GLENDALE – Local literary critic, analyst, and longtime lecturer of English Language and Literature at the California State University of Los Angeles, Dr. Arpi Sarafian will present her newly released book titled, Endless Crossings: Reflections on Armenian Art and Culture in Los Angeles on Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 7:30pm at Abril Bookstore – 415 E. Broadway, Glendale, CA. Author will be introduced by Prof. Osheen Keshishian. Admission is free with reception to follow. For more information, call (818) 243-4112.
In a wide-ranging and diverse mix of essays published over a span of over thirty years, Sarafian explores the complexities of the immigrant experience. In a new definition of reality, she contends, survival requires the negotiation of several worlds. “Ethnic” is past its definition of the clash of two cultures. Indeed, deconstructing the ethnic/mainstream polarity, that is removing Armenianness, and by extension any other ethnicity, from opposition to the “System” may well be the only hope for survival, if at all possible, for Armenians in the Diaspora. Sarafian would like to see the hyphen dropped from Armenian-American (as well as from Chinese-American, Mexican-American or from any other hyphenated American) as it creates a hierarchy which inevitably leads to the valuing of the so-called “majority” culture and the belittling of the “other,” the “lesser” culture. A rich and vibrant culture like ours is capable of continual renewal and cannot but find its way into the mainstream. Thus, rather than deplore the gradual loss of our ethnic identity, we could help make “ethnic” a relative term with no stigma attached to it.
The book covers a wide range of subjects such as literary figures including Leon Zaven Surmelian, Peter Najarian, Micheline Aharonian Marcom, Aris Janigian, Garin Hovannisian, Tina Demirjian and David Kherdian, artists Kardash Onnig and Seeroon Yeretzian, musicians Arpine and George Pehlivanian, and various theatrical performances, art exhibits, and conferences which have taken place in Los Angeles.
Arpi Sarafian holds a Ph.D. from the University of Southern California and a B.A. and M.A. from the American University of Beirut. She was a lecturer in English Language and Literature at the California State University, Los Angeles from 1978 to retirement in 2014. Sarafian has also taught at the California State University, Dominguez Hills and at Loyola Marymount University. She has published articles in The Armenian Observer, Ararat Literary Quarterly, The Armenian Mirror-Spectator, Armenian International Magazine (AIM), Virginia Woolf Miscellany, Publication of the Modern Language Association (PMLA), Journal of the Society of Armenian Studies (JSAS) and the Los Angeles Times.
Presented by Abril Bookstore and Tekeyan Cultural Association.