Artyom Tonoyan. Hovhannes Nikoghosyan

PSIA Hosts a Book Talk on Nagorno Karabakh Conflict

2 min read

YEREVAN, Armenia — On February 8, 2022, the American University of Armenia (AUA) Political Science and International Affairs (PSIA) program held a book talk with independent scholar Dr. Artyom Tonoyan on his latest book “Black Garden Aflame” published in 2021 by East View Press. PSIA adjunct lecturer Dr. Hovhannes Nikoghosyan was the discussant and facilitator of the event. 

PSIA Program Chair Associate Professor Dr. Vahram Ter-Matevosyan made the welcoming remarks, after which Dr. Tonoyan took the floor to present his book. “Black Garden Aflame” is a collection of several hundred articles on the Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict published in the Soviet and Russian press. The book is a collection of articles carefully translated, edited, and culled from a vast repository of Russian-language press curated by East View. Some of the most important materials published since 1988 are compiled into a book in English for the first time.

By pulling together this unique collection, Dr. Tonoyan says, he aims to provide readers — students, scholars, and decision-makers alike — with the immediate context of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict through the lens of Moscow, along with some insight into its complex historical, political, and ethnic underpinnings. 

After the presentation, Dr. Nikoghosyan initiated the discussion succinctly commenting on the main arguments in the book. His main questions to the author concerned both historical aspects of the narratives included in the book, as well as the lessons that can be extracted for the present period. During the discussion, Dr. Tonoyan elucidated on these points, presented who the book is aimed at, cited a few pieces that were the most shocking or impressive in his opinion, etc. There was an exchange of views pertaining to the evolution of Russia’s position on Nagorno Karabakh conflict since the late 1980s as evidenced in the media publications included in the book, and, more importantly, the relevance, if any, that the historical narration of the conflict bears to the present, given the ambitious statements about “opening a new era of peace” in the region of South Caucasus. The book, in their opinion, provides numerous answers as to whether such scenarios are conceivable under the present circumstances.  

The presentation was followed by a Q&A session, during which the audience had the opportunity to expand on the topic and seek further elaborations on some key arguments made in the book.

The Political Science and International Affairs (PSIA) program of the American University of Armenia (AUA) equips students with advanced analytical reasoning, critical thinking, and communication skills through the study of political science and international affairs, emphasizing local and global perspectives and practical applications of theory. The program provides world-class teaching and research, producing graduates who can best contribute to the development of the nation.