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News > Pan-Armenian News > Society for Armenian Studies meets in Montreal


Fatma Gocek and Etienne MahcupyanThe Society for Armenian Studies (SAS) held its annual meeting in the Palais des Congrès in Montreal, Canada, in conjunction with the Middle East Studies Association's (MESA) Conference (November 17-21, 2007).
 
The highlight at the Montreal conference was a panel sponsored jointly by the SAS and the Turkish Studies Association dedicated to the memory of slain Armenian journalist Hrant Dink.
 
The session titled "On Hrant Dink and Turkish-Armenian Relations" was organized by the presidents of the two associations, Professors Richard Hovannisian of UCLA and Andras Riedlmayer of Harvard. The panel attracted an overflow audience of more than 200 academics, including specialists in Turkish and Armenian studies as well as colleagues from other fields.
 
After remarks by both organizers, Dr. Hratch Tchilingirian of Cambridge University spoke on "Hrant Dink before Hrant Dink: Armenians in Turkey." He was followed by Dr. Fatma Müge Göçek of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, who discussed "Hrant Dink and Turkish-Armenian Dialogue." The third panelist was Professor Levon Zekiyan of Ca’ Foscari University in Venice, who assessed "Hrant Dink’s Innovative Approach to Armenian-Turkish Relations. Its Context, Challenge and Prospects."
 
The final presentation was by journalist Etyen Mahçupyan, who now edits Hrant Dink’s newspaper Agos, with his reflections on "Agos and the Hrant Dink Foundation: Looking at the Future."
 
The panel was filled with deep emotion and was received enthusiastically by the large, mixed audience.
 
The second SAS-sponsored panel, organized and chaired by Dr. Aida Boudjikanian of the University of Montreal, was on "Armenians in Canada: Productions and Transmission of Culture" and featured Canadian-Armenian scholars.
 
Dr. Nellie Hogikyan of the University of Montreal assessed the "Armenianness in Atom Egoyan’s Films"; Ph.D. candidate Gabriella Djerrahian of McGill University made "Preliminary Comparisons on a Diasporic Movement: Hip Hop from Here to There"; and Ph.D. candidate Viken Tufenkjian, also of the University of Montreal, presented "A Haze of Petals: The Propagation of Cultural Patrimony by Canadian-Armenian Writers." Dr. Sima Aprahamian of Concordia University served as the discussant.
 
Other Armenian-Related Panels
An SAS-affiliated panel made up of UCLA graduate students and supported by UCLA was "Death and Rebirth: Explorations of Transference in Armenian Literature from Medieval to Modern Times". Organized by Tamar Boyadjian with Myrna Doujian serving as discussant, the panel included Janelle M. Pulczinski who compared "Suicide as a Rite of Passage in Levon Shant’s Ancient Gods and Toni Morrison’s Song of Salomon"; Talar Chahinian on "Narrativizing the Genocide: A Case for Figurative Representation"; and Lilit Keshishyan on "Rewriting the Author: A Look at Aghassi Ayvazyan’s Sayat Nova, Gogol, and Van Gogh."
 
Ottoman Women's Movement panelSAS member Victoria Rowe of Chuo University in Japan organized "Ottoman Women’s Movements and Print Cultures", chaired by Sedef Arat-Koç of Ryerson University and with three of the papers focusing on Armenian topics. Sima Aprahamian of Concordia University examined "From Ottomanism to Turkish Nationalism and Beyond: A Brief History of Women’s Movement in Turkey"; Hasmik Khalapyan of the Central European University in Budapest spoke on "The Double Edges of Writing for Ottoman Armenian Women from Late 19th to Early 20th Century"; and Victoria Rowe presented "Gardens of Silihdar and Shirts of Flame: The Writings of Zabel Yesayian and Halide Edib Adivar." Anastasia Falierou of the French Institute for Anatolian Studies in Istanbul completed the panel with "Moral Modernism and the New Eve: Discourses on Woman in the Greek Orthodox Community (Late 19th and Early 20th Centuries)."        
                                                                                     
The SAS Annual Business Meeting
The annual meeting of the Society for Armenian Studies was held at the Palais des Congrès on November 17, 2007. Chaired by President Richard Hovannisian, the meeting was attended by some two dozen members of the Society and three additional members of the executive committee (Bedross Der Matossian, Anahid Aramouni Keshishian, and Hovann Simonian).
 
Professor Hovannisian announced the election of Bedross Der Matossian and Sylva Natalie Manoogian to the executive committee, succeeding outgoing members Robert Krikorian and Vahram Shemmassian. He was pleased to inform the audience that in the past year the number of members of the Society has risen significantly, from 205 to 240, an increase of more than 15 percent.
 
Among other topics discussed at the meeting were organization of SAS panels in 2008 at the conferences of MESA, the Central Eurasian Studies Society (CESS), American Historical Association (AHA) and American Association for the Advancement of Slavic Studies (AAASS); the status of the Avedissian Chair in Armenian Studies at Columbia University; the possibility of holding a separate multidisciplinary Armenian studies conference on the occasion of the 35th anniversary of the SAS; the establishment of an H-Armenian site for the exchange of scholarly information relating to Armenian studies; and the retention of the SAS Secretariat at California State University, Fresno.
Professor John Greppin of Cleveland State University announced the release of the sixteenth volumes of the Journal of the Society for Armenian Studies (JSAS). The new editor of the Journal is Professor Joseph Kechichian, and the new editors of the SAS Newsletter are Lilit Keshishyan and Myrna Douzjian of UCLA.
 
Press Release, 04 January 2008 (abridged)
Contact: 
Hovann Simonian (Email)  
 
Photos:
 
1- Fatma M. Gocek and Etienne Mahcupyan at the Hrant Dink panel. 
2- Paticipants in the panel on Ottoman women's movements. Left to right: Sedef Arat-Koç, Sima Aprahamian, Anastasia Falierou, Victoria Rowe and Hasmik Khalapyan.

Posted on Friday, January 04, 2008 (6474 reads), comments: 0
 
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