Gregory Aftandilian

BELMONT, MA — The National Association for Armenian Studies and Research (NAASR) will host an online panel talk by Gregory Aftandilian, “Recreating Kharpert in Massachusetts,” on Thursday, January 25, 2024, at 7:30 pm Eastern / 4:30 pm Pacific.

The webinar will be accessible live on Zoom (registration required) and on NAASR’s YouTube Channel.

There is a special connection between Armenian Americans of Massachusetts and the Ottoman province of Mamuret ul-Aziz, which the Armenians called Kharpert. Kharpert Armenians began arriving in Massachusetts, particularly in the Worcester area, beginning in the mid-19th century, though the bulk of the immigration resulted from the Hamidian massacres (1894-1896) and later the Armenian Genocide of 1915. The survivors of these calamities faced the fact that there were no homes or homeland to go back to. To ease such dislocations, the survivors settled in Armenian communities in America where their fellow provincial compatriots had already laid down roots. Social life among this generation was largely confined to people from their own province.

Gregory Aftandilian will consider how provincial identities from the former Ottoman Empire were so strong and durable for at least two generations in America, despite assimilation trends. Having lost everything in their homeland—family members, homes, farms and businesses—they did their best to recreate Kharpert in Massachusetts as a coping mechanism for the trauma they endured in addition to helping them adjust to a strange new land and society.

Gregory Aftandilian is Senior Professorial Lecturer at American University in Washington, D.C., where he teaches courses on U.S. foreign policy and Middle East politics. He spent over twenty years in U.S. Government service where he was a foreign policy advisor to Congressman Chris Van Hollen, professional staff member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and foreign policy adviser to Senator Paul Sarbanes, and foreign policy fellow to Senator Edward Kennedy. Prior to these Congressional positions, he served as a Middle East analyst in the State Department

Aftandilian is the author of the book Armenia: Vision of a Republic. The Independence Lobby in America, 1918-1927 and numerous articles on Armenian-American history.  He holds a B.A. in History from Dartmouth College, an M.A. in Middle Eastern Studies from the University of Chicago, and an M.Sc. in International Relations from the London School of Economics.  He served on NAASR’s Board of Directors from 2005-2019.

For more information contact NAASR at [email protected].

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sign Up for Our Newsletters

Get notified of the latest updates from MassisPost.

You May Also Like

Armenian Council of Europe Commends the French Parliament

On Thursday, France’s lower house of parliament approved a motion making it…

Text ARMENIA to 50555 – Donate $10 Through Your Cell Phone to Armenian Fund

LOS ANGELES, CA — Armenia Fund has announced that it began accepting…

Erdogan Slams France Over Armenian Genocide Recognition

ANKARA — Turkish Prime Recep Tayyip Erdogan angrily rejected on Tuesday French…

Daron Yacoubian Starring in Disney+ “Shop Class” Show

LOS ANGELES — Daron Yacoubian, son of Dr. Stephan and Maro Yacoubian…