Hagop Oshagan: Speaking the Aghéd

Passages Home Blog

Oshagan's grave, Aleppo Oshagan’s grave, Aleppo

The week of April 24 has particular relevance to the life and work of Hagop Oshagan. He survived the Aghéd while many of his literary contemporaries fell victim to the Ottoman genocidal machine. In fact, and as Vahé Oshagan says, his figure stands at the juncture between the loss of the historic homeland and the beginning of the dispersion. But more than that, it was his work that was shaped by the Aghéd (a term he used in 1932 to describe what happened to the Armenians of the Empire). In the words of Krikor Beledian, Oshagan’s legacy is not defined by the fact that he survived the Aghéd, but that he confronted it, “opened thinking to its stupendous emptiness.” From this confrontation emerged a body of literature which is part testimony, part fiction, part myth, part autobiography, part recovery.

In private life, as his daughter (and…

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About Taline Voskeritchian

Writing teacher at Boston University; translator (from Arabic and Armenian); prose writer; occasional editor; incurable wanderer.
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