Interviews | April 7, 2021
Read more about `Sharing the Burden: An Interview with Charlie Laderman`
Drawing on research in U.S., British, and Armenian archives, Sharing the Burden looks at the evolution of the relationship between the United States and Great Britain from roughly 1894 until 1919. What was known as “The Armenian Question,” a complex knot of dilemmas pertaining to humanitarian intervention, empire, and the evolution of international cooperation, arose time and again in these years, as Armenian people suffered successive massacres under the crumbling Ottoman Empire. At the start of Laderman’s book, the United States still relied on missionary groups—not ambassadors—as its representatives in many parts of the world, and the Sublime Porte in Istanbul still controlled most of the Middle East; by the end, the United States is firmly ensconced as a great power, the League of Nations has been both formed and rapidly undermined, and European colonial mandates controlled much of the Middle East. Sharing the Burden provides a vivid window into these significant transformations, all while charting how various U.S. presidents, missionary leaders, and British officials responded to the question of humanitarian intervention to save the Armenians. Along the way, Laderman brings to light many forgotten projects of the period: an Anglo-American colonial alliance, the drive to establish a U.S.-controlled mandate in Armenia, and the salience of the Armenian question for the American public—tantalizing counterfactuals, indeed.