UCLA November Forum Features Three Turkish Scholars on Armenia’s during Ottoman Empire

LOS ANGELES–A forum "Three Turkish Voices on the Ottoman Armenia’s" will bring together three Turkish scholars at UCLA on Sunday–November 6–from 2:00 to 5:30 PM–to discuss the Armenian genocide.

Commenting on the event–organizer Professor Richard Hovannisian said–"the forum will bring to UCLA three Turkish scholars who are examining the causes–responsibility–and consequences of what happened to the Armenian population during the final decades of the Ottoman Empire and the first years of the Republic of Turkey. They figure among the growing number of Turkish intellectuals who seek to crack the wall of official Turkish denial. They are prepared to challenge the state-sponsored narrative of events and thereby advance the quest for truth and the evolving process Armenian-Turkish dialogue." Hovannisian is the Armenian Educational Foundation Chair in Modern Armenian History at UCLA.

Dr. Taner Akam of the Department of History–University of Minnesota–will present "A New Assessment of the Ottoman Documents," giving examples of the important evidence that can be found in the archives despite extensive purging.

He is a pioneering author of many publications in Turkish–German–and English relating to the fate of the Armenian people–including–"From Empire to Republic: Turkish Nationalism and the Armenian Genocide."

Dr. Elif Shafak of the Department of Near Eastern Studies–University of Arizona–will discuss "Memory and Literature." She is a novelist who writes and publishes both in Turkish and in English. The daughter of a member of the Turkish diplomatic corps–she has reflected: "Faced with hatred–I hated back. But that was as far as my feelings went. It took me years to ask the simple question: Why did the Armenia’s hate us?"

Dr. Fatma Mge Gek of the Department of Sociology and Program in Women’s Studies–University of Michigan–will report on the recent conference in Istanbul on the Ottoman Armenia’s. She was among the organizers of that conference that convened belatedly in September and has also been a co-organizer of Armenian-Turkish workshops in Chicago–Ann Arbor–and Salzburg–Austria.

A discussion period will follow presentations. For additional information–email Professor Hovannisian at Hovannis@history.ucla.edu or telephone in the morning hours (310)825-3375.

The program is organized by Professor Hovannisian–with the cooperation of the GE Von Grunebaum Center for Near Eastern Studies.

It will be held in the Court of Sciences 50 (Young Hall)–with parking available in Structure 2–located on Hilgard Avenue at Westholme. The event is open to the public and free of charge.

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