Grandma’s Tattoos

In 1919, just at the end of WW I, the Allied forces reclaimed 90,819 Armenian, young girls and children who, during the war years, were forced to become prostitutes to survive, or had given birth to children after forced or arranged marriages or rape. Many of these women were tattooed as a sign that they belonged to abductor. European and American missionaries organized help and picked up and saved thousands of refugees who later were scattered allover the world to places like Beirut, Marseille and Fresno. The story of Grandma’s Tattoos is a personal film about what happened to many Armenian women during the Genocide 1915. Filmmaker and writer Suzanne Khardalian makes a personal journey into her own family to investigate the truth behind Khanoum, her late grandmother.



Country of Production

Year of Production

HDCam, Digi Beta Pal

58 min

Suzanne Khardalian

HB PeÅ Holmquist Film in co-production with SVT, NRK

Original Language
English, Arabic, Armenian, Swedish

English, Armenian, Spanish, French

Festivals / Awards

IDFA Amsterdam 2011
Filmmor Women's FF Istanbul 2012
Golden Apricot FF Yerewan 2012 (Armenian National Film Academy Award)