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Nâzim Hikmet: The Life and Times of Turkey's World Poet
An authoritative biography of Turkey's most important and most popular poet.Nâzim Hikmet (1902-1963), Turkey's best-loved poet and a commanding presence in its public life, lived through a turbulent era-the end of the Ottoman Empire, the rise of Communist Russia, and the birth of the Turkish Republic. Born into the Ottoman elite, Hikmet embraced Communist ideals and joined the revolutionary ranks at nineteen. Of passionate temperament, he lived his life full-tilt, deeply romantic in his loves and uncompromising in his politics-for which he spent more than a third of his life in prisons or in exile. His stirring free verse in simple words, prais-ing his country, his women, and the common man, was considered "subversive" and banned for decades. Today it is available in more than fifty lan-guages, and Hikmet is recognized worldwide as a major twentieth-century poet.
"[Hikmet] was one of the greatest writers of the last century . . . . It is time for the English-speaking world to discover this fantastic writer, and Konuk Blasing's new biography is a major step in this direction." - Words Without Borders "Blasing effectively illustrates how the course of Hikmet's life reflected his two passions: poetry and politics. ...making for fluid and engaging reading." - Publisher's Weekly "[Hikmet] shared with poetic modernists worldwide the determination to be understood by the common person. …In enlightening remarks on his work as much as the limning of his life, Blasing shows a great poet becoming a great hero." - Booklist - Starred review "Highly Recommended." - CHOICE "Konuk's treatment of the external circumstances of politics and society, and of Hikmet's own experience of prison, exile, and repression, is outstanding….The author also shines as a literary critic….[Hikmet's] art was not for art's sake, but for humanity's. With this biography, we readers, his beneficiaries, now have a clearer awareness of who our benefactor was." - Rain Taxi "This biography tells the dynamic story of Turkey's most acclaimed twentieth-century poet. His artistic growth is outlined along with his patriotism, his leftism, and his long-term rejection by the country he loved. Blasing is a prolific translator of Hikmet's work, and she incorporates elements of literary scholarship into her investigation of his life." - World Literature Today "(Hikmet) looms as a huge presence in Turkish public life. . . . a valuable biography of a vital twentieth-century figure." - The Times Literary Supplement "an enticing exploration . . . a core addition to any international biography collection focusing on thinkers and poets, highly recommended." - The Midwest Book Review
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November 07, 2013
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