News & Events

SAS to Hold Annual Meeting and Conference in Washington D.C.

SAS Annual Membership Meeting
Saturday, November 18, 2017 • 3:00PM

and Conference on “Transmitting Western Armenian to the Next Generation”
Co-Sponsored by the Gulbenkian Foundation

The Society for Armenian Studies will hold its 44th Annual Meeting at 3:00PM
on Saturday, November 18, in the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel, Room Virginia
B (L), in Washington, D.C. All members are welcome to attend the Annual
Meeting, which is being held in conjunction with the Middle East Studies
Association (MESA) Annual Meeting.

Microsoft Word - Logos test-3.docxAn international conference, “Transmitting Western Armenian to the Next
Generation” will take place from noon-3:00PM on Saturday, November 18,
2017,immediately preceding the SAS Annual Meeting. The conference,
co-sponsored by the Society for Armenian Studies (SAS) and the Armenian
Communities Department of the Gulbenkian Foundation, will be also held in
the Virginia B (L) room of the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel.

The Conference will consist of two sessions and is open to the public. The
first session which starts at noon, is entitled “Teaching Armenian in a
Diasporan Context,” and will have three presentations. Ani Garmiryan (Senior
program officer for the promotion of Western Armenian language and
education, Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation) will speak on “It Takes a Village
to Raise a… Language.” She will be followed by Sylvia Kasparian (Université
de Moncton), “For a Multilingual Approach in Teaching Modern Western
Armenian in the Diaspora” and Jesse Arlen (UCLA), “Ո՞ւր են բանալիներդ—An
Innovative Method for Teaching Western Armenian in the Diaspora.”

The second session is entitled “Creative Literacy and Heritage Language: The
Case of Western Armenian” and also features three presentations: Hagop
Gulludjian (UCLA), “Promoting ‘Creative Literacy’”; Shushan Karapetian
(UCLA), “Eastern Armenian Speakers as Potential Western Armenian Learners:
Reflections on Second Dialect Acquisition”; and Elizabeth Mekhitarian
(UCLA), “To Create and Belong: A Case Study of Creative Writing in Heritage
Language Instruction.”

In addition to the Conference, the Society of Armenian Studies is sponsoring
two panels as part of MESA. The first panel, organized by Owen Miller and
Ümit Kurt, and entitled “The Great Fear of 1895: Armenian Reform, Rumor and
Violence Across the Ottoman Empire,” will take place from 8:00AM-10:00AM on
Sunday, November 19. Four papers will be given: Owen Miller (Emerson
College), “George Perkins Knapp of Bitlis and Massacres of 1895”; Emre Can
Dağlioğlu (Clark University), “Reform and Violence in the Hamidian Era: 1895
Anti-Armenian Riots in Trabzon”; Ümit Kurt (Harvard University), “Theaters
of Violence in the Ottoman Periphery: Tracing the Local Roots of Hamidian
Massacres in Aintab”; and Uğur Peçe (Bard College), “The Year of Rumor:
Crete in the Shadow of the Armenian Massacres of 1895.” The discussant for
the panel will be Edhem Eldem (Boğaziçi University).

The second panel, entitled “Humanitarianism in the Ottoman Empire During
World War I” is organized by Stacy Fahrenthold and will take place from
1:00PM-3:00PM on Tuesday, November 21. It is chaired by Barlow Der
Mugrdechian (California State University, Fresno), and includes papers by
Melanie S. Tanielian (University of Michigan), “Nourishing Bodies and Souls:
The Maronite Church’s Relief Effort in Mount Lebanon during the Great War”;
Stacy Fahrenthold (California State University, Stanislaus), “American
Relief and Émigré Politics in the Syrian Mahjar”; Asya Darbinyan (Clark
University), “Can Refugees Speak? Humanitarian Crisis at the Ottoman-Russian
border (1914-1917)”; and Khatchig Mouradian (Columbia University), “Not like
a Lamb to the Slaughter: Humanitarian Resistance during the Armenian Genocide.”

A reception, hosted by his Excellency Grigor Hovhannissian, Ambassador of
the Republic of Armenia to the U.S., will be held at the Armenian Embassy in
Washington D.C., at 6:00PM, on Saturday, November 18. More information about
the Reception will be sent to members soon.

Scholars will deliver a dozen other Armenian-themed papers during the course
of the MESA conference, November 18-21. For a full program of their
sessions, please visit their website at

Barlow Der Mugrdechian
SAS President