Creatively focused and noteworthyPhoto credit: Norayr Kasper, "I Will Talk to You About Time." Fotoistanbul 2015.
100 years in 10 days: (Re)Discovering Sasun and the beauty of the Armenian Highlands One of the few constants in my life has been Sasun, a land on which no living relative has ever set foot. In the summer of 2017, I had the opportunity to discover the homeland of my ancestors, and along the way, encountered a lost branch of my family tree— of our collective Armenian family. Our survivor great-grandparents would describe those who were “left behind” during the genocide. These Armenians remained in what became the Republic of Turkey and were forced to hide or completely forgo their Armenian identities, living out the rest of their days as Kurds or Turks. We had the privilege to meet with some of these “Hidden Armenians,” who taught us that, just as 19th-century Sasun is impossible to imagine without Armenians, an Armenian resurgence in 21st-century Sasun can only happen with their inclusion.
Uncovering the 'Hidden Road' to Armenia’s most isolated communities Too often, diasporans have admired Armenia from afar with an idealistic gaze, becoming disappointed when she does not meet their lofty expectations. The defeatist slogan of '"yerkiruh yerkir chi" (“the country is not a country”) propagated by locals has corroded many good efforts at cleansing the nation of its ills. But alongside the ringing nihilism, a vibrant, positive force has taken hold in Armenia. A new generation of diasporans and locals—the post-Soviet babies—has grown up with the nascent republic and, using youthful sensibility, is building a nation worthy of its citizens. One such example is the Hidden Road Initiative (HRI), a nonprofit aimed at supplying rural, mostly isolated villages in Armenia with the tools to live and thrive in their local environments
What’s in a language? A guide to moving beyond shame and finding love in our mother tongue As diasporans, we all know the drill: Speak Armenian, cook Armenian, marry Armenian—be as Armenian as you can in an unArmenian nation, so that our culture will not "disappear off the map." Being Armenian can, oftentimes, feel like a burden—but it does not have to be. If you’ve ever been scolded or made uncomfortable for not speaking Armenian, this guide will speak to you—in a welcoming, possibly therapeutic, way
Armenian survival songs: Our story(ies) in rhyme and resistance They say that music is the universal language, harmonizing humanity through the cadence of melody and the pulse of rhythm. Passed down through the centuries by storytellers, our folk songs have endured wars, migrations, genocide, and a host of other catastrophes, becoming the ultimate survivors of history. The new documentary, "Վերապրած երգեր | Survival Songs" tells the story of some of these songs through their children—our elders—and the importance of keeping them alive for following generations.