In January 1962 the first issue of Pakin (“Altar”), the literary and cultural monthly, was published in Beirut. Its executive editor was Garo Sassouni, and its editors were Yetvart Boyajian and Boghos Snabian. A cluster of writers, including Haroutioun Keghart, Dikran Vosgouni, Papken Papazian, and Vahe Oshagan, were members of the editorial staff.
The 18th General Assembly of the Armenian Revolutionary Federation (ARF) convened in the end of 1963, welcomed “Pakin” as a monthly magazine published to meet the literary and artistic needs of the Armenian Diaspora.
“Pakin’s” commitment was declared in its first issue in an article entitled “At the altar.” The new magazine aspired to become the enthusiastic platform that would group around it diasporan writers. It aimed at motivating, as well as creditably presenting the literary works of Armenian authors.
Furnishing both established and novice authors with the same care and attention, “Pakin” would enhance the debut and self-establishment of many new literary names.
The literary monthly was not satisfied with the already-accepted literary genres. Aware of the need to get in touch with new literary waves, “Pakin” made way for foreign writers and avant-garde literary movements.
Since the very beginning, “Pakin” firmly recognized the right of continuity of nations and cultures. It rejected the predominance of the material over the spiritual. It believed in the supremacy of the ideal and inner powers.
In 1970, following the death of Yetvart Boyadjian, editorial responsibility for “Pakin” was handed to Boghos Snabian. The 20 special issues dedicated to prominent Armenian writers, as well as the uninterrupted publication of “Pakin” first as a monthly, then as a quarterly are the fruits of his long efforts.
“Pakin” continued to gather around it senior and novice writers. The magazine published unpublished materials, translated the best of foreign literature into Armenian, and above all became a diligent guardian of Western Armenian. It reprehended plagiarism, opposed literary distortions, and played a praiseworthy role in developing linguistic skills, as well as literary and cultural tastes.
In 2003, Hagop Balian was appointed as Editor of “Pakin” in the consequence of the distinguished Editor Boghos Snabian’s health problems. Sonya Kilejian was appointed as Assistant Editor, after which “Pakin” was presented to its readers with a new image.
After the Assistant Editor moved out in 2007, Arpi Hamparian was appointed as Editorial Secretary of “Pakin”. Seda Grigorian was Deputy Editor of “Pakin” from May 2010 to November 2012. Nazo Kevorkian was Editorial Secretary of “Pakin” until June 2014. Nora Parseghian has held the Editor’s Office since November 2014.
It should be noted that “Pakin” was published due to the financial support of succeeding ARF bureaus and the Hamazkayin Central Committee. Due to its creative merit, unification of Armenian and diasporan literary forces, as well as its mission of preserving the Western-Armenian culture, “Pakin” has occupied a unique place in the Armenian-diasporan press.