WATERTOWN—The Hamazkayin Armenian Educational and Cultural Society of Eastern United States is pleased to announce the winner of the third Minas and Kohar Tölölyan Prize in Contemporary Literature. Ms. Aline Ohanesian was chosen for her work entitled Orhan’s Inheritance.
Ms. Ohanesian was born in Kuwait and immigrated to Southern California at the age of three. After getting her MA in History, she abandoned her PhD studies when she realized her heart belonged to writing. She was the finalist for the PEN Bellwether Award for Socially Engaged Fiction and the Glimmer Train Best New Writers Award. Orhan’s Inheritance is her first novel and is currently being translated into several languages. Aline is an alumna of the Bread Loaf and Squaw Valley Writer’s conferences. She lives in San Juan Capistrano, CA with her husband and two young sons.
Named after one of the major Armenian literary critics of the second half of the Twentieth century and his wife, a devoted teacher of that literature for decades, the annually awarded Minas and Kohar Tölölyan Prize in Contemporary Literature recognizes the work produced by talented writers working in North America. The prize is intended to encourage new work in all the major genres of literary production, as they are currently understood in North America. Works in Armenian, English, French and Spanish are considered, as long as the authors are of Armenian ancestry, and/or the work has an Armenian theme or revolves around an Armenian topic.
Dr. Ara Nazarian initiated this prize a number of years ago for the primary purpose of encouraging and offering recognition through the award and the ensuing publicity to those who wish to write on Armenian topics. There is also a financial award of $1,500 per winner, associated with the prize, made possible through the generosity of Mr. and Mrs. Edward and Vergine Misserlian of San Francisco, CA.
The jury consists of Dr. Sima Aprahamian (Montreal), Ms. Anoush Agnerian (Montreal), Dr. Vartan Matiossian (New York/New Jersey), Mr. Gourgen Arzoumanian (California), and Mr. Yervant Kotchounian (California).
The winners of the Prize were announced at Hamazkayin’s Annual Pan Gathering on June 6, 2015 in Providence, R.I. by chairman of the Hamazkayin Eastern Regional Executive, Dr. Dikran Kazandjian.