on the silk road

Hundreds Gather in Glendale for Armenians and Progressive Politics

Historic Conference Brings Community Together to Discuss Social Issues and Progressive Solutions

photo by Nora YacoubianGLENDALE–Amid a period of declining social consciousness, Glendale became host to a historic forum over the weekend, as renowned intellectuals and activists from around the world joined over 200 hundred socially conscious activists for a two-day symposium exploring modern issues of social justice and progressive politics.

The event was the first of its kind on the West Coast and the 5th in a series organized by the Armenian Revolutionary Federation. One of California’s progressive radio stations, KPFK 90.7 FM (Radio Pacifica) and the Armenian Cultural Foundation cosponsored the event, which brought together renowned progressive artists, intellectuals and activists from South America, the United States, and Armenia for a critical examination of modern social issues afflicting Armenians and the wider global community. The symposium also featured a number of the personalities heard on Pacifica Radio.

photo by Nora Yacoubian

“The purpose of the conference is to raise social consciousness,” said organizing committee member Razmig Shirinian during his opening remarks Friday night. “Our organization [The ARF] was founded 118 years ago upon revolutionary, nationalist, socialist, and democratic ideals…and we must remind ourselves and the people that social and critical thinking is necessary–that we should never give up our ideals…and our fight for basic rights and social justice.

The topics discussed were not the type that would soon be covered by CNN or Fox News. The issues discussed traced the gamut from the war in Iraq and art’s role in raising social consciousness to women’s rights, socio-economic conditions in Armenia, the local labor movement and corporate influence in the media, all the while presenting them in both an Armenian and global perspective

Full Article and Photos:

photo by Nora Yacoubian


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