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The Soviet regime and decline of the Church and religion

The Soviet regime and decline of the Church and religion

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Location: Bellarmine Room, Heythrop College

Centre for Eastern Christianity Michaelmas Term Lecture Series

The Armenian Church, Society and Politics - The costs and challenges of the Soviet legacy in Armenia and the Diaspora

This lecture will discuss the establishment of Soviet rule in Armenia and the near extinction of the institutional church, especially in the 1920’s, 30’s and 40's. The Church suffered heavily under decades of Soviet rule, anti-religious propaganda and was stripped bare to its liturgical functions. This process furthered the "secularisation" of the church that had started in the 19th century. Particular focus will be on the relationship between the Armenian Church and the Soviet-State in the context of the 'Repatriation' of Armenians from the Diaspora to Soviet Armenia in the mid-1940s.

Speaker: Dr Hratch Tchilingirian, Oriental Institute, University of Oxford

There is no need to book for this lecture, please just come along.


Hratch Tchilingirian is a faculty member of the Faculty of Oriental Studies, University of Oxford. From 2002 to March 2012 he taught and held various positions at the Judge Business School, University of Cambridge, and was co-founder of the Eurasia Research Centre in Cambridge.  Dr Tchilingirian has published extensively and lectures on minorities in contemporary Middle East; the Armenian Church; Diaspora; Turkish-Armenian relations; and the Caucasus. His research interests include sociology of religion, identity politics, diaspora studies, and transnationalism.

Contact Name: John Flannery
Contact Email: j.flannery@heythrop.ac.uk