On April 28th, 2017, The Initiative in Holocaust, Genocide, and Memory Studies and the Future of Trauma and Memory Studies Reading Group at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign will host a one day conference titled “Spaces of Remembering the Armenian Genocide,” featuring presentations by Myrna Douzjian, Talar Chahinian, Nancy Kricorian, and Scout Tufankjian. The conference will close with a screening of Armenoscope: constructing belonging, which will be followed by a conversation with the docu-essay’s director, Silvina Der-Meguerditchian.
This event aims to foster interdisciplinary and transnational discussions on remembering the Armenian Genocide across time, space, and place. It will address how memories of this genocide travel across media and form (film, literature, art, and photography) and how they are referenced across intersectional lines to also bring to the fore other histories of collective violence.
The conference and film screening are free and open to the public. It will take place on the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign campus, with the main conference during the day in the Foreign Languages Building and the film screening in the afternoon in the English Building. Please see schedule below for links to campus maps and more information on speakers.
9:00 am to 2:30 pm Conference in Lucy Ellis Lounge, Room 1080 Foreign Languages Building, 707 S Matthews Avenue
9:00-9:30 am Welcome, coffee and pastries provided
9:30-10:15 am Helen Makhdoumian and Dilara Çalışkan (UIUC)
"These Lands Bare Witness: Activating Armenian Genocide Memories."
Introduction: Tamara Chaplin (UIUC)
10:15-11:00 am Myrna Douzjian (Lecturer, Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures at UC Berkeley)
“A Photograph Resists Archivization: Reading Hrayr Anmahouni and Anahid Kassabian's Solemnity”
Introduction: David Cooper (UIUC)
11-11:45 am Talar Chahinian (Lecturer, Department of Comparative World Literature, California State University, Long Beach)
“In Search of a Lost Archive: The Orphaned Generation's Literary Response to the Genocide”
Introduction: Marcus Keller (UIUC)
11:45 am–1:00 pm Vegetarian lunch provided
1:00-1:45 pm Scout Tufankjian (Brooklyn-based photographer)
“The Armenian Diaspora Project”
Introduction: Brett Kaplan (UIUC)
1:45-2:30 pm Nancy Kricorian (New York City-based Writer and Organizer)
“Writing as Restoration Project”
Introduction: Helen Makhdoumian (UIUC)
3:00-5:00 pm Film Screening and Discussion, Room 304 English Building, 608 South Wright Street
Armenoscope: contructing belonging
A docu-essay by Silvina Der-Meguerditchian (Berlin-based Visual and Performance Artist and Artistic Director of the Houshamadyan Project)
Introduction: Dilara Çalışkan (UIUC)
The event is co-sponsored by: Beckman Institute, Center for Advanced Study, Center for South Asian and Middle Eastern Studies, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Department of English, Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures, Department of History, European Union Center, Graduate College, National Association for Armenian Studies and Research, Program in Comparative and World Literatures, Russian, East European, and Eurasian Center, School of Literatures, Cultures, and Languages
To stay updated on the event, please visit the Facebook event and return to this website.
Questions about the event can be directed to Helen Makhdoumian and Dilara Çalışkan at: email@example.com
Myrna Douzjian holds a Ph.D. in comparative literature from the University of California, Los Angeles. Her work examining the politics of twentieth-century Armenian literary production has been published in a volume on Armenian Philology in the Modern Era. She has also published translations of contemporary Armenian poetry and drama, and several of her translations have been staged in the U.S. Her current research focuses on critical approaches to the study of world literature and post-Soviet literary culture. Dr. Douzjian has taught literature, composition, literary theory, and film at UCLA, Temple University, and California State University, Fresno. She is currently Lecturer in the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures at UC Berkeley, where she teaches courses on Armenian literature, culture, and film.
Talar Chahinian holds a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from UCLA and lectures in the Department of Comparative World Literature at California State University, Long Beach. Her research interests include transnational studies, Western Armenian language and literature, francophone literature, politics and aesthetics, and translation. She served as assistant editor of Armenian Review (2012-2016). She contributes regularly to the online journal, Critics’ Forum, and is the co-editor of Diaspora: A Journal of Transnational Studies.
Nancy Kricorian is a New York City-based writer and organizer. She is the author of the novels Zabelle, Dreams of Bread and Fire, and most recently All The Light There Was, which is set in the Armenian community of Paris during World War II. Her poetry and essays have been published in journals such as MINNESOTA REVIEW, PARNASSUS, WITNESS, and WOMEN’S STUDIES QUARTELY, and have appeared online at GUERNICA, ALTERNET, ARMENIAN WEEKLY, MONDOWEISS, PEN World Voices Online Anthology, and other outlets.
Although she has spent the bulk of her career working in the Middle East, Scout Tufankjian is best known for her work documenting the Barack Obama campaigns, and her book on the 2007-2008 campaign, Yes We Can: Barack Obama's History-Making Presidential Campaign was a New York Times and LA Times bestseller. In the summer of 2012, she returned to the campaign trail as a photographer for President Barack Obama's re-election campaign, where she took an image of the President and the First Lady hugging that shattered all social media records at the time. Her new book, There is Only the Earth: Images from the Armenian Diaspora Project, is the culmination of six years documenting Armenian communities in over 20 different countries. She is a two-time TUMO workshop leader and has recently worked in Spain on the set of the film The Promise, and in Nagorno-Karabakh for the HALO Trust. More of her work can be seen at www.scouttufankjian.com.
The artist is the granddaughter of Armenian immigrants to Argentina; since 1988, she has lived in Berlin. Her artistic work deals with issues related to the burden of national identity, the role of minorities in society and the potential of a space “in between.” Der-Meguerditchian is interested in the impact of migration on the urban texture and its consequences. Reconstruction of the past and the building of archives are a red thread in her artistic research. Her work is multidisciplinary and uses different media. Since 2010, she has served as the artistic director of Houshamadyan (www.houshamadyan.org), a project to reconstruct Ottoman Armenian town and village life. In 2014/15 she was awarded a fellowship through the Kulturakademie Tarabya, a residency program of the German Foreign Ministry and the Goethe Institute in Istanbul. Furthermore, she participated in “Armenity,” the Pavilion awarded the Golden Lion at the 56th Venice Biennale for best national participation. Her work has been shown in many exhibitions around the world, including, among others, Germany, Argentina, USA, and Turkey. Her last initiated and coordinated collective project, “Grandchildren, new geographies of belonging” (DEPO Cultural Center), closed its doors last November 1st in Istanbul.
Tamara Chaplin (Associate Professor of History, UIUC)
David Cooper (Associate Professor of Slavic Languages and Literatures and Director of Russian, East European and Eurasian Center, UIUC)
Brett Kaplan (Professor of Comparative and World Literatures and Director of the Program in Jewish Culture and Society and The Initiative in Holocaust, Genocide, and Memory Studies, UIUC)
Marcus Keller (Associate Professor and Department Head of French and Italian, UIUC)
Helen Makhdoumian (Graduate Student in English and Co-Organizer of The Future of Trauma and Memory Studies, UIUC)
Dilara Çalışkan (Graduate Student in Anthropology, UIUC)
Illinois Jewish Studieswww.facebook.com/IllinoisJewishStudies/
The Initiative in Holocaust, Genocide, and Memory Studies
is an interdisciplinary program based at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Founded in 2009 and located within the Program in Jewish Culture and Society, HGMS provides a platform for cutting-edge, comparative research, teaching, and public engagement related to genocide, trauma, and collective memory.