Date of Award

Spring 1-1-2019

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

First Advisor

Laura Osterman

Second Advisor

Mark Leiderman

Third Advisor

Artemi Romanov

Abstract

This paper examines the ways the Armenian diaspora of Colorado preserves its ethnic and cultural identity through activities directed toward the maintenance of memory, self-consciousness, language, religion, and support of the homeland. This thesis explores those ways through the lens of interviews with three immigrant generations of Colorado Armenians. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the Armenian diaspora in Colorado is relatively small (2,916 people) in comparison with the largest Armenian diaspora in the U.S., located in California (202,432 people). Nevertheless, it has played a key role in maintenance of Armenianness through such actions as the creation of an Armenian Saturday School in Denver; Armenian Apostolic Churches in Colorado, the installation of a khachkar in honor of the Armenian Genocide; an Armenian Sardarapat Highway sign in Centennial, Colorado, that demonstrate the Armenian nation’s victory and survival, and the charity organization SOAR, (Society for Orphaned Armenian Relief), which collects money to benefit people with disabilities in Armenia.

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