The Armenian Genocide had a precise gendered logic. While the perpetrators targeted Armenian intellectuals and physically destroyed the male population, women and girls not only faced physical annihilation but also forced assimilation.
During 1915-1916, there was a widespread and systematic abduction of Armenian women and girls, who were enslaved, abused or forced into marriage with Muslim men. The relocation of women, children and the elderly to concentration camps in a remote desert in Ottoman Syria was accompanied by mass humiliations and starvation, as well as mass killings.
At AVC’s Facebook live event, Anna Aleksanyan, a Genocide scholar from Clark University, spoke about the plight of the Armenian women during the Genocide. Her groundbreaking research showed how the Armenian traditional gender roles changed under the genocidal circumstances and then served as an important source of survival for the Armenian nation. AVC Educational Director Dr. Hasmik Khalapyan facilitated the event that took place on April 28, 2019.
“I would like to say thank you for all the efforts and sharing. It is so important to me and my future work, especially since my family line was still under attack after the genocide and into 5 decades of my life. Likely there are others. So, learning about the tactics and possible ways to move forward is so important,”- Deborah Werntz, AVC student.