By Adom Sabanchian The Armenian community in Iran has a long and rich history. There are the indigenous Armenians who inhabited the territory that is Iran for millennia. And there are those who migrated to Iran and settled there in different periods. A first wave arrived in the early 17th century, under Shah Abbas. There were more recent waves in the 20th century. As a result, there are cultural, educational and class differences between the Armenians of Iran. Despite this, the community enjoys a degree of homogeneity. Civil-society organizations emerged among Armenians -- including Armenian women -- much earlier than in the mainstream Muslim population: from the mid-19th century onwards. This was especially true among Armenians living in the northern region of Azerbaijan and its capital Tabriz. Because of the geographical proximity to the Russian Empire, the Armenians of Iran became influenced by the Armenians living
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  1. This is very interesting and important work. Many of us non-Armenian Iranians grew up knowing many amazing Armenian-Iranian women and heard about them from our parents and loved, admired and respected them. My mother’s best friend in her 20s (she passed away last year at the age of 83) was her Armenian colleague for example and she remembered her lovingly till the end of her life. Or one of my father’s cousins – Mostafa Bozorgnia who was killed by the Iranian regime in what has come to be known as Rooz Daneshjoo had an Armenian fiance and so many other such examples in my own life with Armenian classmates at Shiraz U, in my work with the UN in Iran, friends etc. I would love to read such a book.

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