I am pleased to announce the publication of my book, Armenians Beyond Diaspora: Making Lebanon Their Own, by University of Edinburgh Press. I am hopeful that the book will be of interest to many of you.
From the book description:
A socio-political and cultural history of the Armenians in Cold War Lebanon
This book argues that Armenians around the world – in the face of the Genocide, and despite the absence of an independent nation-state after World War I – developed dynamic socio-political, cultural, ideological and ecclesiastical centres. And it focuses on one such centre, Beirut, in the postcolonial 1940s and 1950s.
Tsolin Nalbantian explores Armenians’ discursive re-positioning within the newly independent Lebanese nation-state; the political-cultural impact (in Lebanon as well as Syria) of the 1946–8 repatriation initiative to Soviet Armenia; the 1956 Catholicos election; and the 1957 Lebanese elections and 1958 mini-civil war. What emerges is a post-Genocide Armenian history of – principally – power, renewal and presence, rather than one of loss and absence.
- Explores Lebanese Armenians’ changing views of their place in the making of the Lebanese state and its wider Arab environment, and in relation to the Armenian Socialist Soviet Republic
- Challenges the dominant Armenian historiography, which treats Lebanese Armenians as a subsidiary of an Armenian global diaspora
- Contributes to an understanding of the development of class and sectarian cleavages that led to the breakdown of civil society in Lebanon from 1975
- Highlights the role of societal actors in the US–Soviet Cold War in the Middle East
- Challenges the tendency to read Middle East history through the lens of dominant (Arab) nationalisms
Tsolin Nalbantian, Ph.D.
University Lecturer, Modern Middle East History
Department of Middle Eastern Studies