Armenian Literature

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The Armenian literary tradition began early in the fifth century A.D. with religious tracts and histories of the Armenians. The most important of these were written by Agathangelos, Egishe, Movses Khorenatsi, and Pavstos Buzand. A secular literature developed in the early modern period, and in the eighteenth century Armenian Catholic monks of the Mekhitarist order began publishing ancient texts, modern histories, grammars, and literature. In the nineteenth century, Armenians developed their own journalism and public theater. Khachatur Abovian wrote the first Armenian novel, Verk Hayastani (The Wounds of Armenia), in the early 1840s. Armenian literature and drama often depict struggles against religious and ethnic oppression and the aspirations of Armenians for security and self-expression.

Azad Hye

Azad Hye, United Arab Emirates
Oct 29 2005

Syrian Armenians: Special issue of Foreign Literatures dedicated to the Armenian Literature

AZAD-HYE (Dubai): "Foreign Literatures" (Al Adab Al Ajnabiya), the 30 year old prestigious periodical of the Arab Writers' Union (Damascus, Syria), has dedicated its Summer 2005 Edition (issue no. 123) to the Armenian literature.

In the introduction of the issue, the Managing Editor of the publication Dr. Housein Jumaa points out in an article titled "The great value of the literature of other nations", to the significance of the project in terms of comparative literature and underlines that it is about a "literature that belongs to a nation living in geographic proximity to Syria, particularly in the district of Aleppo, a city that enjoyed a great deal of attention from Armenian historians such as the 12th century Matthew of Edessa (Matteos Urhayetsi), author of "The Chronicle".

After mentioning the Western contribution in the progress of Oriental Studies, Dr. Jumaa refers to other Schools, such as the Russian and Armenian Orientalism.

Dr. Jumaa concludes that every kind of genuine writings aim at reaching readers belonging to all nations, locations and periods of time. He concluded that the Syrian readers have to be aware of foreign literatures as an important step in the process of development and reformation.

Soon after the introduction, the Head of the Armenian Apostolic Church in Aleppo, Bishop Shahan Sarkissian writes an article that highlights the value of the Armenian oriental studies under the title: "The contribution of Orientalism to humanity / the example of the Armenian studies".

Following is the list of the remaining articles in the issue: (See the content in Arabic at: http://www.awu-dam.org/adabagnaby/ind-adab123.htm )

Essay

-"Brief glimpse of the old Armenian poetry (8th century AD)", prepared by Houry Azezian. -"Armenian Proverbs", translated by Hagop Michaelian. -"Interview with William Saroyan (1908-1981)", by Zori Balayan, translated by Nabil Al-Moujalla.

Short Story

  • "Painter Varoujan Artounian", by Kapriel Takvorian, translated by Haroutyoun Kahvedjian.
  • "Armenia is my roots", by Asdghig Tchamkerten, translated by Abdallah Hajjar.
  • "He was a different person (forgive me mother because I wrote about your beloved Bedo)", by Simon Simonian, translated by Hrach Kalsahakian.
  • "It is God's command", by Simon Simonian, translated by Mihran Minassian.
  • "The mountain violet", by Aksel Pagounts, translated from the English language by Taoufik Al Asadi.
  • "The white lamb", by Sero Khanzadian, translated from the English language by Taoufik Al Asadi.
  • "Love story", by Avetik Isahakian, translated by Hrach Kalsahakian.
  • "Consolation", by Avetik Isahakian, translated by Hrach Kalsahakian.

Poetry

  • Poetry of Sayat Nova, translated by Berdjouhi Avedian.
  • Poet Nerses Shnorhali [St. Nerses the Gracious (1102-1172)], by Srpouhi Hairabedian, translated by Nizar Khalili.
  • Celebrities of modern Armenian poetry, translated by Nabil Al Moujalla.

Theatre

  • From the Armenian satire: Hagop Baronian (1891-1843), translated by Nora Arissian.
  • Author and theatrical writer Levon ShantþFrom the philosophical and psychological to the historical and vice versa, by Khatchig Arslanian.
  • "Vart Shoushan" (1867), theatrical piece by Bedros Tourian, translated by Houda Antypa and Vartan Dermendjian.

At the end of this article we would like to acknowledge the role that Dr. Nora Arissian played in coordinating the publishing of this important reference of Armenian literature in Arabic.

See also




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