Anna Ohanjanyan (Mashtots Institute of Ancient Manuscripts “Matenadaran”, Yerevan, Armenia, Pontica Magna program fellow at the NEC) will present a public lecture:

Debating Confessions: Armenian Polemical Literature in the Early Eighteenth Century

The early eighteenth century marked for the Armenians the apogee of the confessional age. In the two-fold geopolitical settings under the rule of rival Muslim (Ottoman and Safavid) Empires the Armenian ecclesiastic authors embarked on composition of confessional literature to delineate the boundaries of the Armenian ‘orthodoxy’ in the face of rising Global Catholicism. Polemical writings in manuscript and printed forms were produced by the Armenian Apostolic as well as Catholic factions in Constantinople, Amsterdam, Vienna, New Julfa in an attempt to debate on ‘true faith’ and ‘true practice’ from the point of view of their respective Churches. New communal modes of engagement with theological tradition set forth novel or rethought genres and vocabulary to meet the questions arising from the altered confessional context. While the clichés specific to polemical genre occupied significant place, the majority of the authors customized the language, vocabulary and style of their writings in an efforts to reach the target audience. The lecture will focus on the socio-political context in which Armenian polemical literature proliferated laying stresses on the synergy of inherited literary canon with the ‘novelty’ Early Modern era brought into the confessional literature of the Armenian Church.

10. July 2019, 9:00 – 10:00 AM, New Conference Hall, Sofia University “St. Clement Ohridsky”


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