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On September 4, in Berlin, Civilitas will launch a new program trying to bring public attention to the personal aspect of Armenian-Turkish relations. CLIMBING THE MOUNTAIN is a series of travelling programs with a pair of celebrities, Armenian and Turk, talking about their “personal journeys” dealing with historic and political tensions surrounding the Genocide, and their own views on the way forward. These programs will be held in various public spaces (schools, universities, radio stations, theaters, museums) in Turkey and Armenia as well as in various European capitals. The overall objective is to institute systematic, sustained steps to transform the existing environment of misinformation and misunderstanding about the past and present.

The first pair of celebrities are Arsinee Khanjian and Fethiye Cetin.

Fethiye Çetin is an attorney, human rights activist, and writer. She had been involved in the Hrant Dink defense prior to his assassination. She continues to represent the family. She is also the author of MY GRANDMOTHER, about her discovery of her dying grandmother’s Armenian roots. She is the co-author of THE GRANDCHILDREN, a book of first-person retellings of other grandchildren’s coming to terms with their grandparents’ Armenian ancestry.

Arsinee Khanjian is an actress, born in Lebanon, and a citizen of Canada. She is a stage and screen actress who tackles the unspoken legacy of Genocide through her own and her husband Atom Egoyan’s works.

The first series of programs will take place first in Berlin on September 4, at the Naumann Foundation. The second will take place in Istanbul, at. The third will take place in Yerevan on September 13. The programs will be livestreamed and also videotaped and shared on a dedicated trilingual website in order to widen the audience and promote reciprocal understanding, especially in the run-up to the 100th anniversary of the Genocide.

The moderated forum will offer an opportunity for those around the world to join the complex, personal discussions on a still dark, still hidden history.

Civilitas has partnered with Anadolu Kultur and has received support from the Black Sea Trust of the German Marshall Fund of the United States.

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Civil.am - your guide to civil society activity in Armenia - is a project of the Civilitas Foundation. Take a closer look to better understand what is already being done. Identify potential partners and cooperation possibilities. Support existing programs to increase efficiency. Encourage new programs to foster development.
Facts for Thought
Number of theater performances (1) and attendance (2) in Armenia
(1) (2)
2008 2,364 409,500
2009 2,443 367,800
2010 2,331 394,800
2011 2,707 458,900
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