A native of Van in Ottoman Armenia, Aghasi Khanjyan arrived in the Armenian republic as a refugee. Attending Gevorgyan Seminary at Etchmiadzin, he was quickly drawn to revolutionary activity and soon became a member of the Bolshevik Party. By the early 1930s, Khanjyan had ascended to the post of Armenia’s First Secretary and became a popular leader known for encouraging a flexible policy toward Armenian national expression. His death at the hands of Georgian leader Lavrentii Beria in 1936 became a pivotal moment for Soviet Armenia during the years of the Stalinist repressions. The series is hosted by historian Pietro A. Shakarian and produced by Sona Nersesyan.