Prof. Taner Akçam publishes new book on Sayfo: “The Genocide of Christian Populations in the Ottoman Empire and Its Aftermath (1908-1923)

LONDON — A long-awaited book on the Christian genocide of Armenians, Syriacs, and Greeks in the latter days of the Ottoman Empire was released today by publisher Routledge. Co-editors Taner Akçam, Prof. of history and genocide scholar at UCLA, Theodosios Kyriakidis, researcher for Pontic studies in Thessaloniki, and Kyriakos Chatzikyriakidis, associate professor of Pontic studies in Thessaloniki, bring together scholars from different fields and countries each writing about the long genocide of the Christian peoples between 1908-1923. Taner Akçam wrote the introduction under the title “The Anatomy of Ottoman Genocide.”

The book bears the title of an international conference held in Greece and contains a selection of articles presented at the conference. The book contains previously unpublished archive material and an innovative historiographical approach to analyze events and their inheritance in comparative perspective. To understand the historical context of the Ottoman genocide, “it is important, apart from the Armenian case, to study the fate of the Greek and Assyrian peoples, offering a better understanding of the complexity of the situation.”

The Routledge book description further states; “During the twilight years of the Ottoman Empire, the ethnic tensions between the minority populations within the empire led to the administration carrying out a systematic destruction of the Armenian people. This not only brought 2,000 years of Armenian civilization within Anatolia to an end but was accompanied by the mass murder of Syriac and Greek Orthodox Christians.”

The chapters specific on the Syriac (Aramean-Assyrian-Chaldean) genocide, “Late Recognition of the Assyrian Genocide” and “Big Secrets, Small Villages. The Collective Memory of the Assyrian Genocide” are written by respectively Prof. of history David Gaunt (Södertörn University in Stockholm) and Mary Akdemir (currently working as Staff Editor at The New York Times).

According to the table of contents of the book, there is no chapter about the Kafno famine genocide in Lebanon.