The first of three free, public lectures exploring “The Armenian Genocide in Film: Theoretical and Comparative Perspectives” will be held at Fresno State beginning Wednesday, Feb. 11.
The talks will be presented by Dr. Myrna Douzjian, the Henry K. Khanzadian Kazan visiting professor of Armenian studies, who currently teaches comparative literature courses at the University of California, Los Angeles.
She will first discuss “The Genocide as Allegory in Serge Avedikian’s Chienned Histoire” at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 11 at the Alice Peters Auditorium, Room 191, in the Peters Business Building.
There will be a reception with free hors d’oeuvres from 6:30-7:30 p.m. in the University Business Center gallery outside the auditorium.
The series of lectures will explore three films and an audiovisual art installation in the context of the tension between fiction and history, said Dr. Barlow Der Mugrdechian, coordinator of Fresno State’s Armenian Studies Program.
Douzjian’s other two lectures will be “Atom Egoyan’s Ararat: Traumatic Histories and Transitional Identities” on Thursday, March 19 and “Reinventing the Genocide Documentary: Memories without Borders and Solemnity” on Wednesday, April 8.
“The lectures will demonstrate that these texts, though completely different in terms subgenre, complicate notions about interpreting the Armenian Genocide,” Der Mugrdechian said. “Taken together, the lectures assert that the filmic arts have a serious role to play in our understanding of the genocide, one that goes beyond the fetishization of history.”
The inaugural talk by Douzjian depicts the eradication of stray dogs in the city of Constantinople in 1910.
“The short animated film serves as a representation of the genocide of the Armenians,” Der Mugrdechian said.
Douzjian, who earned her Ph.D. in comparative literature from UCLA, has published translations of contemporary Armenian poetry and drama and regularly contributes articles dealing with diaspora Armenian film and culture to the syndicated column, “Critics’ Forum.” She has taught world literature and philosophical thought in the Intellectual Heritage Program at Temple University in Philadelphia.
Free parking is available after 7 p.m. at Fresno State in lots P5 and P6 near the University Business Center with a parking code from the Armenian Studies Program office.
For the code or for more information about the lecture, call 559.278.2669, or visit www.fresnostate.edu/armenianstudies.