September, 2012 marked the 90th anniversary of the Smyrna Catastrophe when much of the city, the second largest in the Ottoman Empire, was destroyed by fire four days after the Turkish army had occupied the city. The calamity, a part of the final phase of the Armenian Genocide, marked the end of a strong Christian presence in the historic Aegean coastal regions and turned hundreds of thousands of Greeks and Armenians into refugees. In this illustrated lecture, Prof. Richard Hovannisian will discuss the important role of Smyrna (Izmir) in modern Armenian history and the inferno that engulfed the city in September 1922.
Professor Richard G. Hovannisian is the first holder of the Armenian Educational Foundation Chair in Modern Armenian History at UCLA, and Professor Emeritus, Department of History, UCLA. He currently serves as Distinguished Chancellor’s Fellow at Chapman University in Orange County. He is the author of numerous books including the four-volume history The Republic of Armenia. He is the editor of Armenian Smyrna/Izmir, the eleventh volume of proceedings from the UCLA conference series “Historic Armenian Cities and Provinces.” He also traveled to Izmir and environs in June 2012 as the historian-guide for an Armenian Heritage Tour led by Armen Aroyan.
Richard G. Hovannisian, professor emeritus of history, University of California, Los Angeles