Akop Gabrielyan
Political scientist, PhD

The book both raises many issues, and makes one ask a lot of questions about the fate of the Armenian nation. The work should be interesting to the representatives of other nations as well, since the topics discussed in it equally apply to all the civilizations that are, recalling the wonderful work of A. Toynbee, “on trial” of history today. 

It seems to me that the approach and message of the book are extremely important for all Armenians, who are used to passively remembering the great past and terrible tragedies, instinctively often rallying around them, but not generating state-level innovative ideas to create a national welfare. At the same time, it is necessary to state that the Armenian culture is not expansive in itself, it is turned “inward”, to self-preservation, which allowed Armenians to maintain their identity for centuries, but no more than that – not to develop their cultural code for spreading externally. Thus, if the Republic of Armenia and the Armenian nation as an original culture want to survive in the age of the greatest challenges, when threats of physical annihilation exist simultaneously with the threats of absolute social and ethnic assimilation, it is necessary to develop the habit of looking not only at the past, but also get used to generating the future. Here and now. Right now.  

That is why the book has every chance of becoming not just a “reading material”, but an incentive to act. Presently, there are many pessimistic forecasts regarding where Armenia is heading. Is it even moving anywhere? Or is the nation doomed to fade away? If moving, is it inert, along a predetermined path or based on the independent and rational choice of the people? The identity of the Armenian diaspora with each new generation less and less connects Armenians with caring for their historical home, which fits into the logic of the objectively existing socio-economic and cultural processes of the glocalization. In a few generations, this connection will probably be lost forever, while the diaspora in today’s paradigm plays a key role for the Republic of Armenia itself (imagine if at least some of the prominent figures of the different Armenian diaspora cultures existed in the past and present, who have made a huge intellectual contribution to the development of their country of residence, generated and implemented their ideas in favor of the Republic!). How to respond to this trend?  

Another major issue is to understand the role and place of the church as an institution of faith in the life of the modern Armenian man. It seems that in today’s reality, the church no longer has a mandate to preserve the Armenian identity, to realize the enlightening mission that it possessed during the previous eighteen centuries. How to make the Armenian Church not a formal-declarative, but an active institution of the spiritual consolidation of the Armenians around the world in the 21st century?  

The modern Armenia and Armenians do not have the luxury of time that existed before, which is primarily in the view of the acceleration of the historical process itself associated with socio-technical and technological innovations. How can we not become history ourselves, but make one? How to not only theorize about the state and civil society of a fundamentally new type, but also create them? This field of the most important questions remains open, and “At the Crossroads” invites everyone to its constructively meaningful filling.


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