RA Minister of Diaspora awards Khoren Aramouni

On June 24, RA Minister of Diaspora Hranush Hakobyan granted the William Saroyan Medal to Armenian American writer Khoren Aramouni.

Prose writer Khoren Aramouni Keshishian was born in 1948 in Iran. After graduating from the middle school in Tehran, Aramouni left for Isfahan and got accepted to the Armenian Studies Department of the local university. Two years later, in 1969, he and his family repatriated to Armenia. In 1975, he graduated from the Department of Philology at Yerevan State University. In 1980, he immigrated to the United States. After a short break, he published articles in the local presses.

Khoren Aramouni’s short stories, short novels, collections of plays, the novel Theater and the memoir The Road to School have been published in Yerevan and Los Angeles between the years of 1991 and 2005.

Since 1996, Aramouni’s plays have been performed in Yerevan and Los Angeles.

Praising Khoren Aramouni’s career from the perspective of presenting the Armenian reality abroad through artistic expressions, the minister particularly mentioned: “Each of your books is a response to the major issues of the times, and your latest book about our compatriots being reborn and aware of their identity is truly an addition to Armenian literature in terms of the topic and its structure.” Welcoming the writer’s step to reflect on incognito Armenians, Hakobyan expressed the desire to see a film or play based on the book. In her speech, the minister also stated: “With this book, you are also moving toward the genre of the biographical novel since this book is based on your life story and the stories of several compatriots. You are the bearer of the destiny of a genuine Armenian. You were born in Iran, lived in Armenia and left for America during the Soviet era, but you returned to the Homeland during the years of independence.”

Khoren Aramouni expressed gratitude for the award and mentioned: “Iran “gave me” life, Armenia “gave” me the spirit and America “gave” me welfare. I’m thankful for being lucky to obtain in the Independent Armenian what I had been dreaming of since childhood. I thank the Ministry of Diaspora for honoring me and granting me this award,” Aramouni said.

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