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Armenians Beyond DiasporaMaking Lebanon their Own$
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Tsolin Nalbantian

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781474458566

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2020

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9781474458566.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM EDINBURGH SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.edinburgh.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Edinburgh University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ESO for personal use.date: 18 April 2021

Repositioning Armenians in Newly Post-Colonial Nation-states: Lebanon and Syria, 1945–1946

Repositioning Armenians in Newly Post-Colonial Nation-states: Lebanon and Syria, 1945–1946

Chapter:
(p.44) 1 Repositioning Armenians in Newly Post-Colonial Nation-states: Lebanon and Syria, 1945–1946
Source:
Armenians Beyond Diaspora
Author(s):

Tsolin Nalbantian

Publisher:
Edinburgh University Press
DOI:10.3366/edinburgh/9781474458566.003.0002

Chapter 1 investigates Lebanese Armenians’ triangulations and balancing acts vis-à-vis the Lebanese state, its wider Arab environment, and the Armenian Socialist Soviet Republic (ASSR) around the time of Lebanon’s independence in the mid 1940s. I pursue this inquiry by closely analyzing Armenian language newspapers published in Beirut. These often ideologically opposed newspapers, the leftist Ararad, the communist Joghovourti Tzain, the capitalist yet supporter of the Armenian Socialist Soviet Republic (ASSR) Zartonk, and the firmly right-wing nationalist Dashnak Aztag reflected the issues of interest of the day. I explore four themes. The first is Armenians’ position in and vis-à-vis the Lebanese polity as well as vis-à-vis Syria. A second concerns language, and specifically the multiple roles of Arabic and its relationship with Armenian. The next one has to do with the ambiguities of spaces relevant for Armenians in and beyond Lebanon, including the ASSR. And a last one concerns the fascinating political positioning of the church that, although conservative, felt forced to support communist Armenia and the USSR as the ASSR’s protector.

Keywords:   Lebanon, Armenian Socialist Soviet Republic (ASSR), Syria, USSR, Communist Party, Arabic, Armenian Church, European Empires, Arab Nationalism, Armenian Political Parties

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