Selected Works of Garegin Nzhdeh

(ISBN: 978-0-9783096-0-2)
2011 Montreal
162 pages
Size: 5 3/4" x 8 3/4"
Language(s): English

Additional Artists

These Selected Works of Garegin Nzhdeh have been chosen for an English translation for the first time. The texts represent his thoughts as well as his political and philosophical approaches. They cover the period from the early 1920s till his prison writings, in a Soviet prison camp, in the mid-‘50s. They also include an interview (1943) with Nzhdeh by “Razmik” newspaper of Sofia and a testimony by Nzhdeh. A chronological survey of his life and work, bibliographical sources and a glossary of place names complete this volume. The selected writings reflect the evolution of his thoughts shaped by the turbulent political events and the intense ideological battles that characterized most of the 20th century in the Armenian and international political scene. The Armenian national liberation struggle of late 19th and early 20th centuries, the worldview of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (Dashnaktsutiun), the struggle for survival of the First Republic of Armenia, and subsequently, its forced partition and sovietization had their impact upon the development of his political thinking and philosophy. Nzhdeh witnessed the collapse of the Ottoman Turkish and Tsarist Russian Empires, faced the destruction and the dispossession of Western Armenians during the First World War. He participated in the struggle for the independence and territorial unity of the first Republic of Armenia, and saw its forced partition, sovietization and its incorporation into the Soviet Union. Finally, as part of the Diaspora, he joined the struggle for national survival, experienced the Second World War and always focused on Armenia’s preservation and territorial unity. His fame was kept alive in the popular memory of Armenia, despite the prohibition of his name during the Soviet era (1921-1990). Nzhdeh possessed a strong personality and embodied three prominent talents: that of an orator, military strategist and philosopher. These attributes made him one of the outstanding Armenian political and military leaders of the first half of the 20th century. His political and intellectual achievements acquired significance, his legacy spreading during his lifetime and after. As a political and military leader, Nzhdeh played an important role in shaping the outcome of some of these events of modern Armenian history. He played a major role in organizing and leading the Armenian forces into reversing the trend in the battle of Gharakilisa in 1918, which became pivotal along with the decisive battles of Sardarabad and Bash-Abaran fought against the Ottoman Turkish army (Hambardzumian, 2005). The victorious struggle for Zangezur (1920 to 1921) under his leadership against the combined forces of the Red Army and Turco-Tatar reinforcements, secured for Armenia her southern territories in Siunik (Zangezur), bordering Iran thus creating a wedge between Turco-Tatars of eastern South Caucasus (subsequently identified as Azerbaijanis) and Turks of Turkey (Lernahayastani goyamarte, “Mountainous Armenia: the Battle for Survival”, 1923). His organization of the National Covenant (“Tseghakron”) movement, which constituted later the basis of the founding of the Armenian Youth Federation of the United States and Canada, affiliated with the A.R.F., prevented the assimilation of thousands of Armenian youth. According to R. Hampardzumian (2007), the texts point to his ideology: Christian Armenianism whose self-defence system focuses on David Bek’s, St.Vartan’s and the Mamikonian Covenant, revived by him in the ‘20s and the ‘30s. In this volume Nzhdeh raises many political, strategic, historical and social issues pertaining to the Armenian people in particular and to international developments in general. His Prison Writings and Self-Testimony reflect the culmination of his thoughts, reinforced by his experience. The selected texts also indicate Nzhdeh’s acquaintance with his contemporary European political, military and philosophical currents of thought. Certa

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