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Re-membering Armenian Literature in the Soviet Borderlands

  • Author(s): Movsesian, Arpi
  • et al.

Published Web Location

https://doi.org/10.5070/T22144089Creative Commons 'BY-NC' version 4.0 license
Abstract

This article focuses on Armenian literature during the Soviet period and engages with the varied responses of Armenian writers to the Soviet imperialism from its periphery, with a particular eye to poets like Hovhannes Shiraz and Eghishé Charents, who, despite the censor’s unrelenting efforts to silence national discourse and remembrance of the Armenian Genocide, sought to rekindle the Armenian sense of self. This article also attempts to highlight the poetic sensitivity and daringness of those Armenian literati, such as Derenik Demirchian, Gurgen Mahari, and Kostan Zarian, who believed it was their duty to faithfully depict the current historical moment, even in the face of its inhumanity, as under Stalin, in order to preserve and re-member their nation’s past. Although a nation with millennia of literary history, Armenian literature remains virtually unknown outside the small group of Armenian speakers within the country and in its diaspora. This article hopes to shed some light on twentieth-century Armenian literary development and in the process counter the continued monopoly of Russian literature on Soviet  and post- Soviet literary discourse by expanding its imaginative territory.

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