“Issues and Perspectives of Western Armenian”-a discussion that was necessary

The discussion on “Issues and Perspectives of Western Armenian Language” stood out among the events dedicated to Mother Language Day. The discussion was organized by the RA Ministry of Diaspora, the National Academy of Sciences of Armenia and H. Atcharyan Language Institute and included speeches by notable linguists and philologists, including academician-secretary of the NAS RA Yuri Suvaryan; correspondent members of the NAS RA Aelita Dolukhanyan and Ashot Melkonyan; Professors of Yerevan State University Vazgen Gabrielyan and Samvel Muradyan; Professor of the Armenian State Pedagogical University after Kh. Abovyan Lalik Khachatryan; Director of the Matenadaran, Doctor of Philological Sciences Hrachya Tamrazyan; Director of the NAS RA Institute of Literature, Doctor of Philological Sciences, Professor Avik Isahakyan; Doctor of Philological Sciences, Professor Lilit Arzumanyan; Head of the State Language Inspectorate, Doctor of Philological Sciences, Professor Sergo Yeritsyan and others.

RA Minister of Diaspora, Doctor of Law, Professor Hranush Hakobyan greeted the gathered and addressed the issues of Western Armenian language in the full auditorium of the NAS RA. Hakobyan attached importance to the great significance of the Western Armenian language in the formation of the new literary language and its contribution to the solution to issues on Western Armenian language instruction and the creation of rich literature. These days, Western Armenian is at risk. There are several problems and concerns, and any discussion that will help Armenians deeply appreciate Western Armenian, link it to Eastern Armenian and work on ways of coming to terms in both languages is necessary. Minister Hranush Hakobyan is always in contact with the large number of Armenians living abroad and is aware of their concerns. Thereby, this discussion can serve as a new bridge between Eastern Armenian and Western Armenian and as a new milestone for a comprehensive analysis of the major issues of Western Armenian.

Before the speeches, the participants of the discussion watched a series of videos made by director of Formica Company Shahen Nazarenko devoted to Mother Language Day. Like many other countries, Armenia has also declared a Mother Language Day. This means that there is a holiday for our wonderful language, the language that has gone through trials and tribulations and the language that Vahan Teryan called ‘flexible and barbaric’. This is respectable, especially since the day follows Book Donation Day. So, in either way, it is also linked to the Great Tumanyan. Perhaps there is no other nation that has two languages in literature and two classic styles of usage, but the Armenians do. This is our wealth and also says a lot about our destiny. The ceremonies dedicated to Mother Language Day are already an inseparable part of our reality, and Shahen Nazarenko has recorded the wonderful moments that have gone down in history and will continue.

The showing was followed by speeches in which all the speakers emphasized Western Armenian language. Among the speakers were V. Katvalyan (“Key Issues and Perspectives of Western Armenian”). Y. Avetisyan (“Issues and Perspectives of Western Armenian”), V. Hambardzumyan (“On the Issues of Establishing Norms for Literary Western Armenian”) and N. Martirosyan (“Issues on the Study of Western Armenian Media”). Among the more interesting speeches were the speeches by RA Deputy Minister of Diaspora, candidate of philological sciences Serzh Srapionyan (“On the Ways of Preserving the Western Armenian Language”); Doctor of Philological Sciences, Professor Suren Danielyan (“Roads for the Development of Western Armenian in Armenia’s System of Education”); Doctor of Philological Sciences, Professor Lalik Khachatryan (“On Linguistic Issues of Syrian-Armenians”) and Doctor of Philological Sciences, Professor Ruben Sakapetoyan (“Some Issues on the Relationship between Eastern Armenian and Western Armenian”). What’s interesting is that there were scientific explanations and justifications for the issues related to the constant clashes between Western Armenian and Eastern Armenian in the Armenian Diaspora.

The discussion ended with a presentation of Hrachuhi Palanduzyan’s book List of Functional Words: Armenian Equivalents of Foreign Words.


The discussion also helped raise the issue of preserving the mother language in general.


Levon Mutafyan



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