TCLITD: Part 2 of Part 1 (Chapter 2 – 6)

Some fun things I highlighted and/or wrote in the margins:

CHAPTER 2

  • people called the same place different things (Armenia was called several different things)
  • “Armenians are one of the fortunate few ethnic or religious groups … that have a long literary pedigree, a collection of texts that tell their story from the dawn of history through the middle ages” (32).
  • “Armenians were an identifiable people with their own Iranian-style tribal structure and borrowed paganism. An almost exclusively rural society with minimal state organization, they were ruled by a warrior class, an elite of pagan priests, and a rough kind of kingship. Insofar as there was political organization, it was highly decentralized with great autonomy for the emerging nobles” (33). I wrote “that’s cool” next to this because I thought it was cool (obviously) that they were ruled by a warrior class and priests and a kingship rather than state organization. I’m not against state organization per say but I think that societies organized in a different way are interesting.
  • “For the next five centuries Armenians were divided between those still living in the lands lost to their imperial overlords and those dispersed into other lands, forming colonies and maintaining the traditions of their religion and culture” (37). I just liked this because a people was divided and made new cultures but still preserved the one that united them. A little culture tree. Cute.
  • “From the late fourteenth century to the twentieth the major spiritual and political institution for Armenians was the church” (38). I have lots of liberal opinions about this (separation of church and state to the max) but damn, that’s a solid 6 hundred years in which Armenians relied on the church for spiritual and political beliefs or whatever. Maybe I’m interpreting that wrong but who’s actually going to read this? Mom? Mr. Rigler? Are you there?
  • “The sultan and the Armenian patriarch collaborated in repressing Armenian Catholics” (40). I guess here I’m just mad that people collaborated in repression. That’s all.
  • “The Catholic fathers reached out by opening schools, presenting plays, and providing a model of energy and dedication that inspired succeeding generations of patriots, even as their younger acolytes rejected the original religious (in this case Catholic) impulse of their forefathers.” I like this a lot. It’s cute.

Okay, I’m probably going to add to this later on when I have time to kill (will this ever happen? I can pray)