporary art and cultural divides were on the minds of international scholars, artists, and musicians who gathered in Alfred Lerner Hall to participate in a day-long forum on the Armenian diaspora and artistic development on Saturday.

The forum, which was held by the Armenian Club, addressed questions of contemporary Armenians about their culture’s perceived shortcomings." [More]

Monday, March 10, 2008

Fighting the Denial of Genocide [UCLA]

Wafiqah Basrai, The Daily Bruin, March 7, 2008

In a panel discussion titled “Facing Denial, the Last Stage of Genocide,” four experts spoke about the injustice of denying the Armenian genocide.

The event, hosted by the Shant Student Association and the Armenian Graduate Students Association, was held in order to acknowledge all genocides, said Raffi Kassabian, executive officer of AGSA.

The Armenian genocide refers to the killing of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire beginning April 24, 1915.

The total number of Armenian deaths are estimated to be around 1 million to 1.5 million. Turkey, the successor state of the Ottoman Empire, does not recognize these events as genocide.

But Joey Kurtzman, executive editor of Jewcy, an online magazine, said there is an overwhelming consensus regarding the Armenian genocide. [more]

Thursday, March 6, 2008

CSULB Professors Challenge Armenian Genocide Denial [Cal State Long Beach]

Patricia Cleary and Sharon Sievers, Daily 49er, February 20, 2008

In a recent letter to the editor sent to the California State University, Long Beach (CSULB) school newspaper, two proffesors of history at the school challenge the denialist notion that the Armenian Genocide is somehow "hotly debated" in academic circles.

Their letter is in response to an article which described a recent panel on the Armenian Genocide at the school as "controversial" and "disputed." The article suggested that the panel was contested by the audience and faculty for not having a voice supporting the Turkish government's denialist position.

The two professors point out in their letter that "Scholars who have done exhaustive research confirm the Armenian genocide" and they explain that material suggesting the Genocide did not occur is "deeply affected by the involvement of the Turkish government, which has vigorously and consistently denied that a genocide - or any government-directed massacres - took place." [more]

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Armenian Students Host Speakers on Heritage [UCLA]

Allison Fung, Daily Bruin, February 19, 2008

The Armenian Graduate Students Association held its sixth annual colloquium on Friday afternoon – an event that featured speakers from domestic and international universities in panels pertaining to topics in Armenian studies.

This year, graduate students attended from Armenia, Hungary, Germany and Turkey; as well as from University of California, Irvine and California State University, Northridge. [more]

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Professor Criticized for Genocide Views [Cal State Long Beach]

Rosaura Figueroa and Erin McKenzie, Daily 49er, February 13, 2008

"'[It's] not possible to consider a denialist point of view,' said Akcam.

Hovannisian added that to invite a scholar who supported the Turkish government's official stance was equivalent to inviting a Holocaust denier to a forum on the genocide of the Jewish population and others during the times of Nazi Germany."

CSUF Geta a Taste of Armenian Culture [Cal State Fullerton]

Joshua Burton, Daily Titan, February 13, 2008

"The performance and events like it are strongly supported by the Armenian community, a support which could be felt in the words of the audience afterward.

'It brings diversity,' said Alex Der Alexanian, an Orange County Armenian activist. 'It teaches the community new cultures they might not know from their usual experiences.'"

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Berkeley City Council Calls for Genocide Recognition [UC Berkeley]

Press Release, ANC-San Francisco, January 29, 2008

"I’m glad to see Berkeley once again stand up for human rights,” said Shant Hagopian, a UC Berkeley student and Bay Area ANC activist. “This resolution is one more step forward on the path to justice.”

Friday, January 11, 2008

ASAs Host ANC Advocacy Workshop [UCLA]

Press Release, ANC-WR, January 10, 2008

"The workshop was the first in a series being offered by the ANC for youth leaders and activists. The workshops were inspired by the high volume of community – and especially campus – activism during the recent consideration and adoption of H.Res.106, the US House Armenian Genocide resolution."