The first Monday of every month is “Armenian Symposium Day” at St. Nersess. All are invited to a true symposium--a gathering around a table where food and drink for both the mind and body are served, and where all “drink together” from the sources of Armenian culture and history. The word symposium comes from the Greek sympotein, which means to drink together.
The coordinator and the moderator of the Symposium is Professor Seta B. Dadoyan, Adjunct Professor of Armenian Language and Literature at St. Nersess.
Armenian Literary and Cultural Awakening
The theme of this year's Symposium is The Armenian Awakening: 200th Anniversary of the Re-Birth of the Modern Nation - Culture, Society, Politics. The theme is inspired by the 200th anniversary of the birth of the great Armenian writer, Khachatur Abovian, the Father of East-Armenian Awakening. The occasion is also symbolic of the 200th of the re-birth of the nation and the beginning of the past two centuries of Modern Armenian history.
A Place to Discuss Issues that Concern Armenians
The Armenian Symposium was conceived by Dr. Dadoyan as an essential component of the seminarians' formation.
"The St. Nersess Armenian Symposium is a public forum and a new cultural space to discuss all issues that concern Armenians, beyond current stereotypes and clichés," Dr. Dadoyan said. In this sense it is an interactive process of understanding/learning in an open and discursive style based on question-answer-debate format. The audience is therefore as much part of the Symposium as the seminarians, the moderator and guest speakers are.
"We hope that the Symposium will not only serve the seminarians but will also initiate a fresh culture of critical thinking, and a spirit to break new grounds in the knowledge of things Armenian in their dynamic aspects," Dr. Dadoyan said.
Professor Seta Dadoyan will facilitate the
Armenian Symposium at St. Nersess Seminary
Professor Dadoyan has taught Modern Armenian Language, Literature and Culture at St. Nersess for three years. A philosopher by training, she was formerly on the faculty of the American University of Beirut. Dr. Dadoyan's interests include Armenian philosophy and Armenian cultural and intellectual history, especially in connection with Islam. She has lectured extensively in Europe, the Middle East and the United States, most recently at Columbia University, where she was Ordjanian Visiting Professor of Armenian Studies in 2002 and 2006. She is the author of six books and dozens of scholarly articles.
The Armenian Symposium is open to all interested. While conducted primarily in Armenian, accommodations will be made for interested partakers whose knowledge of the Armenian language is limited. Donations to support this and the Seminary's other educational outreach initiatives are greatly appreciated.
With the exception of September 28, the Armenian Symposium takes place on the first Monday evening of each month from 7:00 to 8:30 PM. The Fall term will focus on the East Armenian Awakening, whlie the Spring term will be dedicated to the West Armenian Awakening. The schedule and topics are as follows:
St. Nersess Armenian Symposium (Fall Term) September 28The East Armenian Cultural Awakening: An Overview The European Enlightenment. Armenians in the 17th-19th centuries under Ottoman, Persian and Tsarist rule. The Armenian Church. Nor Jugha/New Julfa. November 2Populism and LegaciesKhachatur Abovyan, Mikael Nalpantian and contemporaries. Armenian educational and cultural centers: St. Petersburg, Moscow. The Armenian Church under Tsarist control. Sayat Nova. December 7 Romantic Nationalism and the Formation of Eastern Armenian Culture Raffi, Patkanian. Society and landscape in Nar-Dos and Shirvanzade. East Armenian literature and music: Terian, Tumanian, Sundukian, Charents.For further information contact the Seminary by email or phone: (914) 636-2003.