How Did I Survive? Book Presentation by Dr. Aleksandr V. Gevorkyan

2016-10-howsurvivebookjacketDr. Aleksandr V. Gevorkyan will present the memoirs of his grandfather, the renowned Soviet Armenian philosopher, Professor Artavazd M. Minasyan (1913-1993) in the Guild Hall of the Armenian Diocese in New York on Thursday, October 20, 2016 at 7PM.

Entitled, How Did I Survive?, Professor Minasyan’s memoirs were translated into English and edited by Dr. Gevorkyan, who will present the book.

Professor Minasyan was one of the founders of the dialectic school of philosophy. He made immense contributions to the scientific content of philosophy through his numerous research articles, monographs, textbooks, and conference presentations.

The book tells the remarkable story of an intellectual  of the highest caliber, and the challenges, controversies, destruction and injustice posed by life in the Soviet Union. The author unveils intricate details of his time, describing his fight for survival and what inspired and gave him strength to go on from the days of his hungry childhood, Stalin’s purges, facing the enemy one-on-one during World War II, or struggling in peacetime for the right to voice alternative views in science.

2016-10-howsurvivedrevised-001Covering the period of approximately eighty years from the early 1910s to the early 1990s the narrative coincides with the author’s life-journey, touching upon every significant event of the time and the author’s personal involvement in each case. These situations are not told in simple chronological enumeration, but are enriched with complex nuances. They are analyzed through the prism of time and the author’s adherence to dialectical critique. Hence one man’s life becomes the reflection of the life of the entire country.

Dr. Aleksandr V. Gevorkyan is Assistant Professor of Economics in Department of Economics and Finance of the Peter J. Tobin College of Business at St. John’s University in New York City; a Vincentian Research Fellow at the Vincentian Centre for Church and Society, and a Research Fellow at the Center for Global Business Stewardship. Dr. Gevorkyan also serves as Economics Subject Matter Expert for the Permanent Observer Mission of the Holy See To the United Nations in New York. Additionally, Dr. Gevorkyan has worked as a Visiting Research Fellow at the Central Bank of Armenia. Dr. Gevorkyan’s extensive teaching and research experience covers themes in macroeconomic policy, economic development, international financial economics, labor migration, sovereign debt, commodities markets, and post-socialist transition economics. Dr. Gevorkyan is a co-editor (with Otaviano Canuto) of Financial Deepening and Post-Crisis Development in Emerging Markets (Palgrave MacMillan, 2016). He is also the author of Innovative Fiscal Policy and Economic Development in Transition Economies (Routledge, 2013 in paperback; 2011 in hardcover).

The book presentation is open to the public and free of charge. Books will be available for sale during a reception that will follow the presentation.

CLICK HERE to download a full-color flyer. For further information contact the Zohrab Center at zohrabcenter@armeniandiocese.org or (212) 686-0710.

 

 

Komitas Vartabed and the Survival of Armenian Music. June 9

0205KomitasThis season’s final Zohrab Center enrichment evening will be devoted to the legacy of the celebrated and beloved Armenian priest-musician-composer, Komitas Vartabed.

Ashley Bozian-Murtha will present a talk entitled, Komitas Vartabed and the Survival of Armenian Music at the Zohrab Center on Thursday, June 9 at 7PM.

Komitas is a central figure in the history of Armenian music, particularly the sacred music of the Armenian Church. His contributions span liturgical, folk, and even concert music. Surprisingly, despite his universal admiration today, during his lifetime his work earned him the ire of church officials and his fellow clergymen, who frequently denounced him as a musicological firebrand and moral deviant.

KomitasVartabedPerhaps more significant than his work inside Armenia, however, is his legacy to the global Armenian diaspora. While controversial during his lifetime, Komitas was uniquely positioned to preserve Armenian music from the oblivion of genocide. Were it not for his oft-condemned inclination to transcribe and transform the music of Armenia, that vast tradition may well have perished in the attempted destruction of the Armenian people.

Much research exists on the life of Komitas, and on Armenian music as a separate entity, but there remains a relative paucity of work to place the two in context with one another. Ms. Bozian-Murtha will survey and sort through the biographical, musicological, and historical research on the composer and his impact on Armenian music. Analyzing the composer’s original compositions and transcriptions along with secondary biographical sources and historical data, she asserts that the very survival of Armenian music in the aftermath of the Genocide is a direct result of Komitas’s labors. 

2016-05 MaranciVigilantPowersFlyer.001.jpeg.001CLICK HERE to download a flyer.

Ashley Bozian-Murtha is a PhD candidate in History at St. John’s University (New York). She holds a B.A. in History and Music and an M.Ed. from Manhattanville College (New York). Following her undergraduate work, she earned an MA in Music History from Hunter College, where she wrote her master’s thesis on the life and work of Komitas Vartabed. 

The program will be held in the Guild Hall of the Armenian Diocese in New York. All are welcome to attend the free event, which will be followed by a reception.

For further information contact the Zohrab Center at zohrabcenter@armeniandiocese.org or (212) 686-0710.

Armenians and the History of Photography. A Pictorial Presentation on December 9

ArmPhotography1Who knew that in the Middle East of the 19th century, the pioneers of the newly-emerging art of photography were Armenians?

That is indeed the case according to Dr. Joseph E. Malikian, founder of a massive, new archive of vintage photographs. Dr. Malikian will tell the story in a pictorial presentation at the Zohrab Center entitled, From Constantinople to Egypt: The Armenians in the Development of Photography in the Near East. 

The presentation will take place on Wednesday, December 9 at 7PM in the Guild Hall of the Armenian Diocese, 630 2nd Avenue, New York, NY.

2015-11 ArmenianPhotographyMalikian.001CLICK HERE to download a flyer.

It is well established that as early as the 1850s prominent photographers emerged from the Armenian communities in many of the cultural and commercial capitals and principal towns in the Ottoman Empire. Armenian photographers such as the Abdullah Freres, Pascal Sebah and Gabriel Lekegian enjoyed tremendous success first in Constantinople and eventually in Egypt.

During this early period, Jerusalem also emerged as a center where Armenians played a dominant role in the field of photography. The leading photographer of the Armenian Convent there was Garabed Krikorian.

ArmenianPhotography1Dr. Malikian will discuss these photographers and their contributions. He will explore the reasons why the Armenians played a dominant role and were considered to be pioneers in the newly invented photographic industry in the Ottoman Empire. The presentation will draw generously upon vintage images acquired for a newly formed archive, The Middle East and Armenian Photography Archive (MEAPP). 

ArmenianPhotography2Dr. Malikian is a frequent visitor to the Zohrab Center, where he has been studying the ZIC’s small but important collection of historic photographs, some of which he will display during his lecture.

Malikian is the author of The Armenians in the Ottoman Empire: An Anthology and a Photo History, published in 2011 by the Armenian Catholicate of Cilicia.

For the past ten years, Joseph E. Malikian has been engaged in the study of archival photographs as it relates to Ottoman and Middle Eastern history. During the course of his research, he initiated an internationally based project (The Middle East and Armenian Photograph Project – MEAPP) which is devoted to the collection of vintage images of the Middle East around the turn of the twentieth century, in addition to images by the Armenian photo studios from the 1850s to the 1960s.

The lecture is free and open to the public. For further information contact the Zohrab Center at zohrabcenter@armeniandiocese.org or (212) 686-0710.

#armenianphotographers

There Was and There Was Not. Book Presentation Thursday, March 26, 2015

2015-03 ThereWasMeline Toumani will read from her new book, There Was and There Was Not: A Journey Through Hate and Possibility in Turkey, Armenia and Beyond at the Armenian Diocese, 630 Second Avenue, New York on Thursday, March 26 at 7PM.

The event is being co-sponsored by the Zohrab Information Center, the Armenian Students’ Association, and the Armenian Network of America.

Dr. Margarit Ordukhanyan, Adjunct Assistant Professor of Classical and Oriental Studies at Hunter College, will moderate the evening’s discussion and presentation.

In her new memoir, a finalist for the 2014 National Book Critics Circle Award in autobiography, Ms. Toumani examines the complex role that inherited ideas about “the Turk” have played in her own identity as an Armenian-American and as a writer.

“I read Meline Toumani’s original and audacious book with admiration, first for the grainy pleasures of her narrative—the raw energy of true encounters,” writes Michael J. Arlen, author of the classic Passage to Ararat, adding, “And perhaps even more for her nerve and seriousness in trying, as an Armenian-American woman, to find a path between the often self-defeating absolutism of her own Armenian community and the Orwellian evasions of most contemporary Turks when asked to acknowledge the plain act of long-ago genocide in plain language.”

The public is invited to the presentation, which will take place in the Guild Hall of the Diocese, and is free of charge. A reception will follow, with copies of the book available for purchase.

Those planning to attend are asked to RSVP to nyasa@asainc.org.

New Book on 19th Century Armenian Composer Kristapor Kara-Murza

19th century Armenian composer Kristapor Kara-Murza was an instructor at the Kevorkian Seminary in Holy Etchmiadzin and composed a setting of the Divine Liturgy.
19th century Armenian composer Kristapor Kara-Murza was an instructor at the Kevorkian Seminary in Holy Etchmiadzin and composed a setting of the Divine Liturgy.

Musicologist Mr. Krikor Pidejian will present his new book on the 19th-century Armenian composer Kristapor Kara-Murza on Thursday, February 19 at 7:30PM at St. Leon Armenian Church, 12-61 Saddle River Road, Fair Lawn, NJ.

Noted pianist Şahan Arzruni will also speak at the event.

The Zohrab Information Center is co-sponsoring the event with St. Leon Armenian Church (Fair Lawn, NJ), the Armenian General Benevolent Union (AGBU), the Armenian Network of America- Greater NY, the Esayan-Getronagan Alumni Association and the Tekeyan Cultural Association.

Kristapor Kara-Murza was arguably the first composer to introduce homophony or chordal music to Armenian music and the first to form mixed gender choirs that brought Armenian men and women together to sing as a group.

Kara-Murza also composed a setting of the Badarak, the Divine Liturgy.

Krikor Pidedjian and Şahan Arzrun will place the work of Kara-Murza in historical and social contexts and bring to life exchanges with personalities of the time, such as Khrimian Hayrig. They will share new discoveries, including a Divine Liturgy composed by Kara-Murza that was found by Krikor Pidedjian and Kara-Murza’s connection to the Armenian national anthem, Mer Hayrenik.

Krikor Pidedjian is a noted conductor, composer and author. He will speak in Armenian.Şahan Arzruni is an accomplished pianist, composer, writer, producer and recording artist. His presentation will be in English.

2015-02 PidejianFlyer-page-001Click here to download a flyer.

The book presentation is free and open to the public. A reception will follow. For more information call St. Leon Armenian Church at (201) 791-2862

Learn! Grow! Inspire! 2015 Spring Lecture Series

ZZohrab.001The Zohrab Center presents a rich and varied program of lectures, book presentations, and other stimulating opportunities for enrichment and edification this Winter and Spring. Armenians and anyone interested in Armenian civilization, arts, letters, and faith will find many options to learn, to grow and to inspire others.

A new study on Armenian music, a guide to the Armenian Church’s Holy Week ceremonies, a photographic album of the old Armenian community of Bourj-Hammoud, a Genocide-era novel, and a new travelogue of historic western Armenia will all be showcased by their authors. In addition, noted scholars will hold forth on various facets of Armenian Studies, including Vartan Matossian, Helen Evans and Roberta Ervine. A movie night and other events are also planned.

The Zohrab Center is collaborating with several sister organizations and parishes to co-sponsor some events.

All events are open to the public and most are free of charge. Unless otherwise noted, all presentations take place at the Zohrab Center (Armenian Diocese, New York). Check back frequently for updates and additions. For further information contact ZIC at info@zohrabcenter.org or (212) 686-0710.

ZIC Schedule of Events Spring 2015

Thursday, February 5 (7PM)
“Code Name Haiko: Discovering the Last Unknown Participant in Talaat Pasha’s Liquidation” Dr. Vartan Matiossian, Armenian National Education Committee

Thursday, February 12
Commemoration of St. Vartan and His Companions. Divine Liturgy and Dinner followed by Lecture. Co-sponsored with St. Vartan Armenian Cathedral
“An Anthropologist Considers St. Vartan: Faith, Nation and Memory” Lecture by Christopher Sheklian, University of Chicago

Thursday, February 19 (7PM)
St. Leon Armenian Church, Fair Lawn, NJ

The Life and Work of 19th-Century Armenian Composer Kristapor Gara-Murza. Book Presentation by Krikor Pidejian with Şahan Arzruni.

Thursday, March 5 (7PM)
Co-sponsored with Eastern Diocese Department of Armenian Studies
Portraits of Survival: The Armenians of Bourj Hammoud. Book Presentation by Ariane Ateshian Delacampagne.

Thursday, March 12 (7PM)
A.G.B.U. Center, New York

Historic Armenia after 100 Years. Book Presentation by Matthew Karamian

Thursday, March 19 (7PM)
“A Guided Tour of Holy Week in the Armenian Church” Lecture and Book Presentation by Fr. Daniel Findikyan, Zohrab Information Center/St. Nersess Armenian Seminary

Wednesday, April 8 (7PM)
“Picking Up the Pieces: Three Bishops and Their Vision for the Armenian Church circa 1920” Lecture by Dr. Roberta Ervine, St. Nersess Armenian Seminary

Thursday, April 16 (7PM)
Co-sponsored with the Eastern Diocese Department of Armenian Studies
The Martyred Armenian Writers 1915-1922. Book presentation by Herand Markarian

Thursday, April 30 (7PM)
“Armenian Art: Voice of a People” Dr. Helen Evans, Metropolitan Museum of Art

Tuesday, June 2 (7PM)
The Survivor. Book Presentation: Rosemary Hartounian Cohen.

Nowhere: A Story of Exile. ZIC Book Presentation November 13, 2014

TurcotteNowhereAnna Astvatsaturian Turcotte lost her childhood to the ethnic cleansing in Baku, Azerbaijan in 1988.

Her life was swept away at the tender age of 10 when Muslim Azeris drove the Armenian community out of the country using terror and violence. Fleeing to Armenia, which was still reeling from the earthquake of 1988, she found herself an outsider; a nationless girl surviving in an unheated basement and facing discrimination again, this time by her own people.

Nowhere: A Story of Exile is a riveting story of organized terror, refugee life, and the desperate search for one’s home told through the diary entries of a young girl. Anna gives voice to a horrific tragedy little reported in the West, to the Armenian community of Azerbaijan and to the child victims of ethnic cleansing everywhere.

TurcottePhotoAnna Astvatsaturian Turcotte will speak of her experiences at the Zohrab Information Center on Thursday, November 13 at 7:00PM. Her presentation will be held in the Guild Hall of the Armenian Diocese, 630 2nd Avenue, New York. It is being co-sponsored by the Zohrab Center and the Armenian Network of America Greater NY Chapter.

Ms. Astvatsaturian Turcotte came to the United States as an Armenian refugee in 1992 and became a US citizen in 1997. She holds a law degree and was one of the first Americans to clerk for the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands after observing its creation at the United Nations. Anna is currently living in the United States and working in the financial industry. She is married and has two children.

“Anna’s diary, written from the wide-eyed perspective of an 11-year old girl, is nevertheless remarkably incisive and haunting in its portrayal of the cruelties inflicted on the Armenian people of Baku,” said V. Rev. Fr. Daniel Findikyan, Director of the Zohrab Center. He added, “Anna is the Armenian Anne Frank of our times.”

AnnaTurcotteFlyer.001The book presentation is free and open to the public. A reception will follow.

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD A FLYER.

For further information contact the Zohrab Center at zohrabcenter@armeniandiocese.org or (212) 686-0710.

#NowhereExile

ZIC Schedule of Autumn Events

ZZohrab.001The Zohrab Information Center announces a wide-ranging and captivating schedule of educational programs for the Autumn season. Armenian and non-Armenian scholars and artists will present programs on Armenian architecture and liturgy, literature, film, poetry and the anticipated canonization of the martyrs of the Genocide by the Armenian Church.

The first program on Wednesday evening, September 10, will be the screening of the film Garod (Yearning) by the award-winning Armenian filmmaker Frunze Dovlatyan. The movie will be presented in Armenian with English subtitles and will be introduced by writer, translator and filmmaker Christopher Atamian, who will also lead a discussion following the movie.

2014FallScheduleCLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE ZOHRAB CENTER’S SCHEDULE OF EVENTS.

All ZIC events take place at the Armenian Diocese, 630 Second Avenue, New York, and are open to the public. Most presentations will be video-recorded and posted on this website within a day or two of the date of presentation.

Follow us as well on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

 

ZIC Goes to the Movies on Wednesday, September 10

Garod (Yearning) presents a brave look at issues such as nationalism, patriotism and the effects of the 1915 Genocide.
Garod (Yearning) presents a brave look at issues such as nationalism, patriotism and the effects of the 1915 Genocide.

The Zohrab Information Center launches its Autumn educational series on September 10 with a night at the movies. Featured will be the 1990 film Garod (Yearning) by the legendary Armenian director Frunze Dovlatyan.The film is a brave look at issues such as nationalism, patriotism and the effects of the 1915 Genocide on a village of Armenians on the Turkish-Armenian border.

The film is in Armenian with English subtitles.

The film will be introduced by leading writer, translator, journalist and filmmaker Christopher Atamian, who will also lead an open discussion about the film following its screening.

Award-winning Armenian filmmaker Frunze Dovlatyan
Award-winning Armenian filmmaker Frunze Dovlatyan

Frunze Dovlatyan is best known for his 1966 film Barev Yess Em, which was selected as the Soviet Union’s official submission to the Cannes Film Festival that year. Born in Gavar, Armenia, Dovlatyan was one of Armenia’s best-known directors. He studied at the Sundukyan Theater in Yerevan and headed Armenfilm Studio in the 1980’s and 1990’s.

The 1990 film Garod reveals what happens when the yearning or nostalgia to return to one’s childhood village becomes irresistible. This exciting, informative and sometimes sad film also presents a fascinating look at the dark side of Soviet Armenia.

Noted New York filmmaker Christopher Atamian will introduce the film and lead a discussion.
Noted New York filmmaker Christopher Atamian will introduce the film and lead a discussion.

Chrisopher Atamian has written, lectured and taught extensively on film  at NYU, UConn Storrs, BAM and the Huffington Post, where he writes a blog on culture, the arts and current events. He is an alumnus of Harvard University, Columbia Business School and USC Film School. Among his many creative projects, he has begun a book of critical essays on Armenian film entitled Nationalism, Identity and Sexuality Film or: The Nostalgic Impulse. 

Atamian has spoken at the Zohrab Center and visits the ZIC frequently in the course of his creative work.

The event will take place in Guild Hall of the Diocese of the Armenian Church, 630 Second GarodAvenue, New York at 7PM on Wednesday, September 10. The film and discussion are open to the public. Donation is $5. Students with ID will be admitted free. Refreshments will be provided during and after the movie.

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD A FLYER.

For further information contact the Zohrab Center at zohrabcenter@armeniandiocese.org or (212) 686-0710. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter. #GarodYearning

VIDEO. Armenians in a Multicultural World. Dr. Roberta Ervine Delights and Challenges

Did you miss last week’s marvelous presentation at the Zohrab Center by Dr. Roberta Ervine? She read between the lines of the writings of the 12th-century Armenian monk Mkhitar Gosh and uncovered surprising insights for all who wonder whether Armenians have a future in our complex, multicultural world.

Enjoy the video.