Announcement

Collapse

Forum Rules (Everyone Must Read!!!)

1] What you CAN NOT post.

You agree, through your use of this service, that you will not use this forum to post any material which is:
- abusive
- vulgar
- hateful
- harassing
- personal attacks
- obscene

You also may not:
- post images that are too large (max is 500*500px)
- post any copyrighted material unless the copyright is owned by you or cited properly.
- post in UPPER CASE, which is considered yelling
- post messages which insult the Armenians, Armenian culture, traditions, etc
- post racist or other intentionally insensitive material that insults or attacks another culture (including Turks)

The Ankap thread is excluded from the strict rules because that place is more relaxed and you can vent and engage in light insults and humor. Notice it's not a blank ticket, but just a place to vent. If you go into the Ankap thread, you enter at your own risk of being clowned on.
What you PROBABLY SHOULD NOT post...
Do not post information that you will regret putting out in public. This site comes up on Google, is cached, and all of that, so be aware of that as you post. Do not ask the staff to go through and delete things that you regret making available on the web for all to see because we will not do it. Think before you post!


2] Use descriptive subject lines & research your post. This means use the SEARCH.

This reduces the chances of double-posting and it also makes it easier for people to see what they do/don't want to read. Using the search function will identify existing threads on the topic so we do not have multiple threads on the same topic.

3] Keep the focus.

Each forum has a focus on a certain topic. Questions outside the scope of a certain forum will either be moved to the appropriate forum, closed, or simply be deleted. Please post your topic in the most appropriate forum. Users that keep doing this will be warned, then banned.

4] Behave as you would in a public location.

This forum is no different than a public place. Behave yourself and act like a decent human being (i.e. be respectful). If you're unable to do so, you're not welcome here and will be made to leave.

5] Respect the authority of moderators/admins.

Public discussions of moderator/admin actions are not allowed on the forum. It is also prohibited to protest moderator actions in titles, avatars, and signatures. If you don't like something that a moderator did, PM or email the moderator and try your best to resolve the problem or difference in private.

6] Promotion of sites or products is not permitted.

Advertisements are not allowed in this venue. No blatant advertising or solicitations of or for business is prohibited.
This includes, but not limited to, personal resumes and links to products or
services with which the poster is affiliated, whether or not a fee is charged
for the product or service. Spamming, in which a user posts the same message repeatedly, is also prohibited.

7] We retain the right to remove any posts and/or Members for any reason, without prior notice.


- PLEASE READ -

Members are welcome to read posts and though we encourage your active participation in the forum, it is not required. If you do participate by posting, however, we expect that on the whole you contribute something to the forum. This means that the bulk of your posts should not be in "fun" threads (e.g. Ankap, Keep & Kill, This or That, etc.). Further, while occasionally it is appropriate to simply voice your agreement or approval, not all of your posts should be of this variety: "LOL Member213!" "I agree."
If it is evident that a member is simply posting for the sake of posting, they will be removed.


8] These Rules & Guidelines may be amended at any time. (last update September 17, 2009)

If you believe an individual is repeatedly breaking the rules, please report to admin/moderator.
See more
See less

Baliozian reviewed

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Baliozian reviewed

    http://www.reporter.am/go/article/20...e-armenians-yo

    Ara Baliozian reads the Armenians, yo’
    by Christopher Atamian

    Published: Saturday April 18, 2009


    Ara Baliozian (file photo).

    "Lying is done with words and also silence."

    -Adrienne Rich

    The poetic genre known as the aphorism goes back at least to Hippocrates, in 5th-century B.C.E. Greece. The word aphorism derives from the Greek aphorismos and denotes an original and easily remembered thought, expression, or witticism. Popular aphorists of the past include Pascal, La Rochefoucauld, and Erasmus. Armenians have a practitioner of this rarefied art as well, and he goes by the name of Ara Baliozian.

    The author of some 20 books of prose, poetry, and plays, as well as translations of Armenian writers such as Zabel Yessayan and Kostan Zarian, Baliozian was born in Athens, attended the now-xdefunct College Moorat-Raphael in Venice, and currently resides in Kitchener, Ontario. His newest work, a slim volume (56 pages) titled Pertinentes Impertinences, is a series of reflections and aphorisms in French translated from English by Denis Donikian, Mireille xBesnilian, and Dalita Roger, and published last year by Arvesd Aysor in Yerevan.

    Baliozian writes about a wide range of topics and people, though he seems particularly at home when perhaps justifiably lambasting Armenian politicians and leaders. Baliozian takes no prisoners - intellectual or otherwise. This hasn't necessarily made him the most popular writer in the Armenian diaspora, though an increasing number of people now read his work with passion and a deep-seated sense of appreciation for his daring to say what so many others think. Whether Baliozian's views represent those of an enlightened minority or of a silent majority, his work should be read by every Armenian, especially when they are young and in their formative stages, as a means of opening their minds to different ideas and ways of thinking about their culture.

    In a sense, Baliozian is heir to the Armenian writers before him who dared to analyze and constructively criticize Armenian society. The Armenian mind that Baliozian deconstructs so ably is a direct descendant of the mentality that Hagop Oshagan describes in novels such as Mnatsortats and Haji Murad and that Constantinopolitan writers such as Krikor Zohrab wrote about before the Catastrophe of 1915. "If you want to understand Armenians," Baliozian writes, "don't read their nationalist historians; read instead a history of Armenian literature. The only reason we don't burn writers the way Indians burn widows is that we prefer to ignore them, which amounts to burying them alive." Baliozian on the sacred cows of Armenian culture: "Because I refuse to share their obsession with massacres and money, they call me negative. One way to be positive in their eyes is to adopt ‘Yes, sir!' as a mantra.'" (Both quoted from baliozian.blogspot.com. All quotes that follow are from Pertinentes Impertinences.)

    Baliozian's oeuvre is in point of fact rather subversive. He uses repetition to his advantage and hammers away at his iconoclastic thoughts and ideas in the same way that the Armenian press and powers that be have drilled their own propaganda into Armenian minds and hearts for centuries now. It's a welcome counterbalance. While no one would deny, for example, the terrible suffering that successive Ottoman and Turkish governments have inflicted on Armenians and on the Armenian psyche, Baliozian is quick to confront the type of knee-jerk anti-Turkism that portrays Turks as somehow more cruel or barbaric by nature than others: "Our magazines regularly publish so many anti-Turkish commentaries that if our editors were to define what it means to be Armenian, I would imagine they would define it as hating Turks. And to think that these are the exact same people who criticize me under the pretext that I am a repetitive pessimist." (p. 18)

    Baliozian's writing is also an intelligent and sometimes humorous call to introspection and societal self-criticism: "An Armenian-American composer admitted to me one day: ‘I hope that Armenians won't support me. I'd be grateful if they spared me their hostility.'" (p. 49) When analyzing the current Armenian craze for all things Gorky, Baliozian recalls the following: "Speaking of Arshile Gorky, one of our elder statesmen once told me: ‘Not a single Armenian bought a painting from Gorky while he was alive.'?" (p. 49)

    The author is at his most incisive when taking on taboos in Armenian intellectual history and commenting on the behavior of certain contemporary leaders: "Our charlatans tell us that our patrons, bishops, and do-gooders know better than we do because they speak in the name of God and Capital. And when God and Capital speak, the scribblers are meant to shut their mouths and listen. Otherwise their mouths must be shut for them, that is to say, cut their tongues cut out, in good old Ottoman fashion." (p. 27)

    There is isn't much to criticize about Pertinentes Impertinences apart from the fact that Baliozian, perhaps weary of repeating the same mantras that go unheeded, may indeed at times begin to sound repetitive. Baliozian's observations, however, are about as close as any contemporary Armenian writer comes to getting at the truth of things. And as the commonplace aphorism states, the truth will set you free. A fitting coda to this piece and to Baliozian's work comes from Kingsley Amis, whom the author quotes as saying: "If you don't disturb anybody with what you write, then I think there's no point in writing." (p. 47)
    Between childhood, boyhood,
    adolescence
    & manhood (maturity) there
    should be sharp lines drawn w/
    Tests, deaths, feats, rites
    stories, songs & judgements

    - Morrison, Jim. Wilderness, vol. 1, p. 22
Working...
X