Read Journey to Virginland: CATENA by Armen Melikian Free Online
Book Title: Journey to Virginland: CATENA|
The author of the book: Armen Melikian
Date of issue: October 1st 2013
ISBN 13: 9781466988842
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 635 KB
Edition: Trafford Publishing - A Penguin Books Company
Read full description of the books Journey to Virginland: CATENA:￼￼￼￼￼￼Catena recounts the open-ended odyssey of a modern antihero adrift at sea.
Born into the cultural fragmentation of diaspora and a world citizen by default, the protagonist, named simply Dog, roams the globe in a Sisyphean quest for home, unable to claim allegiance to either creed or flag.
Erudite, sharp-witted, and street-smart, Dog marshals the survivor’s tenacity in his attempt to distill a legacy of victimization into a cogent, dynamic identity marked by the creative impulse, and, ultimately, a life-affirming ethos borne of the liberation from the self and the other alike.
The first epistle of the Journey to Virginland trilogy, Catena is Dog’s maiden foray into his ancestral country, where women are perennially struck by virginhood, men remain churlishly Neanderthaline, and a resplendent culture is held hostage by the twin hydras of chauvinism and corruption. It is here, in his self-referential heartland, that a disillusioned and ostracized Dog will be propelled into a consummate search for meaning.
The ensuing journey unfolds as a fluid, cinematic tapestry of emotion and experience, seemingly rudderless yet tightly interconnected, with the narrative woven together by the protagonist’s biting observations on sex, politics, history, religion, and philosophy.
Closely reflecting Dog’s splintered world, which is a consequence of empire in naked brutality marketed as progress, or as the exigencies of civilization, Catena is a conscious subversion of the form and structure of the modern novel. Melikian rejects the very nature of the conventional novel, viewing it as emblematic of the rational structures, cohesiveness, and verticality of centers of power, of the ongoing project of imperialism.
What emerges from Catena is the irreverent, often bawdy, and intensely moving tale of a stateless outsider which dispenses linearity in favor of fresh air, and a freedom of seeing which hints, with every turn, at a higher sense of humanism.
Read information about the authorArmen Melikian (b. 1963) holds a Master's in International Relations from American University, Washington, D.C. He has also studied mathematics at Harvard and elsewhere, and was admitted by the Mathematical Institute of Oxford University. However, he eventually abandoned both politics and mathematics in favor of literature and dedicated his life to writing.
In 2002, Melikian repatriated to Armenia from the United States and for two years studied the Armenian epic tradition. He also compiled his observations on post-Soviet Armenian society which provided the raw material for his epistolary novel, Journey to Virginland. His manuscripts were obtained by the National Security Service (formerly the KGB) triggering his effective exile from Armenia. His wife was interrogated at the headquarters of the NSS and was threatened with prosecution for "treason against Armenia" should she fail to cooperate--and threatened with assassination by a member of the interrogating team should she continue her newspaper column where she had recently introduced Melikian's literary work. The NSS also invaded the premises of the National Public Radio of Armenia with the intention to arrest a prominent journalist minutes before a program by him was to air on Melikian's work.
After a decade of unabated persecution and national ostracism accompanied with several hundred assassination threats (including by high-ranking government officials) incited largely by the Armenian Church and condoned through a conspiracy of silence by Armenian political and cultural institutions worldwide, as well as so-called "human rights" and literary organizations, Melikian renounced all ties to the Armenian nation, culture, literature, language, and identity. He currently lives in Los Angeles.
Melikian is one of those rare thinkers whose intensity of passion matches their sharp wit and intellect. His poignant observations take to task the core tenets of meta-ideologies and jockeying civilizations, helping to discard layer after layer of entrenched misinformation and dogma.
Melikian brings a fresh, prodigiously layered voice to contemporary literature, not only expanding the boundaries of the novelistic endeavor as an artistic medium per se, but infusing it with extraordinary urgency and relevance in terms of sociopolitical, cultural, religious, and philosophical thought as well as mythological exegesis.
Given its prescient vision of the shape of things to come, Melikian’s novel has been compared by critics to some of the masterpieces of contemporary literature, among them the politically explosive works of George Orwell. It has also been compared to Gurdjieff's Beelzebub's Tales to His Grandson, and even to the book of Revelation.
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