A Shameful Act: The Armenian Genocide and the Question of Turkish Responsibility

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Macmillan, Aug 21, 2007 - History - 483 pages
4 Reviews

"The definitive account of the organized destruction of the Ottoman Armenians . . . No future discussion of the history will be able to ignore this brilliant book."—Orhan Pamuk

Beginning in 1915, under the cover of a world war, some one million Armenians were killed through starvation, forced marches, and mass acts of slaughter. Although Armenians and the judgment of history have long held the Ottoman powers responsible for genocide, modern Turkey has rejected any such claim.

Now, in a pioneering work of excavation, Turkish historian Taner Akçam has made unprecedented use of Ottoman and other sources—military and court records, parliamentary minutes, letters, and eyewitness reports—to produce a scrupulous account of Ottoman culpability. Tracing the causes of the mass destruction, Akçam reconstructs its planning and implementation by the departments of state, the military, and the ruling political parties, and he probes the multiple failures to bring the perpetrators to justice.

As the topic of the Armenian genocide provokes ever-greater passion and controversy around the world, Akçam's work has only become more important and relevant. Beyond its timeliness, however, A Shameful Act is sure to take its lasting place as a classic and necessary work on the subject.

 

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A SHAMEFUL ACT: The Armenian Genocide and the Question of Turkish Responsibility

User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

Turkish historian Akçam capably refutes those who deny the Armenian genocide, who will probably not change their minds.No one knows how many Armenians died at Turkish hands in the 1910s, but the ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - jcovington - LibraryThing

This is a very important book. The violent massacre of the Armenians was a tragedy on par with the Holocaust, yet the perpetrators not only escaped real justice, but a century later still get to deny ... Read full review

Contents

Authors Note
15
THE DECISION FOR GENOCIDE
109
THE INVESTIGATIONS AND PROSECUTION
205
The Turkish National Movements Position
303
The Final Phase of the Trials
349
Why the Postwar Trials Failed
368
Notes
377
Acknowledgments
465
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About the author (2007)

Born in Ardahan province, Turkey, in 1953, Taner Akcam is the author of ten scholarly works of history and sociology, including A Shameful Act, as well as numerous articles in Turkish, German, and English. He currently teaches at Clark University.

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