The Armenians: From Kings and Priests to Merchants and Commissars

 
9781850656449: The Armenians: From Kings and Priests to Merchants and Commissars
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The Armenians traces the evolution of Armenia and Armenian collective identity from its beginnings to the Armenian nationalist movement over Gharabagh in 1988. Applying theories of national-identity formation and nationalism, Razmik Panossian analyzes different elements of Armenian identity construction and argues that national identity is modern, predominantly subjective, and based on a political sense of belonging. Yet he also acknowledges the crucial role of history, art, literature, religious practice, and commerce in preserving the national memory and shaping the cultural identity of the Armenian people.

Panossian explores a series of landmark events, among them Armenians' first attempts at liberation, the Armenian renaissance of the nineteenth century, the 1915 genocide of the Ottoman Armenians, and Soviet occupation. He shows how these influences led to a "multilocal" evolution of Armenian identity in various places in and outside of Armenia, notably in diasporan communities from India to Venice. Today, these numerous identities contribute to deep divisions and tensions within the Armenian nation, the most profound of which is the cultural divide between Armenians residing in their homeland and those who live in the United States, Canada, the Middle East, and elsewhere. Considering the diversity of this single nation, Panossian questions the theoretical assumption that nationalism must be homogenizing.

Based on extensive research conducted in Armenia and the diaspora, including interviews and translation of Armenian-language sources, The Armenians is an engaging history and an invaluable comparative study.

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Book Description:

This unique history and invaluable comparative study is based on extensive research conducted in both Armenia and the diaspora, including interviews and translations of Armenian-language sources. Razmik Panossian analyzes Armenians' first attempts at liberation, the Armenian renaissance of the nineteenth century, the 1915 genocide of the Ottoman Armenians, and Soviet occupation. He shows how these influences led to a "multilocal" evolution of Armenian national identity in various locations in and outside of Armenia, and how these numerous identities contribute to deep divisions and tensions within the Armenian nation today.

Panossian uses this history to argue that national identity is modern, predominantly subjective, and based on a political sense of belonging. Yet he also acknowledges the crucial role of history, art, literature, religious practice, and commerce in preserving the national memory and shaping the cultural identity of the Armenian people. Considering the diversity of this single nation, Panossian questions the theoretical assumption that nationalism must be homogenizing.

About the Author:

Razmik Panossian is the director of programmes and policy at Rights and Democracy in Canada.

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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9780231139267: The Armenians: From Kings and Priests to Merchants and Commissars

Featured Edition

ISBN 10: 0231139268 ISBN 13: 9780231139267
Publisher: Columbia University Press, 2006
Hardcover

9781850657880: Armenians

C Hurs..., 2006
Softcover