(Text Source: Nineveh Press - Tomas Beth-Avdalla, Editor & Pubilsher)
Naum Faiq Palak, a native of Omid, was the founder of the civil organization Cirutho (Eng. Awakening) in the city of Omid. This organization quickly grew in membership, and local branches began popping up in cities like Kharput, Mardin, Midyat, and Mosul, as well as in the cities of the Assyrian diaspora in the United States, namely, New Jersey and New York. The popularity of Cirutho transcended the primary lingual, confessional, and geographical divide that Assyrians found themselves in, that is, it was well received by both Western and Eastern Assyrians.
Through his active role in Cirutho and through his publications Kawkab Madenho (1910–1912, Omid), Bethnahrin (1916–1920, 1922–1930), Cirutho (1909–1915, New York), for which he was a prolific contributor, and Huyodo (1920–1921, New York), for which he was editor in chief, he called for a national awakening and unity, regardless of one’s church affiliation. Through these publications Palak expressed the importance of education, printing houses, and the continued use of Syriac as the native language for Assyrians of his time. With the writings and poetry collected together in this book, Naum Faiq Palak’s call for these noble ideals may once again be heard by Assyrians of today.
Shortly after his death in the United States on February 5th, 1930, many of his poems and songs were changed and falsified; Othuroyo was changed to Suryoyo. As the reader will notice, the division that we see today with different appellations like Othuroyo, Suryoyo, Oromoyo, and Kaldoyo is a non-issue for Palak; in fact, he uses all of the above terms without any real distinction. In English, he advocated the term Assyrian.
This volume is unique as it presents nearly all of Naum Faiq Palak’s articles, letters, and poems, as published in the magazines noted above, and from other sources such as handwritten documents, books, and other periodicals. I began to collect this source material over 20 years ago, as I sought more information about who he really was, what his literary heritage looks like, and what his role was in the birth of the Assyrian national movement. I collected most of the material in this book when I was Project Manager for the Modern Assyrian Research Archive (MARA), a mission which took me to several archives, libraries, private collections, organizations, monasteries, and churches in the United States, the Middle East, and Europe.
I welcome you to take part in my journey to explore the persona of Naum Faiq Palak, and my subsequent efforts to put together this collection, the sweet fruits of many years of hard but fun and interesting labor.
True to Naum’s call, all of the contents of this book are in Syriac.
All proceeds support the Assyrian Studies Association's mission.
Publisher: Nineveh Press
Edited by: Tomas Beth-Avdalla
Series: MARA Collected Texts
Publication Date: 21 June 2021
Publication status: Published
Interior Color: Color
Trim Size: 6 x 9 in (229 x 152 mm)
Page Count: 480 + 40 pages illustrations
Naum Faiq Palak – A Pioneer Journalist, Writer, Poet & Leader of a National Awak
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