11:17 31/08/2018 Armenia

Today marks William Saroyan's 110th birth anniversary

“Although I write in English, and despite the fact that I’m from America, I consider myself an Armenian writer. The words I use are in English, the surroundings I write about are American, but the soul, which makes me write, is Armenian. This means I am an Armenian writer and deeply love the honor of being a part of the family of Armenian wrtiters.”

August 31 marks the 110th birthday anniversary of Pulitzer Prize and Oscar-winning Armenian-American writer William Saroyan.

The writer’s anniversary will see the inauguration of his house museum in Fresno. The grand opening event will be open to the public and held on the campus of California State University of Fresno.  A documentary, musical performances of songs written by Saroyan, a recitation of his writings, and remarks by the founder and board members of the foundation will be part of the event.  Two of the songs will be a debut performance, having never been played for the public.

William Saroyan was born on August 31, 1908 in Fresno, California to Armenak and Takoohi Saroyan, Armenian immigrants from Bitlis, Ottoman Empire. His father came to New York in 1905 and started preaching in Armenian Apostolic Churches.

At the age of three, after his father’s death, Saroyan, along with his brother and sister, was placed in an orphanage in Oakland, California. Five years later, the family reunited in Fresno.

Saroyan decided to become a writer after his mother showed him some of his father’s writings. A few of his early short articles were published in Overland Monthly. His first stories appeared in the 1930s.

Among these was “The Broken Wheel”, written under the name Sirak Goryan and published in the Armenian journal Hairenik in 1933. Many of Saroyan’s stories were based on his childhood experiences among the Armenian-American fruit growers of the San Joaquin Valley or dealt with the rootlessness of the immigrant. The short story collection My Name is Aram (1940), an international bestseller, was about a young boy and the colorful characters of his immigrant family. It has been translated into many languages.

As a writer, Saroyan made his breakthrough in Story magazine with The Daring Young Man on the Flying Trapeze (1934), the title taken from the nineteenth century song of the same title. The protagonist is a young, starving writer who tries to survive in a Depression-ridden society.

He published essays and memoirs, in which he depicted the people he had met on travels in the Soviet Union and Europe, such as the playwright George Bernard Shaw, the Finnish composer Jean Sibelius, and Charlie Chaplin. In 1952, Saroyan published The Bicycle Rider in Beverly Hills, the first of several volumes of memoirs.

Saroyan died in Fresno, of cancer at age 71. Half of his ashes were buried in California and the remainder in Armenia at Komitas Pantheon near film director Sergei Parajanov.

His work remains popular to this day. His literature is taught in schools to all ages, and his plays are produced all over the world.  His Academy Award winning screenplay “The Human Comedy” has been adapted into the motion picture “Ithaca,” directed by Meg Ryan.

“The most solid advice for a writer is this, I think: Try to learn to breathe deeply, really to taste food when you eat, and when you sleep really to sleep. Try as much as possible to be wholly alive with all your might, and when you laugh, laugh like hell. And when you get angry, get good and angry. Try to be alive. You will be dead soon enough.”

“The writer who is a real writer is a rebel who never stops.”



Source Panorama.am
Share |

Related news

Տեքստում սխալ կամ վրիպակ նկատելու դեպքում, ուղարկեք խմբագրին հաղորդագրություն` նշելով տվյալ սխալը, այնուհետև սեղմելով Ctrl-Enter:

Newsfeed

20:00
Short rain predicted in Yerevan tomorrow
Rain is predicted in the daytime of October 21, at night of 22 in the most regions, in the daytime of 22, on 23-25 in separate regions, Hydromet...
19:30
Deadly blast rips Kabul polling station as Afghans vote for parliament
Multiple explosions rocked polling stations across Kabul on Saturday, causing dozens of casualties, amid growing anger among voters as they...
19:01
Pashinyan shares selfie with Lebanese Prime Minister
Acting Prime Minister of Armenia took to social media to share another selfie this time with Prime Minister of Lebanon Saad Hariri....
18:51
Cheese, yoghurt, sour scream production levels increase in Armenia
According to data provided by the National Statistics Service (NSS), 14, 280.5 tons of cheese were produced in Armenia during January-August...
18:19
Nikol Pashinyan meets with President Aoun of Lebanon
On the margins of the working visit to Lebanon, Armenian acting Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan met today with President Michel Aoun of the...
17:36
A fountain-monument with the names of Armenian capitals opened in Yerevan
The fountain-monument dedicated the 2800th anniversary of Yerevan foundation has been unveiled today in the park after Vahagn Davtyan in Arabkir...
17:04
Armenia among Georgia’s top three export destinations
Armenia is among the three top export destinations of Georgia after Azerbaijan and Russia, according to the data of first nine months of the...
16:39
Surprise for subscribers of “X” and “Y” tariff plans of VivaCell-MTS on the occasion of Yerevan’s 2800th anniversary
  On the occasion of the 2800-th anniversary of Yerevan’s foundation, VivaCell-MTS has prepared a surprise for subscribers of...
16:00
U.N. secretary-general 'deeply troubled' by Saudi journalist's death
U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is “deeply troubled” by the confirmation by Riyadh of Saudi journalist Jamal...
15:30
Christian churches in Jerusalem voice concern about cabinet discussions on legislation about church property
Three major Christian churches have voiced concern about the upcoming discussion by the Israeli ministers’ commission that is aimed at...
15:06
Russia announces the number of rebels killed in Syria since September 2015
Russia's defense minister Sergey Shoigu has stated that almost 88,000 rebels had been killed in Syria in the three years since Moscow's...
14:20
Artsakh reports over 80 Azerbaijani ceasefire violations over the past week
The Azerbaijani armed forces violated the ceasefire along the Artsakh-Azerbaijan Line of Contact over 80 times in the past week, the...
13:44
Yerevan’s 2800th anniversary celebrations: Where to go
Number of festive events are planned on Sunday, October 21, in Yerevan as part of the Armenia capital’s 2800th anniversary celebrations....
13:00
US official: Trump likely to meet with Kim early next year
President Donald Trump will likely have his second meeting with Kim Jong Un early next year to continue charting a way for the North Korean...
12:28
Three central bridges of Vilnius lit in national flag colours of Armenia
On the occasion of the 2800th anniversary of foundation of Yerevan, three central bridges of the Lithuania’s capital city Vilnius were lit...
11:36
Artsakh Republic president congratulates Catholicos of the Armenian Apostolic Church’s Holy See of Cilicia
Artsakh Republic President Bako Sahakyan sent today a congratulatory address to His Holiness Aram I, Catholicos of the Armenian Apostolic...
10:54
Mineral water production levels decrease in Armenia
22,911.3 liters of mineral water have been produced in Armenia during January-August 2018, the National Statistic Service reported. According to...
10:31
Commemoration of the King St. Theodos and Children of Ephesus
The Armenian Apostolic Church marks the commemoration of the King St. Theodos and Children of Ephesus on October 20. Qahana.am reports that the...
20:40
The Venice Commission calls proposed changes to Armenian Electoral Code ‘mostly positive’
The President of the Venice Commission Gianni Buquicchio acknowledges the specific situation in Armenia, which requires the holding of early...
20:05
Armenian servicemen awarded with Certificate of UK’s Exercise Cambrian Patrol 2018
The group of Armenian servicemen was awarded with a certificate in an annual international military patrolling event called Exercise Cambrian...
20:03
Armenian athletes win the fourth gold medal in Turkey
The Armenian team won the fourth gold medal in the Arm-Wrestling World Championships underway in Istanbul, Turkey. As the National Olympic...
19:26
#Cloud_VivaCell-MTS is to enable businesses to excel in the digital world
VivaCell-MTS has launched #Cloud_VivaCell-MTS, a completely new cloud computing service intended for large, middle and small business. The...
18:18
Nikol Pashinyan to pay working visit to Lebanon
Acting Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan will pay two-day working visit to Lebanon on October 20. As the government press service...
17:17
“Old and New Yerevan” exhibition dedicated to 2800the anniversary of Armenian capital
“Old and New Yerevan” photo exhibition dedicated to Armenian capital’s 2800th anniversary was opened today at Metronom center...
16:04
Armenian president visits German embassy on national holiday
Armenian President Armen Sarkissian, accompanied by his spouse Nune Sarkissian, visited on Friday the Embassy of Germany in Yerevan on the...
15:37
Yerevan elections marked by free journalistic activity, report says
The recent early municipal elections in the Armenian capital of Yerevan were marked by freedom of media and journalist’s work, Chairman of...
14:11
22.5% of EU population faces risk of poverty, new report shows
112.9 million people, or 22.5% of the population in the European Union (EU) were at risk of poverty or social exclusion in 2017, according to a...
13:22
Pashinyan to address nation in ‘open, detailed conversation’ at Kapan rally
Acting Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan is visiting today the southeastern town of Kapan to take part in a campaign rally and touch...
12:36
Armenian parliament speaker offers condolences over Kerch tragedy
Speaker of the Armenian National Assembly Ara Babloyan has extended condolences over the deadly Kerch college attack.  “We are...
12:04
‘He was a great storyteller with a poetic eye’ – famous American photographer about Ara Guler
World-famous American photographer Steve McCurry took to Instagram to pay tribute to legendary Turkish-Armenian photographer Ara Guler who died...

Follow us and get updates!

Most popular articles

{"core.blocks.header.spell_message1":"Selected mistake: ","core.blocks.header.spell_message2":"Send a message about the mistake?"}