Shahan Shahnour

Biography & Works

Compiled By Shant Norashkharian

Shahan Shahnour was born Shahnour Kerestejian, on August 3, 1903, in a suburb of Istanbul, Turkey. He graduated from Berberian High School in 1921, and started contributing to "Vosdan" paper, mostly with translations. In 1923 he moved to Paris, where he worked as a photographer, and in 1929 he published his first novel written in Armenian, RETREAT WITHOUT SONG, which had appeared periodically in Harach newspaper of Paris. In 1933, he published his second book, also written in Armenian, THE BETRAYAL OF BLOOD-SUCKERS, which is a collection of short stories. In 1937 he fell victim to a terrible bone disease (Osteolysis) which disabled him and caused him much pain and suffering for the rest of his life, which was spent in hospitals after he lost his home in 1939. In 1945, having partially recovered from his illness, he started writing in French under the name Armen Lubin, and from then on he was acclaimed highly as a French writer and poet and received several literary awards. He published in French THE FURTIVE PASSER-BY, SACRED PATIENCE, THE NIGHTLY TRANSPORT, THE HIGH CAGE, and FIRE WITH FIRE. In 1962 a collection of his Armenian works were printed in Yerevan by Haybedhrad Press. In 1967 he published TWO RED NOTEBOOKS in Armenian, and in 1971 THE OPEN REGISTER also in Armenian. Shahnour died on August 20, 1974, in the hospital of Saint Rafael, in France.

A Short Bibliography

Writings by Shahan Shahnour:

Lubin, Armen. Feux contre feux [Fire against Fire] (Paris: B. Grasset, 1968).
________. L'etranger [The Foreigner] (Troyes: Cahiers Bleus, 1984).
________. Le passager clandestin [The Furtive Passer-by] (Paris: Gallimard, 1946).
________. Les hautes terrasses; poemes [The High Cage: Poems] (Paris: Gallimard, 1957).
________. Les logis provisoires (Mortemart: Rougerie, 1983).
________. Sainte patience; poemes [Sacred Patience: Poems] (Paris: Gallimard, 1951).
________. Transfert nocturne [The Nightly Transfer] (Paris: Gallimard, 1955).

Shahnour, Shahan. Azatn Komitas (1970).
________. Bats tomare (1971).
________. Erker [Works], ed. Abraham Alikiane (Erevan: "Sovetakan Grogh" Hratarakchutyun, 1982-).
________. Haraleznerun davachanutiune (Paris: Tpagrutiun Ter-Hakobean, 1933).
________. Haraleznerun davachanutiune: patkerazard patmutiun Hayots (Paris: Matenashar "Haraj," 1971).
________. Nahanje arhants ergi [Retreat without Song] (1959).
________. Nahanje arhants ergi: patkerazard patmutiun Hayots [Retreat without Song: Armenian History Illustrated] (Paris: Tparan Masis, 1929).
________. Nahanje arhants ergi: patkerazard patmutiun Hayots [Retreat without Song: Armenian History Illustrated] (Beirut: Hratarakutiun Sevan Hratarkchakan Tan, 1981).
________. Retreat without Song, trans. Mischa Kudian (London: Mashtots Press, 1982).
________. Taterakan patkerner (Beirut: Shirak, 1986).
________. Tertis kiraknoreay tiue (Beirut: Hratarakutiun Grigor Keoseeani, 1958).
________. The Tailor's Visitors, trans. Mischa Kudian (London: Mashtots Press, 1984).

Writings about him:

Brenner, Jacques. Mon Histoire de la Litterature Franciase Contemporaine [My History of Contemporary French Literature] (Paris, 1988).

Topchian, Edward. The Concept of Renaissance. (Erevan: Sovetakan Grogh, 1977).