Turkey Cultural Tour   
Who is Ataturk-Founder of Modern Turkey and Famous Personalities
Who is Ataturk-Founder of Modern Turkey and Famous Personalities
Who is Ataturk-Founder of Modern Turkey and Famous Personalities
Who is Ataturk-Founder of Modern Turkey and Famous Personalities
Who is Ataturk-Founder of Modern Turkey and Famous Personalities
Who is Ataturk-Founder of Modern Turkey and Famous Personalities
Who is Ataturk-Founder of Modern Turkey and Famous Personalities
 Mustafa Kemal ATATURK
Mustafa Kemal, founder of the Turkish Republic, was born in Saloniki on the l9th May 1881 of humble background. His father started out as a customs officer, later becoming a timber merchant. Following his sudden death he left behind a family having to fend for itself.
As a child Mustafa finished primary school in Saloniki, going on to secondary education at Rucholigè School. Despite opposition from his uncle, who had taken on the responsibility of looking after the widow and her two children following the death of his brother, Mustafa entered military school, completing his military training in Istanbul. He succeeded in entering the Military School (Harbiye) where he completed his studies with flying colours, after which he was accepted into the School of the General Staff. In December 1905 he was commissioned as General Staff Captain.
Throughout his studies Mustafa Kemal consistently proved himself a conscientious, aspiring and diligent student who liked to interest himself with particularly difficult and complex problems. Whilst at military school in Saloniki, he distinguished himself in mathematics and literature. At the same time, and due mainly to his own efforts he started to learn French, in which he made considerable progress. Yet another trait of character which began to show through in his early youth was Mustafa's ability to show initiative and exceptionally his ability to give orders, whilst at the same time maintaining a sense of fraternity with his comrades. In the School of the General Staff he pondered long and hard over the hardship caused by the dictatorial rule of Abdullamid, who from within his famous Yildiz Palace spread fear throughout the whole country. Just like his comrades at the school, Mustafa harboured the same feelings of disgust and rebelliousness towards the political regime of the Sultan. For this reason he did not hesitate for one moment about taking part in the secret underground activities going on at the General Staff School, directed towards the overthrow of the Yildiz Regime.
Between the years 1905 and 1918 Mustafa Kemal was deservedly awarded high ranking posts in the military chain of command. He became Chief of General Staff of the army that was sent out from Saloniki to put down the uprising of the l3th April 1909, a movement designed to return the country to Hamadic Absolutism and which had started with the non recognition of the Constitution that had been declared on the 23rd July 1908. Mustafa proved to have special qualities in the organisation and management of this army of oppression, known as the Army of the Movement. In 1910 he lead the Turkish Forces during military manoeuvres in the Province of Picardy in France. In 1911 he fought in Tripoli against the Italians, and in 1914 whilst serving as Military Attaché in Sofia, he successfully drew the governments attention to the catastrophic results connected with Turkey's entry into the war with Germany and its allies.
During World War I Mustafa fought against the Allied Forces at the Dardanelles, the Russians on the Mus Front, in the east and against the British in Syria and Iraq. During the war he visited Germany as Military Adviser, together with hereditary Prince Vahdettin. At the time of signing the Armistice Declaration on the 30th October 1918 Mustafa Kemal remained at the head of his troops, a command given to him by the German General Liman von Sanders. In the years between 1918 and 1923 Mustafa Kemal was at the forefront of the Turkish War of Independence and involved with the eradication of the antiquated institutions of the Osmanic Empire and in laying the foundations of the new Turkish State. He approached the National Congresses of Erzurum and Sivas to organise and lift the morale of the people in its determined opposition to the Forces of the Entente who were occupying Anatolia.
By the end of these conventions he had managed to convey the message that the idea and the ideals of outdated imperialism ought be dropped so that people within the national boundaries could make decisions in accordance with the principles and general guidelines of an effective national policy. After the occupation of Istanbul by the Forces of the Entente he laid the foundations for the new Turkish State when in 1920 he united the Great National Assembly in Ankara. With the government of the Great National Assembly, of which he was President, Mustafa Kemal fought the Forces of the Entente and the Sultan's army which had remained there in collaboration with the occupying forces. Finally, on the 9th September 1922 he succeeded in driving the Allied Forces back to Izmir, along with the other forces which had managed to penetrate the heartland of Anatolia. By this action he saved the country from invasion by foreign forces.
On the 24th July 1923 the States of the Entente were obliged to recognise the territorial integrity of Turkey in the Treaty of Lausanne. So it came to pass that in quite a spectacular fashion Mustafa Kemal had achieved the first step in his reform programme, the creation of a sovereign and independent state.
From 1923 to 1938 Mustafa Kemal's main work lay in leading the Turkish State and its people along the path in the direction of the outside civilised world. The ideal of an independent fatherland within national boundaries had already been achieved before 1922 and therefore the idea of a truly modern state, whose role relied on the sovereignty of its people, could be developed by the most rational means available during this period.
Following their separation, Sultanat was abolished in 1922, whilst Khalifat continued to exist. At the Proclamation of the Republic on the 29th October 1923 this emporia institution proved to be superfluous and it was likewise abolished. This also resulted in the disbandment of other theocratic institutions on which Khalifat was founded. By the same token all similar types of organisations and theological institutions which had regulated the role of the individual and society in general were closed. Finally by amendment to the constitution, the principle of (secularism) - that all so important factor in community life - was introduced as an anchor of the new democratic and republican constitution. As a result of this new direction, all laws, rules and regulations, institutions and methods of a theological nature that had been an influence on the dealings of state and social order were abolished and various political and social reforms introduced along Western lines, suitably adapted to meet national security and interests.
In brief are mentioned here some of the important reforms introduced under Kemal: the international calendar and time were adopted (1923).
in place of the traditional head garment, the fez, introduced under the rule of Sultan Nahmond II, the West's style of hat became obligatory (1925).
Swiss civil law was introduced adapted to the conditions and needs of the country (1926).
the Latin alphabet was adopted (1928).
The Civil Code, Penal Statute Book and the Trade Law Book were introduced.
The legal position of women and their place in society in the new republic was greatly improved (for example the active and passive voting right at national and local elections).
Only due to the efforts of this great man, which he maintained with exceptional strength of character and persistence, helped along by his ability to work methodically, was it possible to introduce all these reforms. Thanks to his great organising talent he led the country to considerable prosperity and down the path of civilisation and peace.
Kemal laid the foundations of a truly modern Turkey, a democratic, republican and independent state based on national sovereignty. Although these ideas originated from him and were paramount in the foundation of the new state they remain today an integral part of the republican government of our country. The foundation stone, or perhaps even the very soul of Ataturk's spiritual and intellectual philosophy, was the thought of universal peace and although the biggest part of his life was taken up by war, he always considered it a crime.
According to Ataturk war can only be just or justified if it is fought out of sheer necessity or for reasons of national defence, or pursued by a people awaiting their sovereignty, their very lives depending on it.
To live freely and be independent is both a holy right of the individual and of the nation, this right being stronger than power itself. Only by his own personal conviction was he able to frame the all inspiring guiding principle of the Republic of Turkey - "Peace in the country, peace in the world." This principle points with absolute clarity and determination the way forward for the country's future home and foreign policy.
From the ideas that Ataturk held the idea of civilisation should not be overlooked as it is no less important. In the course of his short life he never ceased repeating the fact that views which are based broadly on regional perspective's of the West or East, or on religious perspective's, be they Islam or Christian, often weaken the thoughts of civilisation, as they fail to manifest the small or special characteristics. Civilisation is something whole and exclusively human, a universal property. It therefore goes without saying, that the share every nation in the world has in civilisation is considerable.
In the view of this inspired reformer, mankind has a duty to constantly adapt himself to the needs that reason demand. His guide in life should be science. Following on from these basic beliefs Kemal took it upon himself to provide everyone in the country with an education, at the heart of which lay the creation of citizens having special qualities, or in other words, the sense and direction of the education he wanted to give to the people was very clear in that the Republic needed to produce generations of people whose thinking, beliefs and education were totally free. Not to mention his view of egoism being wholly incompatible with the idea of civilisation "Egoism, whether individual or national is to be condemned". He reminds us that all nations of the world form one large family and that whenever a disaster strikes one of its members, then it is felt by the rest - like the pain felt from a needle penetrating a part of the body and felt throughout the whole body.
With the intention of spreading his ideas within the educational sector, and supported by national campaigns, Kemal continued to put forward his form of humanitarian education, with the aim of producing an enlightened people free from prejudice and intolerance. The desired objective being simply to develop citizens of the world, free from desires such as envy, revenge and conspiracy. In a world inhabited by such communities it might be possible to find an instrument, an organisation that stands above individual states, or in other words: "a body of united nations", whose main purpose is to maintain peace.
In this respect Ataturk's ideas date from the time between the World Wars, particularly that before World War II but are nevertheless topical because in a way Ataturk had predicted the concept of the United Nations.
Furthermore, it was at a time when the ideological battle had reached its climax and for this reason such views were of a prophetic nature.
For a man who had set himself the task of building up a country based on the most convincing human achievements and under the banner of reason.
The Inauguration of the Monument to the "Unknown Soldier" held in Dumlupınar on the 30th August 1924
Mustafa Kemal was again dressed very well, his eyes sparkling and radiant with happiness over the "Great Victory" and accompanied by his wife Latife Hanim and wartime comrades. He talked to the crowd, his beloved people, saying; "A country may be conquered forcibly, but that in itself is not enough to govern its people. As long as its soul has not been conquered, its determination and resolution cannot be destroyed and it is a nation impossible to rule" …. "Undoubtable, the foundation laid will give to the new Turkish Republic and state its stability. The eternal life of the Turkish Republic has been crowned here. The Turkish blood shed on the battlefields and the souls of the martyrs in heaven will be the immortal guardians of our state and republic" …. "Gentlemen, the most important effect of this great victory is that the Turkish Nation has gained absolute control of its independence. If we remember the years of suffering under the reign of khans, monarchs, sultans and caliphs, we can now understand the importance of gaining independence." In connection with the nations independence Mustafa Kemal stated; "Gentlemen, the nation's independence is a power that breaks chains and burns crowns and thrones. Unions which were based on the slavery of nations, will always be condemned to decline."
On the Cal Plain, Ataturk expressed his opinion about the sultans and caliphs saying: "My friends, expelling from Turkey those who sat in their palaces relying on nothing other than (Turkishness), and who marched with our enemies against Anatolia and against (Turkishness) has proved an even greater mission than that of removing the enemy from our country. (!) Absolute control of the Turkish Nation, our country and ancestral heritage, could only be achieved following the closure of these superfluous and harmful offices.
Ataturk in expressing his opinion about technology and science stated; "Our country not only needs cultural development and wealth but also science, technology, civilisation, freedom of thought and a free ideology. Our honour, independence and existence must support us in the basic and important work necessary to achieve the interests of the nation.
The people who ruled Turkey for centuries thought of everything except Turkey itself! Our nation is unselfish in its desire for independence and land and this has been proven. Our nation is the guardian of reform. A nation encompassing such high values cannot therefore be led astray by others."
At midnight on Thursday the 3rd September 1936, during the Balkan Festival at the Beylerbeyi Palace, Ataturk honoured the gala with a visit. Yugoslavian, Bulgarian, Romanian and Turkish delegations and folk groups took part. When Ataturk arrived all the groups sang together; "Welcome, Mustafa Kemal Pasa". General Kazim Dirik read out Ataturk's speech to the guests; "The fortunes of mankind must be realised by moving closer together, by loving each other and by meeting each other with pure feelings and thoughts. A symbol of this high human ideal is our being here together this night. For this reason, I express my great appreciation to our important guests."
Later, a Turkish child communicated Ataturk's notes to the guests. "A nation is able to carry out reforms in many ways and to succeed in them. The reformation of music however reflects the exceptional development of a nation.
Yasar Kemal Turkish novelist
Yaşar Kemal, Yaşar also spelled Yashar, original name Kemal Sadik Gogceli (born 1922, Hemite, Tur.), Turkesh novelist of Kurdish descent best known for his stories of village life and for his outspoken advocacy on behalf of the dispossessed.
At age five Kemal saw his father murdered in a mosque and was himself blinded in one eye. He left secondary school after two years and worked at a variety of odd jobs. In 1950 he was arrested for his political activism, but he was ultimately acquitted. The following year Kemal moved to Istanbul and was hired as a reporter for the daily newspaper Cumhuriyet, where he worked in various capacities until 1963. During this time he published a novella, Teneke (1955; “The Tin Pan”), and the novel Ince Memed (1955; Memed, My Hawk). The latter, a popular tale about a bandit and folk hero, was translated into more than 20 languages and was made into a movie in 1984. Kemal wrote three more novels featuring Memed as the protagonist. In 1962 he joined the Turkish Labour Party, and in 1967 he founded Ant, a weekly political magazine informed by Marxist ideology. He was arrested again in 1971, and in 1996 a court sentenced him to a deferred jail term for alleged seditious statements about the Turkish government’s oppression of the Kurdish people.
Kemal’s other novels include the trilogy Ortadirek (1960; The Wind from the Plain), Yer demir, gök bakir (1963; Iron Earth, Copper Sky), Ölmez otu (1968; The Undying Grass), and Tanyeri horozları (2002; “The Cocks of Dawn”). He also published volumes of nonfiction—including Peri bacaları (1957; “The Fairy Chimneys”), a collection of reportage, and Baldaki tuz (1974; “The Salt in the Honey”), a book of political essays—as well as the children’s book Filler sultanı ile kırmızı sakallı topal karınca (1977; “The Sultan of the Elephants and the Red-Bearded Lame Ant”). In 2007 an operatic adaptation of Kemal’s Teneke premiered at La Scala, in Milan.
Muazzez Ilmiye Cıg, Assyriologist
 Muazzez İlmiye Çığ, (born Muazzez İlmiye İtil on 20 June 1914, Bursa, Turkey) is a Turkish archaeologist and Assyriologist who specializes in the study of Sumerian civilization. In 2006, at the age of 92, she received world-wide coverage in international media, upon publication of her 2005 book which described, among other topics, how her research into the history of the headscarf revealed that it did not originate in Judaism or Islam, but was worn five thousand years ago by Sumerian priestesses who initiated young men into sex.
Muazzez İlmiye İtil's parents were Crimean Tatars both of whose families had immigrated to Turkey, with her father's side settling in the town of Merzifon, and her mother's side in the northwestern city of Bursa, Turkey's fourth-largest, which was, at the time, a major regional administrative center of the Ottoman Empire. Muazzez Ilmiye was born in Bursa, a few weeks before the outbreak of World War I and, by the time of her fifth birthday in 1919, the Greek invasion of Izmir prompted her father, who was a teacher, to seek safety for the family by moving to the city of Çorum where young Muazzez completed her primary studies. She subsequently returned to Bursa and, by the time of her 17th birthday in 1931, graduated from its training facility for elementary school teachers.
Educational credentials
After nearly five years of educating children in another northwestern city, Eskişehir, she began studies in 1936 at Ankara University's Department of Hittitology, established the previous year by modern Turkey's founding father, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk. Among her teachers were two of the period's most eminent scholars of Hittite culture and history, Hans Gustav Güterbock and Benno Landsberger, both Hitler-era German-Jewish refugees, who spent World War II as professors in Turkey.
Uğur Mumcu
Turkish investigative journalist for the leading Kemalist broadsheet, Cumhuriyet. He was assassinated by a bomb placed in his car, outside his home.Uğur Mumcu was born on August 22nd, 1942. After his studies at the Ankara University Faculty of Law, he practiced as a lawyer for some time. Switching to journalism in 1974, Mumcu defended democracy and human rights in his writings, which he based entirely on concrete knowledge and facts, never betraying the principles of his profession. He regarded "the crime of our age" is to remain silent and indifferent about events of life.
"A murderer is a murderer, no matter if from the right or left."
He pressed for the investigation of many cases of the murder, without looking their political identity, of those who were murdered for their convictions and from terrorist attacks. He provided concrete evidence about the relation between acts of terror and arms traffickers and about the national and international aspects of the steadily rising reactionary organizations. He shared with the people the results of his investigation that revealed the interconnections of the problem of Kurds and Southeast Turkey, arms trafficking, terrorism, corruption, foreign intelligence services, the Mafia and the attempted assassination of the Pope.
He served as the "Memory of the People", owing greatly to his understanding of journalism and feeling of responsibility that the identity of his sources of information would never be disclosed. Uğur Mumcu was a pioneer in investigative journalism in Turkey, and he was internationally renowned as "an expert on international terrorism". With his pen alone, he fought against imperialism, corruption, reactionary ideology and terrorism. Mumcu was awarded many times for his work.
Uğur Mumcu was assassinated by the explosion of a bomb that was fixed to his car on January 24th, 1993. During his lifetime he published 25 books analysing and discussing the topical problems of Turkey. After his murder, his family founded the "Uğur Mumcu Investigative Journalism Foundation" to continue spreading his thoughts and principles and to train young journalists who will share his understanding of journalism. The Foundation has compiled Mumcu's essays and research articles, which he composed between 1962 and 1993, in 40 books.
FAZIL SAY  a composer  and  he is a pianist
Born in 1970 in Ankara, Turkey, Fazıl Say studied piano and composition at the Ankara State Conservatory. At the age of seventeen he was awarded a scholarship that enabled him to study for five years with David Levine at the Robert Schumann Institute in Düsseldorf. From 1992 to 1995 he continued his studies at the Berlin Conservatory. In 1994 he was the winner of the Young Concert Artists International Auditions, which gave a rapid start to his international career.
Fazıl Say is a regular guest with the New York Philharmonic, the Israel Philharmonic, the Baltimore Symphony, the St Petersburg Philharmonic , the BBC Philharmonic, the Orchestre National de France and other leading orchestras across the globe. He has appeared at the Lucerne Festival, the Ruhr Piano Festival, the Rheingau Music Festival , the Verbier Festival, the Montpellier Festival, the Beethoven Festival Bonn, and in all the world’s leading concert halls, including the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, the Berlin Philharmonie, the Vienna Musikverein, Suntory Hall in Tokyo, Carnegie Hall and Avery Fisher Hall in New York, and many others. In the 2003/04 season he made debuts at the Salzburg Festival, Lincoln Center Festival in New York, Harrod’s Piano Series in London and the World Piano Series in Tokyo . His chamber music partners include Yuri Bashmet and Shlomo Mintz. In 2004 he made a major tour of Europe and the USA with Maxim Vengerov, appearing at such venues as Carnegie Hall, the Vienna Musikverein, the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, the Barbican Centre in London, and the Salzburg Festival. He will tour Europe and Asia with Akiko Suwanai in 2006.
Say’s passion for jazz and improvisation led him to found a ‘Worldjazz’ quartet with the Turkish ney virtuoso Kudsi Ergüner. During the summer of 2000 the quartet performed to a triumphal reception in St. Denis, Paris, Montpellier, at the Montreux Jazz Festival, the Istanbul Jazz Festival and the Juan-les-Pins Festival. In 2005 he made a return visit to Montreux for a concert and workshop, appearing with Bobby McFerrin among others .
Fazıl Say is just as much a composer as he is a pianist. He wrote the work Black Hymns at the age of sixteen. In 1991 he premiered his Concerto for Piano and Violin with the Berlin Symphony Orchestra, and in 1996 his second piano concerto Silk Road was given its first performance in Boston. Fazil Say played the latter work more than a dozen times in the course of the 2003/04 season. His oratorio Nazim, based on poems by the famous Turkish poet Nazim Hikmet and commissioned by the Turkish Ministry of Culture, was premiered in Ankara in 2001 in the presence of Turkey’s President. Say gave the world premiere of his Piano Concerto no. 3 (commissioned by Radio France and Kurt Masur) in Paris with the Orchestre National de France under Eliahu Inbal in January 2002, to great public and critical acclaim. His oratorio Requiem for Metin Altiok was premiered in 2003 at the Istanbul Festival before an audience of 5000. In May 2005 he gave the premiere of his Fourth Piano Concerto, commissioned by ETH Zürich, in Lucerne. He has composed highly virtuosic adaptations for piano and orchestra of such works as Mozart’s Rondo alla turca and Paganini Jazz. The city of Vienna has commissioned a ballet for Mozart Year, which has been given its first performance there on February 1st, 2006. He is also writing a new solo piece for the 2006 Salzburg Festival, and an orchestral work is at the planning stage. In 2003 he was appointed ‘Artist in Residence’ by Radio France, a position he also holds at the 2005 Bremen Festival.
Fazıl Say’s first recording, a Mozart disc released in 1998, garnered rave reviews from the press. His discography includes Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue and I Got Rhythm Variations with the New York Philharmonic and Kurt Masur, a Bach recital, and Stravinsky’s own arrangement of Le Sacre du Printemps for four hands (in which Say plays both parts). He has received numerous international awards for this recording, including the 2001 Echo-Preis Klassik and the 2001 German Music Critics’ Best Recording of the Year Award. He has performed the work live to ovations in concert halls around the world. Another of his recordings couples Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto no.1 (with the St Petersburg Philharmonic under Yuri Temirkanov) and Franz Liszt’s Piano Sonata.
His first recording under a new contract with Naïve, exclusively devoted to his own works, attracted international attention. The second, acclaimed worldwide as a significant Mozart release, presents three of that composer’s concertos with the Zurich Chamber Orchestra under Howard Griffiths. Fall 2005 a new CD was released with sonatas by Ludwig van Beethoven.
Highlights of his schedule for 2005/6 include appearances at the Salzburg, Verbier, and Lucerne Festivals and at Mozart festivals in Vienna, Zurich, and Warsaw, as well as tours of the USA, Germany, Japan, Israel, China, Italy (including appearances with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra), South Africa and many other countries.
In May 2005 he composed his first soundtrack, for the film Ultima Thule by the Swiss director Hans-Ulrich Schlumpf (who made Congress of Penguins).
In the summer of 2005 the Franco-German television channel Arte shot a full-length portrait of Fazil Say in Istanbul, Aspendos, Munich, and other places, which was broadcasted in early 2006.
In 2005 a DVD production of his work for chorus and orchestra Nazim was filmed in Aspendos.
European Union Piano Contest, 1991
Young Concert Solists Contest European First Award, 1994
Young Concert Solists Contest World First Award, 1995
Radio France/Beracasa Foundation Award, 1995
Paul A. Fish Foundation Award, 1995
Boston Metamorphosen Orchestra Solist Award, 1995
Maurice Clairmont Foundation Award, 1995
Telerama Award, 1998, 2001
RTL TV Award, 1998
Le Monde de la Musique Award, 2000
Diapason d’Or ( Golden Disc ) Award, 2000
Classica Award, 2000
Le Monde Award, 2000
Austria Radio-Tv Award 2001
Deutsche Phono Akademie ECHO Award, 2001
Yıldız Kenter
Style of Art : Actress
Branch of Art : Theater
Yıldız Kenter was born in Istanbul in 1928. After her graduation from the Ankara State Conservatory, she worked in the Ankara State Theatre for 11 years. She won a Rockefeller Scholarship and studied new techniques in acting and acting education at the American Theatre Wing, Neighborhood Play House and Actor’s Studio. Kenter was appointed to the Ankara State Conservatory as a lecturer. She left Ankara State Conservatory in 1959 and worked with Muhsin Ertuğrul for a year. She founded Kent Oyuncuları (Kent Actors) with her brother Müşfik Kenter and her husband Şükran Güngör. Later, they consistently played “Değişen Eğitim Metotları” and “Oyunculuk Metotolar” in the US and England. In 1962, Kenter was awarded as “the woman of the year” by the Theater Services. She was also awarded Altın Portakal three times. Kenter has acted in many plays in Russia, the US, England, Germany, Holland, Denmark, Canada, Yugoslavia and Cyprus in English and Turkish. She has performed more than 100 plays of famous dramatists such as Shakespeare, Chekhov, Brecht, Ionesco, Pinter, Albee, Tennessee Williams, Alan Ayckbourn, Arthur Miller, Brian Dreil, Neil Simon, Athol Dugard, Serfey Koovkin, Melih Cevdet Anday, Necati Cumalı, Güner Sümer, Adalet Ağaoğlu, Zeki Özturanlı, Güngör Dilmen and Muzaffer İzgü. Kenter had taught acting for 37 years. She received “the best actress” in the Ulvi Uraz Prize two times and Avni Dilligil award three times. she was honored as one of the most successful 100 women in the 21st century by the Central Organization of Women′s Associations in Finland. In 2010, she received the "Best Successful Actress of the Year" in the 15th Sadri Alışık Film and Theater Awards for the play "Kraliçe Lear" she acted with the Kent Oyuncuları.
1981, award "the state artist"
1984, award "Adalaide Ristori" by the Italian Cultural Union in Rome
1989, award "the best actress" for the role in the film “Hanım” in the Bastia Film Festival in Corsica
1991, award for the “the Melvin Jones” by Lions Club
1994, award "the Olağanüstü Yorum" (extraordinary interpretation) for the role of Forsa in the theater “Konken Partisi”
1995, honorary prize from the Turkish Ministry of Culture and Tourism
1995, award "Mevlana Brotherhood and Peace" for her contribution to the Turkish Theater Art.
1996, “the best actress” for the role of Jülide in the theater “Ramiz and Jülide” by the Magazine Journalists Society
1997, honorary prize for her contribution to the Turkish Theater Art by the International Istanbul Festival
1998, award "the women artist of the year" by the Ankara Sanat Kurumu (the Ankara Art Association)
1998, honorary prize for her contribution to Muhsin Ertuğrul Yaşam Boyu Tiyatro Sanatı
1998, "Big Culture and Art Prize" for the role of Madam Arcadina in the theater “Martı”
1999, Afife Tiyatro Award "the best actress"
1951, Vatan İçin
1964, Ağaçlar Ayakta Ölür
1971, Anneler ve Kızları
1966, Pembe Kadın
1966, Isyancılar
1967, Yaşlı Gözler
1972, Fatma Bacı
1973, Ablam
1974, Kızım Ayşe
1977, Çöl Faresi
1988, Hanım
2000, Güle Güle
2001, Büyük Adam Küçük Aşk
2002, şk ve Gurur (TV series)
2005, Saklambaç (TV series)
2005, Sen Ne Dilersen
2007, Balıketi (TV)
2007, Beyaz Melek
Nasreddin Hodja
Nasreddin Hodja is Turkey's (and perhaps all of Islam's) best-known trickster. His legendary wit and droll trickery were possibly based on the exploits and words of a historical imam. Nasreddin reputedly was born in 1208 in the village of Horto near Sivrihisar. In 1237 he moved to Aksehir, where he died in the Islamic year 683 (1284 or 1285). As many as 350 anecdotes have been attributed to the Hodja, as he most often is called. Hodja is a title meaning teacher or scholar. He frequently is compared with the northern European trickster Till Eulenspiegel.
The many spelling variations for Nasreddin include: NasreArchiddin, Nasrettin, Nasrudin, Nasr-id-deen, Nasr-eddin, Nasirud-din, Nasr-ud-Din, Nasr-Eddin, and Nasr-Ed-Dine.
The many spelling variations for Hodja include: Hodja, Hodscha, Hoca, Chotza, Khodja, and Khoja
Everyone Is Right
Once when Nasreddin Hodja was serving as qadi, one of his neighbors came to him with a complaint against a fellow neighbor.
The Hodja listened to the charges carefully, then concluded, "Yes, dear neighbor, you are quite right."
Then the other neighbor came to him. The Hodja listened to his defense carefully, then concluded, "Yes, dear neighbor, you are quite right."
The Hodja's wife, having listened in on the entire proceeding, said to him, "Husband, both men cannot be right."
The Hodja answered, "Yes, dear wife, you are quite right."
Faith Moves Mountains
The Hodja was boasting about the power of his faith.
"If your faith is so strong, then pray for that mountain to come to you," said a skeptic, pointing to a mountain in the distance.
The Hodja prayed fervently, but the mountain did not move. He prayed more, but the mountain remained unmoved.
Finally the Hodja got up from his knees and began walking toward the mountain. "I am a humble man," he said, "and the faith of Islam is a practical one. If the mountain will not come to the Hodja, then the Hodja will go to the mountain."
The Smell of Soup and the Sound of Money
A beggar was given a piece of bread, but nothing to put on it. Hoping to get something to go with his bread, he went to a nearby inn and asked for a handout. The innkeeper turned him away with nothing, but the beggar sneaked into the kitchen where he saw a large pot of soup cooking over the fire. He held his piece of bread over the steaming pot, hoping to thus capture a bit of flavor from the good-smelling vapor.
Suddenly the innkeeper seized him by the arm and accused him of stealing soup.
"I took no soup," said the beggar. "I was only smelling the vapor."
"Then you must pay for the smell," answered the innkeeper.
The poor beggar had no money, so the angry innkeeper dragged him before the qadi.
Now Nasreddin Hodja was at that time serving as qadi, and he heard the innkeeper's complaint and the beggar's explanation.
"So you demand payment for the smell of your soup?" summarized the Hodja after the hearing.
"Yes!" insisted the innkeeper.
"Then I myself will pay you," said the Hodja, "and I will pay for the smell of your soup with the sound of money."
Thus saying, the Hodja drew two coins from his pocket, rang them together loudly, put them back into his pocket, and sent the beggar and the innkeeper each on his own way.
Nazim Hikmet(1902~1963?)
NAZIM HIKMET, popularly known and critically acclaimed in Turkey as the first and foremost modern Turkish poet, is known around the world as one of the greatest international poets of the twentieth century, and his poetry has been translated into more than fifty languages. Born in 1902 in Salonika, where his father was in the foreign service, Hikmet grew up in Istanbul. His mother was an artist, and his pasha grandfather wrote poetry; through their circle of friends Hikmet was introduced to poetry early; publishing first poems at seventeen. He attended the Turkish naval academy, but during the Allied occupation of Istanbul following the First World War, he left to teach in eastern Turkey. In 1922, after a brief first marriage ended in annulment, he crossed the border and made his way to Moscow, attracted by the Russian Revolution and its promise of social justice. At Moscow University he got to know students and artists from all over the world. Hikmet returned to Turkey in 1924, after the Turkish War of Independence, but was soon arrested for working on a leftist magazine. In 1926 he managed to escape to Russia, where he continued writing poetry and plays, met Mayakovsky, and worked with Meyerhold. A general amnesty allowed him to return to Turkey in 1928. Since the Communist Party had been outlawed by then, he found himself under constant surveillance by the secret police and spent five of the next ten years in prison on a variety of trumped-up charges. In 1933, for example, he was jailed for putting illegal posters, but when his case came to trial, it was thrown out of court for lack of evidence. Meanwhile, between 1929 and 1936 he published nine books - five collections and four long poems- that revolutionized Turkish poetry, flouting Ottoman literary conventions and introducing free verse and colloquial diction. While these poems established him as a new major poet, he also published several plays and novels and worked as a bookbinder, proofreader, journalist, translator, and screenwriter to support an extended family that included his second wife, her two children, and his widowed mother.
Then, in January 1938 he was arrested for inciting the Turkish armed forces to revolt and sentenced to twenty-eight years in prison on the grounds that military cadets were reading his poems, particularly The Epic of Sheik Bedrettin. Published in 1936, this long poem based on a fifteenth-century peasant rebellion against Ottoman rule was his last book to appear in Turkey during his lifetime. His friend Pablo Neruda relates Hikmet's account of how he was treated after his arrest: Accused of attempting to incite the Turkish navy into rebellion, Nazim was condemned to the punishments of hell. The trial was held on a warship. He told me he was forced to walk on the ship's bridge until he was too weak to stay on his feet, then they stuck him into a section of the latrines where the excrement rose half a meter above the floor. My brother poet felt his strength failing him: my tormentors are keeping an eye on me, they want to watch me suffer. His strength came back with pride. He began to sing, low at first, then louder, and finally at the top of his lungs. He sang all the songs, all the love poems he could remember, his own poems, the ballads of the peasants, the people's battle hymns. He sang everything he knew. And so he vanquished the filth and his torturers.* In prison, Hikmet's Futurist-inspired, often topical early poetry gave way to poems with a more direct manner and a more serious tone. Enclosed in letters to his family and friends, these poems were subsequently circulated in manuscript. He not only composed some of his greatest lyrics in prison, but produced, between 1941 and 1945, his epic masterpiece, Human Landscapes. He also learned such crafts as weaving and woodworking in order to support himself and his family. In the late Forties, while still in prison, he divorced his second wife and married for a third time. In 1949 an international committee, including Pablo Picasso, Paul Robeson, and Jean Paul Sartre, was formed in Paris to campaign for Hikmet's release, and in 1950 he was awarded the World Peace Prize. The same year, he went on an eighteen-day hunger strike, despite a recent heart attack, and when Turkey's first democratically elected government came to power, he was released in a general amnesty.
Within a year, however, his persecution had resumed full force. Simone de Beauvoir recalls him describing the events of that time: He told me how a year after he came out of prison there were two attempts to murder him (with cars, in the narrow streets of Istanbul) And then they tried to make him do the military service on the Russian frontier: he was fifty. The doctor, a major, said to him: "Half an hour standing in the sun and you're a dead man. But I shall give you a certificate of health." So then he escaped, across the Bosphorus in a tiny motorboat on a stormy night -when it was calm the straits were too well guarded. He wanted to reach Bulgaria, but it was impossible with a high sea running. He passed a Rumanian cargo ship, he began to circle it, shouting his name. They saluted him, they waived handkerchiefs, but they didn't stop. He followed them and went on circling them in the height of the storm; after two hours they stopped, but without picking him up. His motor stalled, he thought he was done for. At last they hauled him aboard; they had been telephoning to Bucharest for instructions. Exhausted, half dead, he staggered into the officers' cabin; there was an enormous photograph of him with the caption: SAVE NAZIM HIKMET. The most ironical part, he added, was that he had already been at liberty for a year.**
Taken to Moscow, he was given a house in the writer's colony of Peredelkino outside the city; the Turkish government denied his wife and child permission to join him. Although he suffered a second heart attack in 1952, Hikmet traveled widely during his exile, visiting not only Eastern Europe but Rome, Paris, Havana, Peking, and Tanganyika: I traveled through Europe, Asia, and Africa with my dream / only the Americans didn't give me the visa. Stripped of his Turkish citizenship in 1959, he chose to become a the citizen of Poland, explaining he had inherited his blue eyes and red hair from a Polish ancestor who was a seventeenth-century revolutionary. In 1959 he also remarried again. The increasingly breathless pace of his late poems - often unpunctuated and, toward the end, impatient even with line divisions- conveys a sense of time accelerating as he grows older and travels faster and farther than ever before in his life. During his exile his poems were regularly printed abroad, his Selected Poems was published in Bulgaria in 1954, and generous translations of his work subsequently appeared there and in Greece, Germany, Italy, and the USSR. He died of a heart attack in Moscow in June 1963.
After his death, Hikmet's books began to reappear in Turkey; in 1965 and 1966, for example, more than twenty of his books were published there, some of them reprints of earlier volumes and others works appearing for the first time. The next fifteen years saw the gradual publication of his eight volume Collected Poems, along with his plays, novels, letters, and even children's stories. At the same time, various selections of his poems went through multiple printings, and numerous biographies and critical studies of his poetry were published. But except for brief periods between 1965 and 1980, his work has been suppressed in his native country for the past half century. Since his death, major translations of his poetry has continued to appear in England, France, Germany, Greece, Poland, Spain, and the United States; for example, Yannis Ritsos's Greek versions had gone through eight printings a of 1977, and Philippe Soupault's 1964 anthology was reissued in France as recently as 1982. And in 1983 alone, new translations of Hikmet's poems were published in French, German, and Russian. A collection of Hikmet's finest shorter poems in English translation, this book brings together for the first time -in substantially revised new versions- the better part of two earlier selections, the long-out-of-print Things I didn't know I loved and The Epic of Sheik Bedrettin, as well as a number of important lyrics previously published in magazines but hitherto uncollected.
Like Whitman, Hikmet speaks of himself, his country, and the world in the same breath. At once personal and public, his poetry records his life without reducing it to self-consciousness; he affirms reality of facts at the same time that he insists in the validity of his feelings. His human presence or the controlling figure of his personality - playful, optimistic, and capable of childlike joy- keeps his poems open, public, and committed to social and artistic change. And in the perfect oneness of his life and art, Hikmet emerges as a heroic figure. His early poems proclaim this unity as a faith: art is an event, he maintains, in social as well as literary history, and a poet's bearing in art is inseparable from his bearing in life. The rest of Hikmet's life gave him ample opportunity to act upon this faith and, in fact to deepen it. As Terrence Des Pres observes, Hikmet's exemplary life and special vision - at once historical and timeless, Marxist and mystical - had unique consequences for his art: Simply because in his art and in his person Hikmet opposes the enemies of the human spirit in harmony with itself and the earth, he can speak casually and yet with a seriousness that most modern American poets never dream of attempting.*** In a sense, Hikmet's prosecutors honored him by believing a book of poems could incite the military to revolt; indeed, the fact that he was persecuted attests to the credibility of his belief in the vital importance of his art. Yet, the suffering his faith cost him -he never compromised in this life or art- is only secondary to the suffering that must have gone into keeping that faith. The circumstances of Hikmet's life are very much to the point, not only because he continually chose to remain faithful to his vision, but also because his life and art form a dramatic whole. Sartre remarked that Hikmet conceived of a human being as something to be created. In his life no less than in his art, Hikmet forged this new kind of person, who was heroic by virtue of being a creator. This conception of the artist as a hero and of the hero as a creator saves art from becoming a frivolous activity in the modern world; as Hikmet's career dramatizes, poetry is a matter of life and death.
MIMAR SINAN (The Architect) 1490 - 1588
He is an architect who grew up in one of the most splendid periods of the Ottoman State, and who contributed to this era with his works.
Various sources state that Sinan was the architect of around 360 structures which included 84 mosques, 51 small mosques ("mescit"), 57 schools of theology ("medrese"), 7 schools for Koran reciters ("darülkurra"), 22 mausoleums ("türbe"), 17 Alm Houses ("imaret"), 3 hospitals ("darüssifa"), 7 aquaducts and arches, 48 inns ("Caravansarai"), 35 palaces and mansions, 8 vaults and 46 baths. Sinan, who held the position of chief architect of the palace, which meant being the top manager of construction works of the Ottoman Empire, for nearly 50 years, worked with a large team of assistants consisting of architects and master builders.
The development and maturing stages of Sinan can be marked with three major works. The first two of these are in Istanbul - Sehzade Mosque which he calls his apprenticeship period work, Süleymaniye Mosque which is the work of his qualification stage, and Selimiye Mosque in Edirne the product of his master stage. Sehzade Mosque is the first of the grand mosques Sinan has created. Mihrimah Sultan Mosque which is also known as the Uskudar Quay Mosque was completed in the same year and has an original design with its main dome supported by three half domes. When Sinan reached the age of 70, he had completed the Süleymaniye Mosque and its Complex. This building, situated on one of the hills of Istanbul facing the Golden Horn, and built in the name of Süleyman the Magnificent between 1550-57, is one of the symbolic monuments of the period. The diameter of the dome which exceeds 31 meters at Selimiye Mosque which Sinan completed when he was 80, is the most significant example of the level of achievement Sinan reached in architecture. Mimar Sinan has reached his artistic summit with the design, architecture, tile decorations, land stone workmanship displayed at Selimiye.
Sehzade Mosque Suleymaniye Mosque Selimiye Mosque
Another area of architecture where Sinan delivered unique projects are the mausoleums. Mausoleum of Sehzade Mehmed gets attention with its exterior decorations and sliced dome. Rüstem Pasha mausoleum is a very attractive structure in classical style. The mausoleum of Süleyman the Magnificent which is one of his most interesting experimentations has an octagonal body and flat dome. Selim II Mausoleum with has a square plan and is one of the best examples of Turkish mausoleum architecture. Sinan's own mausoleum which is located at the north-east part of the Süleymaniye complex on the other hand, is a very plain structure.
Sinan, in the bridges he built, has masterfully combined art with functionalism. The largest of his work in this group is the nearly 635 m. long Büyükçekmece Bridge in Istanbul. Other significant examples are Silivri Bridge outside of Istanbul, Lüleburgaz (Sokullu Mehmet Pasha) Bridge on Lüleburgaz River, Sinanli Bridge over Ergene River and Drina Bridge which has became the title of the famous novel of Yugoslav author Ivo Andriç.
While Sinan was maintaining and improving the water supply system of Istanbul, he has built arched aqueducts at several locations within the city. Maglova Arch over Alibey River, which is 257 meter long, 35 meters high and displaying two layers of arches is one of the best samples of its kind.
Santa Claus
Once Upon A Time There Was A Man
The jolly, fatherly figure of Father Christmas, with his white beard and pink cheeks, has been eagerly awaited by children at Christmas for centuries. Did you know that this bringer of gifts and protector of the poor and needy actually lived in the South of Turkey? In fact, Saint Nicholas, alias Father Christmas, alias Santa Claus, was a real person who lived near Antalya in the warm climate of southern Turkey rather than in the icy Arctic desert. Born at Patara near Kalkan, he spent most of his life at Myra, 140 kilometers southwest of Antalya.
Saint Nicholas was elected bishop of Myra during the reign of Diocletian and died here around AD 350. The church of St. Nicholas is not where he preached, but was first built around his tomb in the 6th century, and later rebuilt by the Byzantine Emperor Constantine IX in 1043. The bishop was renowned for his charitable deeds, and after his death became the most venerated saint of the Orthodox Christian world, particularly Russia.
When Myra and its shrine were taken by the Moslems, the relics were translated to Bari, Italy, where many Greek immigrants resided. Here a new church was built to house the relics, and Pope Urban II, who held a council at Bari in 1095, was present at the inauguration. From this time onwards Nicholas's cult became almost universal in the West.
His reputation as a miracle-worker was both cause and effect of his many patronages. Countries such as Russia, towns such as St. Nicholas at Wade (Kent), children, sailors, unmarried girls, merchants, pawnbrokers, apothecaries, and perfumiers all claim him as their patron saint. Some of these patronages are linked with episodes in his legendary acts. He was reputed to have given three bags of gold to three girls for their marriage dowries in order to save them from prostitution. It seems that this is the basis for the use of three gold balls as the pawnbroker's sign. The number three appears several times in his legend, as in the case of three boys whom he is said to have raised to life after they were murdered in a brine-tub by a butcher, and in his saving three unjustly condemned men from death, as well as three sailors near the coast of Turkey. From his shrine at Bari there came a substance sometimes called 'manna' or else a fragrant 'myrrh' which explains his patronage of perfumiers: whatever it may have been, it attracted numerous pilgrims to his shrine.
Saint Nicholas was so celebrated that no less than 25 other churches in his name were built in Istanbul and 45 in Rome, not to mention 40 in Iceland. In England about 400 churches were dedicated to Nicholas. Also in England there survive two important iconographical cycles of his life, on the font at Winchester cathedral and on an ivory crozier-head at the Victoria and Albert Museum, both from the 12th century. He was probably the most frequently represented saintly bishop for several centuries.
Perhaps the most popular result of his cult is the institution of Santa Claus. Based ultimately on Nicholas' patronage of children with its attendant custom in the Low Countries of giving them presents on his feast, it attained its present form in North America, where the Dutch Protestants of New Amsterdam united to it Nordic folkloric legends of a magician who both punished naughty children and rewarded good ones with presents.
The name Nicholas has been in use in England from Anglo-Saxon times and became very popular in the 12th century. lt gave rise to numerous names such as Colin, Nicolson. Nixon. Nicola. Nicolette, among others.
The feast day of Saint Nicholas has been celebrated throughout Europe since mediaeval times. The 6th of December is widely celebrated as the day of Santa Claus, whereas he is also expected on Christmas Eve, the 24th of December; as well as the New Years Eve by the children of the world. Saint Nicholas gradually made the metamorphosis into the red-suited character riding in a sleigh drawn by reindeer; so different yet with the same kindly heart as the ancient bishop of Myra. And it seems his name will live on as long as human kind exists.
The great Turkish mystic and poet Mevlana Celaleddin-i Rumi was born in Belh, in Afghanistan, on September 30, 1207 A.D. His father Bahaeddin Veled, who was known as Sultan-ul Ulema (the king of the learned men), was a renowned scholar who, however, raised the ire of the established academia of his times by critisizing the tenets of Greek philosophy. This and the start of the Mongol invasions made him decide to leave Belh. This was when Mevlana was only five years old. The family, which reached Anatolia after stopping in Yemen and Damascus, lived in Larende (Karaman) for seven years; and then, upon the invitation of the Selcuk Sultan Alaeddin Keykubat, Bahaeddin Veled settled in Konya in Central Anatolia in 1220. Meanwhile Mevlana married Gevher Hatun in Karaman; his son, Sultan Veled, was born in 1226 in the same town. Bahaeddin Veled, Mevlana's father, was a cultured scholar and mystic.
His knowledge, his discourses and his environment played a significant role in shaping and educating Mevlana, who advanced so rapidly that when his father died in 1230, he had already become a scholar and a teacher at the tender age of 23. Thus it would not bean exaggeration to say that Mevlana had learned the fundamentals of philosophy and mysticism from his father.
If a day won't come
when the monuments to institutionalized religion lie in ruin
.....then my beloved,
then we are really in trouble!
When Bahaeddin Veled died in 1230, a friend and a student of his, Burhaneddin Muhakkik Tirmizi, came to Konya and functioned as Mevlana's teacher for 9 years, before he relocated in Kayseri and died there in 1242.
Mevlana also was educated in the two major university centers of the time, Aleppo and Damascus; he was a well rounded scholar who had accumulated much theological and scientific knowledge. He had such command of Turkish, Persian, Arabic, Greek that he could write poetry in all four languages.
Mevlana, who first met Semseddin Tebrizi in 1244, so fell under his spell that the emergence of Mevlana as mystic poet is traced to the effect Semseddin Tebrizi had on him. Much, most of it speculative, has been said about the personality and identity of Semseddin Tebrizi, this wielder of such a powerful effect on the spirit of Mevlana, himself the strangest of personalities.
Everything seems to point to Semseddin Tebrizi's being a sufi master of such extraordinary knowledge and power that he could touch and light the torch in Mevlana's heart, in a sense transforming him. It was also Sems, who taught Mevlana the ritual dance-like practice callled Sem'a and the latter concieved it almost as a form of prayer or meditation. Sems, who must have reached rarefied spiritual heights, was a fearless man who would make no concessions to the prejudices, of the masses or the learned, either in behavior or in speech. So he made a great number of enemies and was not at all popular in Konya. Therefore he left Konya and went to Damascus in 1245; but returned to Konya when Mevlana implored him to, such was the older man's attachment to Sems. Two years later, in 1247, Sems dissappeared in a mysterious manner and was never heard of again.
Mevlana Celaleddin-i Rumi's masterpiece, his six volume Mesnevi consisting of 25700 couplets, is regarded as the most outstanding work of Persian-Islamic mysticism. It is not clear when Mevlana started writing the Mesnevi, though it is known that he started on the second volume of his magnum opus in 1264.
This masterpiece of Islam's mystic literature was written in the form of poetry which included philosophical, mystical, and spiritual messages and could in a sense be considered allegories which carry deep spiritual and religious meanings.
His second masterpiece, Divan-i Sems, though smaller in size is no less important from a literary and mystical standpoi
Turkey Cultural Tour
Zincirlidere Cd.Sisli-Istanbul/Turkey
• Tel: +90 532 3163653 • Tel: +90 212 2893252 • Fax: +90 212 2893252
• tours@turkeyculturaltour.com, • http://www.turkeyculturaltour.com
Turkey Cultural Tour
Zincirlidere Cd.Sisli-Istanbul/Turkey
• Tel: +90 532 3163653 • Tel: +90 212 2893252 • Fax: +90 212 2893252
• tours@turkeyculturaltour.com, • http://www.turkeyculturaltour.com