Genocide and Immortality? Dr. Roberta Ervine to Open ZIC Autumn Enrichment Series

The Zohrab Center’s Autumn Enrichment Series will begin on Tuesday, September 27 with a presentation by Dr. Roberta Ervine entitled, In the Harsh Light of Genocide: Armenian Thoughts on Immortality.

2016-09-ervineanmahutiwn-001Dr. Ervine is Professor of Armenian Studies at St. Nersess Armenian Seminary. She is a regular lecturer at the Zohrab Center.

The Genocide forced Armenians to reconsider their human experience in the light of mass death and dislocation. In an insecure and threatening world, what can one depend on? Is there a life after death, and if so, who is in charge of it? Where does it happen? What is it like? What qualities make a person, a community, or an ethnic group immortal? Does immortality have anything to do with faith? How does immortality relate to traditional Armenian religious teaching, if at all?

Prof. Roberta ErvineOn an almost week-by-week basis, Armenian periodical literature from the 1920’s and 1930’s records the process by which these questions worked themselves out in the minds of survivors and Diaspora Armenians alike.

Rereading this long forgotten body of writings, Dr. Ervine will explore the new, post-Genocide thinking on the topic of immortality, and look at where Armenians turned to find inspiration and consolation in the uncertain decades immediately following the Genocide.

Since 2001 Professor Roberta Ervine has taught courses on
Classical and Modern Armenian Language, Church History, and Armenian Theology and Spirituality at St. Nersess Seminary in Armonk, New York. She earned her PhD in classical Armenian Studies from Columbia University and has done extensive research on topics related to medieval Armenian studies. She pursues topics related to the history of Armenians in Jerusalem and the intellectual tradition of the Armenian Middle Ages.

2016-09-ervineimmortality-001During the Spring  she was the Henry K. Khanzadian Kazan Visiting Professor of Armenian Studies at California State University, Fresno.

Dr. Ervine’s presentation will take place in the Guild Hall of the Armenian Diocese in New York on Tuesday, Septmeber 27, 2016. All are invited to the event, which is free of charge. A reception will follow. For further information contact the Zohrab Center at or (212) 686-0710.

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One thought on “Genocide and Immortality? Dr. Roberta Ervine to Open ZIC Autumn Enrichment Series

  1. Hello Fr. Findikian,

    Sorry for the long delay- all thanks for Zohrab’s educational series! I have been ready to thank you from the very first time I came in. I know that to come in and attend is first and indispensable, but leaving out each time with so many pebbles in mind have been deserving more than sharing in the delectable bites and sips!

    Here’re some particular thank you-s

    – the *Armenian Poetry* evening. I knew Lola from few earlier encounters, and I really liked one of Sarah Giragosian’s poems- *Tell Me The Rest.* St. Paul’s *The Romans* was in the air through the poem, to her pleasant surprise too!

    – it was *Arshile Gorky’s* painting with his mother, that brought me back to a family photo- my grandma and grandpa, in hospital setting, that I’m always grateful to remember

    – *The Music Of The Armenian Church* has been particularly lastingly momentous for me. And I appreciate also your courage to bring about ideas from the book in the open that you apparently disagree with: Mr. Pidejians observation, that the 7th c. Armenian Church had reached a musical (and liturgical) watershed moment defining itself away from the Pan-Christianity.

    – *The Young Turk Revolution of 1908* … this was, I think, a weak night, presentation was rather confusing and presented facts could have been more researched and better interpreted

    *- **Three Early Armenian Churches and their Message**: Christina Maranchi was phenomenal- one of my hopes now, is to see the Church At Mren personally. Her story had so much to rub with Pidejian’s ideas, but in almost tangential way. Very grateful for this lecture!*

    *- **Komitas Vartabed and the Survival of Armenian Music* was very informative- Ashley, I think, got a nice trajectory of relating Armenian Music with Armenian Church music and their mutual and ultimate survival. To me, it looked like, Mr. Pidejian’s ideas came to a full bloom- Yekmalyan’s and Gomidas’ Badaraks were what Gomidas Vartabed started as a trend in 7th c.

    And lastly, the new lecture tomorrow is titled quite interestingly, if not perplexingly: *Genocide And Immortality.* On the first night I came in, we briefly discussed your *From Victims To Victors*. This lecture I’m sure will be as illuminating and as challenging too.

    Thanks again, and blessings.

    See you.


    On Tue, Sep 20, 2016 at 7:21 AM, The Zohrab Information Center wrote:

    > zohrabcenter posted: “The Zohrab Center’s Autumn Enrichment Series will > begin on Tuesday, September 27 with a presentation by Dr. Roberta Ervine > entitled, In the Harsh Light of Genocide: Armenian Thoughts on Immortality. > Dr. Ervine is Professor of Armenian Studies at St. Ners” >

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