Alice Ketabgian to Present Life in Istanbul: A Family’s Odyssey at Museum

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MISSION HILLS, Calif.— will present her recent book, Life in Istanbul: A Family’s Odyssey, depicting her life’s experiences while growing up in Istanbul as the child of survivors of the Armenian Genocide on Sunday, January 8, at 4 p.m., at the Ararat-Eskijian Museum, Sheen Chapel, 15105 Mission Hills Road.

The program is sponsored by the Ararat-Eskijian Museum, the Organization of Istanbul Armenians, and the National Association for Armenian Studies and Research (NAASR).

Ketabgian describes the later stages of the Genocide perpetrated by the Turkish government against its minorities, while living in constant fear for their lives as Christians in a Muslim world. The book is partly a story of resilience while attempting to find a way of getting out of a suffocating environment, as well as a story of the past events of survival that her ancestors experienced. Eventual relocation to the United States to continue her education comes with its own unique encounters, both in school and life itself, which adds to the immigrant’s narrative.

Ketabgian received an M.S. in Human Physiology from the UCLA School of Medicine in 1968 and later became a registered dietitian. After working as a clinical dietitian in her husband Dr. Gregory Ketabgian’s internal medicine office for a number of years, she became the office manager and functioned in that capacity for the following 25 years until their retirement in 2004.

She will be introduced by her daughter, Dr. Tamara Ketabgian, professor of English literature at Beloit College, who will also give a short talk on challenges of writing memoirs.

Ketabgian is a graduate of Harvard College and received a PhD from Princeton University. At Beloit College, she teaches classes both in her specialty and in a variety of interdisciplinary topics, including modern urban culture, life writing, and autobiography.

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Topics: Book Reviews
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