Not everything in NAASR’s Mardigian Library is a book. There are also, among other things, a huge number of recordings—78s, LPs, tapes, CDs, etc., all with some Armenian connection or another. Some of these will be topics of future installments; most of them are obscure, except to specialists and collectors. For this installment we will go in a totally different direction and focus on a record that was a huge hit in its day, and its Armenian connections.
Fifty-five years ago, April 1965, can truly be seen as,in the words of author (and NAASR Board member) Michael Bobelian, “the birth of the modern campaign of justice” for the Armenian Genocide. 1965 may also be seen as the year of the re-birth of efforts to document the Armenian Genocide, which would lead to the creation, in more recent years, of a growing body of scholarship on the Genocide.
Franz Werfel’s novelDie Vierzig Tage des Musa Dagh(The Forty Days of Musa Dagh), originally published in Berlin by Paul Zsolnay Verlag in 1933, is undoubtedly the most famous work of literature that focuses on the Armenian Genocide. We pause to remember the contribution Werfel (1890-1945) made, in the year 2020 which marks the 130thanniversary of his birth and the 75thanniversary of his death.
To bring the treasures of NAASR’s rare book Mardigian Library to you, we are featuring some extraordinary masterpieces from our 30,000 volume collection. For Easter week, we have chosen Bats‘atrut‘iwn sharakanats‘: Ork‘ pashtin i hasarakats‘ zhamakargut‘ean Hayastaneayts‘ Ekeghets‘woy (Բացատրութիւն շարականաց: Որք պաշտին ի հասարակաց ժամակարգութեան Հայաստանեայց Եկեղեցւոյ), by Gabriel Awetikean (Գաբրիէլ Աւետիքեան), published in 1814 at San Lazzarro in Venice (Վենետիկ Ի Վանս Սրբոյ Ղազարոյ). The book is 807 pages long and is 27 cm. in height.