A Film by Nubar & Abby Alexanian
The inspiring story of how a young woman’s curiosity propels her reluctant father to join her in finally confronting their family’s dark past and discovering how denial of the 1915 Armenian Genocide affects them and their family today.
Survivors of the Armenian Genocide and their families have been met by a century of denial. Journey to Armenia is a feature length documentary film about the scars of silence and how a staggering act of inhumanity has forever changed what it means to be Armenian.
The year 2015 will mark one hundred years since the beginning of the genocide of a million and a half Armenians by the Ottoman Turks, an event still denied by Turkey. The word “genocide” was in fact coined in 1944 by Raphael Lemkin to describe what had happened to the Armenians during World War I, and what was currently being done to the Jews during World War II. Yet many non-Armenians in the United States know little about the Armenian Genocide and even less about Armenians themselves. The Armenian Genocide is not taught in most public schools in the US or Turkey, and so the silence, denial, and lack of understanding persists through the generations. Thus, as we prepare to commemorate the only unrecognized Genocide of the 20th century, Journey to Armenia will engage viewers in a conversation that should have taken place a long time ago.
Survivors of the genocide, silenced by fear, shame, and the sheer magnitude of the trauma they endured, avoided talking to their families about what happened to them. Their children and grandchildren feel the impact of this silence without knowing where it actually comes from. Armenian Americans live in a world today where even the country that gave their families refuge from the horrors of genocide now refuses to acknowledge that this atrocity ever happened. Faced with such denial, Armenians must seek healing on their own terms. For, without recognition, how can these wounds truly be healed? This question is the driving force of Journey to Armenia.