New Publication: Bone Memory

I am pleased to announce the publication of my new article titled “Bone Memory:  The Necrogeography of the Armenian Genocide in Dayr al-Zur, Syria” with the Journal of Human Remains and Violence this past summer.  It is part of a new book I am writing titled Remnants: Gender, Islamized Armenians, and the Collective Memory of the Armenian Genocide.  The article explores how Armenians have collected, displayed, and exchanged the bones of their murdered ancestors in formal and informal ceremonies of remembrance in Dayr al-Zur, Syria.  I argue that these bone rituals, displays, and vernacular memorials are enacted in spaces of memory that lie outside of official state memorials, making unmarked sites of atrocity more legible.  I read some essays written shortly after the genocide and interviewed Armenians who traveled there before war erupted in Syria in 2011.   I was able to publish this amazing 1938 photograph of Haroutyun Hovakimyan, holding a skull in his hand, in my essay with permission from the Armenian Genocide Museum Institute.  He led this expedition to unearth Armenian remains in Dayr al-Zur and my research has shown that those same bones were used in the memorial at Dayr al-Zur once it was constructed in 1990.  You can access the full article on my Academia.edu site here.

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