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International Armenian Literary Alliance (IALA)

Olivia Katrandjian, Founder & President; Hovsep Markarian, Executive Director


About us

The International Armenian Literary Alliance is a network of Armenian writers and their champions. Collectively, we give Armenian writers a voice in the literary world through creative, professional, and scholarly advocacy. Armenians have a long history of traversing cultures and identities through immigration, exile, displacement and/or relocation, and the medium of writing is important for us to attach words to experiences that defy categories and reach across continents. IALA thus fosters readership within the Armenian community to empower diverse identities. Cultivating interest in Armenian literature beyond our community, IALA promotes solidarity and empathy toward our culture. With support from IALA’s network, literature about the Armenian experience will contribute more widely to global conversations on immigration; racial, ethnic and cultural identities; social and economic class; and gender and sexuality. Our forum includes writers from all geographic and linguistic backgrounds. While the majority of IALA’s members are of Armenian descent, our community encompasses people from all over the world who speak many languages. We focus on literature in the English language because of its global reach, but our aim is to operate beyond any linguistic barriers. Literature is a vital element of a people’s identity, ensuring our culture thrives in its multiplicity of voices, our people and heritage are celebrated and understood, and our place in history is illuminated. As Peter Balakian wrote, “investing in the arts is investing in the core continuity of Armenian civilization.” A people is defined by its stories, and by facilitating a resurgence of Armenian literature—literature written by, for, or about Armenians—we are proactively defining our legacy.

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