Collection of short stories “Our Cross” released in LA

Collection of short stories “Our Cross” released in LA

PanARMENIAN.Net - “Our Cross,” a collection of short stories by M. Salpi, was recently released in Los Angeles, according to Asbarez.

Originally printed in 1921 in France under the title “Mer Khachu,” the book has been translated into English and published as the sixth volume of the Genocide Library.

M. Salpi is the pen name of Aram Sahakian, who was a doctor, writer, journalist, and political activist. His short stories, all based on actual persons and events, recount the personal experiences of Armenians from various walks of life, who grappled with the ravages of the Genocide.

As a medical officer in the Turkish army during the First World War, Sahakian met many Armenian soldiers and officers who recounted to him the plight of their families following the deportations and massacres of their communities at the hands of the Turkish government.

Later, while serving as a resident doctor at the Armenian refugee camp in Port Said, Egypt, as well as during his assignments and travels in Palestine, Lebanon, and Syria, Sahakian met numerous Genocide survivors who sought to rebuild their lives and reunite with loved ones. Sahakian found their experiences at turns heartbreaking and inspiring, and went on to depict them in his writings.

Complementing the astute observations of a man of science with the compassion and sensitivity of someone who himself had lived the devastation of 1915, Sahakian’s poignant stories pulsate with unforgettable images and characters, each a microcosm of a nation’s cataclysm but also its irrepressible will to endure.

“’Our Cross’ is a deeply felt chronicle of Sahakian’s experiences with and through the survivors, interspersed with his eloquent reflections on the enormity of his people’s loss,” writes Hagop Manjikian in the book’s foreword.

Translated by Ishkhan Jinbashian, Our Cross includes reproductions of illustrations from the book’s Armenian original.

The Armenian Genocide

The Armenian Genocide (1915-23) was the deliberate and systematic destruction of the Armenian population of the Ottoman Empire during and just after World War I. It was characterized by massacres, and deportations involving forced marches under conditions designed to lead to the death of the deportees, with the total number of deaths reaching 1.5 million.

The majority of Armenian Diaspora communities were formed by the Genocide survivors.

Present-day Turkey denies the fact of the Armenian Genocide, justifying the atrocities as “deportation to secure Armenians”. Only a few Turkish intellectuals, including Nobel Prize winner Orhan Pamuk and scholar Taner Akcam, speak openly about the necessity to recognize this crime against humanity.

The Armenian Genocide was recognized by Uruguay, Russia, France, Lithuania, the Italian Chamber of Deputies, majority of U.S. states, parliaments of Greece, Cyprus, Argentina, Belgium and Wales, National Council of Switzerland, Chamber of Commons of Canada, Polish Sejm, Vatican, European Parliament and the World Council of Churches.

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