(1956) works as a linguist at the University of Amsterdam, specializing in Turkish literature, ethnic variaties of Dutch, bi-lingualism and language and identity. With Hanneke van der Heijden she translated among others My Name is Red and Snow by Nobel prize winner Orhan Pamuk and The Flea Palace by Elif Shafak. The two also edited a Dutch anthology of modern Turkish short stories.
Archive available for: Margreet Dorleijn
On Sunday afternoon, Tegenspraak (Counter Talk) a programme in cooperation with Winternachten with literature from the Turkish region, took place in Tropentheater Amsterdam. For a long time there has been a critical tradition in Turkish literature, with writers aiming their grievances at the powers that be. As early as the Ottoman Empire there has been sharp criticism, notably from the poet Tefik Fikret. Fikret shuns the Sultan and all religion. He takes a stand against everything that is regarded as holy and against the glorification of history. For the programme Tegenspraak: Turkish Controverses five Turkish authors were invited, all of them writing in the critical literary tradition of Fikret, authors who in their literary work and in columns deal with politics and society.
The writers treated the audience on their literary current affairs. The programme was hosted by Margreet Dorleijn and Funda Müjde. See www.tropentheater.nl.
In the crash course 'How to Bluff Your Way into Turkish Literature' the richness of Turkish language and literature was presented. No fewer than five writers had been invited by Winternachten: three writers from Turkey, a Turkish poet from the Greek part of Cyprus, and a writer from Azerbaijan (Azeri is a Turkish language).
The diversity of the guests should have been a sign of the complexity of the subject: Turkish is not only spoken in Turkey and the country itself knows several different languages. In Turkey, literature is still used for activistic and emancipatory goals contrary to contemporary Dutch literature.
In presenting fragments of their own work, the social context of the work clearly stands out: corruption, the influential role of the militairy apparatus, the problems of poor communities and the difficult access to good education for these groups. By the end of the afternoon, it's clear that Turkish literature indeed consists of much more then the work of Nobel Prize winner Orhan Pamuk. Turkish literature proves to be broad and vivid, consisting of socially concerned writers.