The articles contained in this volume collectively provide a critical overview of Turkish literature from its earliest phases in the sixth century well into the Republican period, including pieces detailing the literature of the Ottoman as well as those dealing with Europeanization. In so doing, the author illustrates the evolution of Turkish culture as reflected in the literary experience.
Exploring specific genres and themes, several articles detail the development of drama from Karagoz and Orta oyunu to contemporary Western theatre, the propaganda functions of poetry, and the important place of folk literature. In addition, the volume focuses on some of the leading figures of Turkish literature, ranging from Mevlana Celaleddin Rumi, Yunus Emre, and Süleyman the Magnificent, to Sait Faik and modern poets such as Nazim Hikmet, Orhan Veli Kanik, and Melih Cevdet Anday. Whether read as a whole or as individual articles, the book gives Western readers a broad and long overdue entry into the rich landscape of traditional and contemporary Turkish literature and culture. For scholars, it is an invaluable resource for courses on Turkish literature and culture.