The Armenian Genocide of 1915 is one of the most horrific events in human history, and yet it is still all too often overlooked. To this day, Turkey officially denies that a genocide took place during the First World War. However, filmmaker Suzanne Khardalian has undertaken a journey into her own family’s history to uncover the truth behind her grandmother’s odd tattoos.
Khardalian’s documentary, titled Grandma’s Tattoos: A Story of Survival, follows her as she attempts to unravel the story of Armenian women who were driven out of Ottoman Turkey during the conflict. Through vivid interviews with survivors and eyewitness accounts, Khardalian reveals how many Armenians were subjected to unthinkable brutality and an unimaginable death march through the Syrian desert.
Grandma’s Tattoos: A Story of Survival not only sheds light on a neglected chapter in history but also serves as an important reminder that genocide must never happen again. The film reveals how even those who survive such horrors can be left with deep psychological scars – something Khardalian is forced to confront when she meets her grandmother for the first time since learning about her traumatic past.
This documentary is essential viewing for anyone looking to understand what happened during the Armenian Genocide and its lingering effects on its survivors and their descendants. By exploring one family’s tragedy, Khardalian brings to life a deeply personal story that resonates across generations and shines a light on an under-recognised moment in history.