Blog Archives

In Memoriam: George Bournoutian, Prolific and Dedicated Scholar

George Bournoutian (1943-2021)

BOSTON, MA – The National Association of Armenian Studies & Research (NAASR) joins with scholars and friends all over the world in mourning the passing of an esteemed colleague, Prof. George Bournoutian (1943-2021). While wishing to honor his stated wishes that no outpourings of sentiment follow his death, out of respect for his enormous contributions we offer this brief appreciation and extend our deepest sympathies to his family.

George Bournoutian was born and raised in Isfahan, Iran. Over the course of a long and productive career he published more than thirty books as author or translator which have been translated into many languages, and he taught at UCLA, Columbia University, Tufts University, New York University, Rutgers, University of Connecticut, and only recently retired after many years at Iona College.

Among his publications are The Khanate of Erevan Under Qajar Rule; A Concise History of the Armenian People; The History of Vardapet Arakel of Tabriz; Two Chronicles on the History of Karabagh; The Travel Accounts of Simeon of Poland; Jambr; The 1823 Russian Survey of the Karabagh Province: A Primary Source on the Demography and Economy of Karabagh in the Early 19th Century; A Brief History of the Aghuank Region; The 1829-1832 Russian Surveys of the Khanate of Nakhichevan; and Armenia and Imperial Decline: The Yerevan Province, 1900-1914.

George Bournoutian with Nancy Kolligian and Marc Mamigonian after a lecture in 2009

In addition to his writings, George was a prolific lecturer, giving innumerable talks including many for NAASR over the years in Belmont and all over the U.S. and Canada. He was also a world traveler and led NAASR’s first Armenian Heritage Tour in decades in 2006 to the Republic of Armenia and Historic Armenia.

In 2008, he enriched NAASR’s library immeasurably when he transferred his huge scholarly library, the Ani and George Bournoutian Collection, which has become a cornerstone of the Mardigian Library. NAASR, in turn, was proud to support his work through grants for several of his publications.

George Bournoutian with fellow 2006 NAASR Armenian Heritage Tour travelers George Krikorian, Nancy Kolligian, Judy Kolligian, Van Aroian, Mary Aroian, Bob Bejoian

Former NAASR Chairman Nancy Kolligian recalled that George “was an outstanding scholar who electrified the room when he entered it. I will remember going to Armenia and Historic Armenia with him on our 2006 NAASR trip—we had such a great time.” Current Chairman Yervant Chekijian remembered Bournoutian as “totally committed to the honest exploration of Armenia’s history

NAASR Academic Director Marc Mamigonian remarked that “George was warm, opinionated, unfiltered, brilliant, hilarious, and utterly indefatigable. He was always in the middle of a book project and excited about the next one. While it is difficult to accept that there will be no next book, no one can say that George Bournoutian didn’t get the most out of life, and he leaves an incredible legacy.”

Anyone who ever met George Bournoutian or heard one of his lectures could feel his energy and boundless vitality. Those qualities will endure in his huge scholarly output, which will continue to enrich us, and in our memories of him as a friend and a scholar. He will indeed be missed.

NAASR Webinar ‘Nagorno Karabakh/Artsakh in the Media: Perspectives from Around the Globe’ Tonight

The National Association for Armenian Studies and Research (NAASR) invites you to a webinar tonight at 6:00pm ET entitled “Nagorno-Karabakh/Artsakh in the Media: Perspectives from Around the Globe” with a panel of scholar analysts.

In light of the most recent developments, they will also be discussing the current situation.

This is a rescheduling of the program that was to have taken place on November 5.

This program co-sponsored by Armenian Center at Columbia University and the NAASR/Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation Lecture Series on Contemporary Armenian Issues.

You have the option of viewing the livestream on the NAASR YouTube channel or attending via Zoom: https://www.youtube.com/c/ArmenianStudies

To attend on Zoom, register in advance as capacity is limited. Zoom attendees can submit written questions via Zoom which will be asked as time permits. Zoom Registration link: https://bit.ly/3jF1zjE.

Dr. Richard Hovannisian to Present ‘The Smyrna Catastrophe, 1922-2013’ at Boca Raton’s St. David Armenian Church

The Smyrna Catastrophe, 1922-2013

An Illustrated Lecture by

Dr. Richard Hovannisian

Co-sponsorsed by St. David Armenian Church

&

The National Association for Armenian Studies and Research (NAASR)

Armenian Smyrna Cover

September, 2012 marked the 90th anniversary of the Smyrna catastrophe when much of the city, the second largest in the Ottoman Empire, was destroyed by fire four days after the Turkish army had occupied the city. The calamity, a part of the final phase of the Armenian Genocide, marked the end of a strong Christian presence in the historic Aegean coastal regions and turned hundreds of thousands of Greeks and Armenians into refugees.

In this illustrated lecture, Prof. Richard Hovannisian will discuss the important role of Smyrna (Izmir) in modern Armenian history and the inferno that engulfed the city in September, 1922. Hovannisian is the editor of the recently published Armenian Smyrna/Izmir, the eleventh volume of proceedings from the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) conference series “Historic Armenian Cities and Provinces.” He also traveled to Izmir and environs in June, 2012 as the historian-guide for a NAASR Armenian Heritage Tour led by Armen Aroyan.

Professor Hovannisian was the first holder of the Armenian Educational Foundation Chair in Modern Armenian History at UCLA. He currently serves as Distinguished Chancellor’s Fellow at Chapman University in Orange County, CA and Distinguished Visiting Lecturer at the University of California, Irvine. He is the author of Armenia on the Road to Independence, the four-volume history The Republic of Armenia, and has edited and contributed to more than twenty-five books including The Armenian Genocide in Perspective; The Armenian People from Ancient to Modern Times; Remembrance and Denial; Looking Backward, Moving Forward; and The Armenian Genocide: Cultural and Ethical Legacies.

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TIME & LOCATION

WHEN: Sunday, March 3, 2013 at 1:00 PM

WHERE: St. David Armenian Church, 2300 Yamato Rd., Boca Raton, FL 33431

The event is free and open to the public. A book signing of Armenian Smyrna/Izmir will immediately follow the lecture. For more information please contact St. David Armenian Church at (561) 994-2335 or stdavidarmchurch@bellsouth.net, or NAASR at 617-489-1610 or hq@naasr.org.