CSUN Armenian Studies to Host Genocide Conference

Oviatt Library at California State University, Northridge


NORTHRIDGE, Calif.—The Armenian Studies Program at the California State University, Northridge (CSUN) on Saturday, Jan. 31, will host a one-day conference from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on the theme of “The Armenian Genocide: Accounting and Accountability.” Held at CSUN’s Grand Salon, the event will constitute a part of the United Armenian Council of Los Angeles’ Armenian Genocide Centennial events, and will be dedicated to the generations of 1915 and 2015.

The morning session will include two panels. Entitled “Language as a Victim,” the first panel will be moderated by Dr. Hagop Gulludjian and will feature the following speakers and topics: Dr. Vartan Matiossian, “Pleading no Context: On Uses and Abuses of the Word Yeghern;” Prof. Barlow Der Mugrdechian, “Western Armenian Language and Literature in Exile: Genocide and Its Consequences;” and Dr. Shushan Karapetian, “The Burden of Language as a Moral Obligation.”

The second morning panel will deal with “Teaching Genocide,” with Dr. Rubina Peroomian moderating. Dr. Hasmig Baran will talk about “Content and Pedagogy of Genocide Education in the 21st Century: The Armenian Case;” Roxanne Makasjian about “Armenian Genocide Education in Secondary Schools Today;” and Dr. Kori Street about “Educating for Change: Using Testimonies in Teaching about Genocide.”

The third and fourth panels will be held in the afternoon session. Dr. Levon Marashlian will moderate the third panel, entitled “Those Who Were Forced to Assimilate.” It will feature the following speakers and subjects: Prof. Khatchig Mouradian, “Un-Hiding the Past: Myth-Making and the ‘Hidden Armenians’ of Turkey;” Dr. Elyse Semerdjian, “‘The Girl with the Cross Tattoo’: Field Notes on Crypto-Armenians;” and Dr. Vahram Shemmassian, “The Fate of Captive Armenian Genocide Survivors in Syria.”

The fourth panel, entitled “Legal Responses to Genocide-Related Liabilities,” will be conducted by the Armenian Bar Association (ABA). Garo Ghazarian, Esq., will introduce the ABA and its panelists, and Armen K. Hovannisian, Esq., will moderate the panel. The speakers and their topics will be: Saro Kerkonian, Esq., “Justice for Genocide and Challenges in United States Courts;” Edvin Minassian, Esq., “Justice for Genocide and Challenges in Turkey’s Courts;” and Karnig Kerkonian, Esq., “Justice for Genocide: Opportunities and Challenges in International Courts.” The conference will conclude with a commentary by Dr. Richard G. Hovannisian.

The conference is co-sponsored by the United Armenian Council of Los Angeles, the National Association of Armenian Studies and Research, the Knights of Vartan – Los Angeles County Chapters, the Armenian Bar Association, the Armenian General Benevolent Union, the Department of Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures at CSUN, and the Mousa Ler Association of California. Near East Relief posters will be exhibited during the conference by the Ararat-Eskijian Museum of Mission Hills, California.

The event is open to the public. The parking lot is G3 on Prairie Street (on campus) at Zelzah Avenue (near Nordhoff Street), Northridge. Parking tickets ($6.00 each) can be obtained at the information booth or via machines. For further information, please contact Dr. Shemmassian at vahram.shemmassian@csun.edu or (818) 677-3456.

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