Mass Destruction of Armenian Cultural Heritage during the Hamidian Massacres (1894-1896)
Keywords:vandalism, cultural genocide, genocide, Hamidian massacres, Armenian Genocide, cultural heritage, mass destruction, state policy
The policy of destruction of the Armenian cultural heritage in the Ottoman Empire began with the conquest of Western Armenia and has continued until the present day. Over the centuries, Armenian culture, as part of the Empire’s Christian culture, has either been destroyed spontaneously, in vast swathes or undergone various manifestations of neutralisationby various Turkish regimes. The first part of this article will outline the approaches made by Genocide study theorists concerning the origin and definition of the term “cultural genocide” existing until today, including the attempts at revising or even re-naming it. The second part outlines the chronology of Armenian cultural heritage destruction. A detailed description of the policy of demolition of the Armenian cultural heritage during Hamidian massacres as a manifestation of vandalism or cultural genocide will also be presented.
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