Today's zaman - News - 19 January 2009


Orhan Kemal’s ‘Cemile’ published in Egypt


Famous 20th century Turkish author Orhan Kemal’s 1952 novel “Cemile” has been published in Egypt, the İstanbul-based Orhan Kemal Culture Center announced on Friday.

Published in Arabic under the title “Gamila” by Afaq Books and translated by Abdülkadir Abdelli, the book will be launched this week at the Cairo Book Fair, scheduled for Jan. 22 to Feb. 2, the Anatolia news agency reported.

The book’s publishing in Egypt received funding from the Turkish Culture and Tourism Ministry as part of the ministry’s long-running literary translation subvention project called TEDA.

The novel, through the story of the poverty-stricken lives of Cemile, who works in a textile factory, and a factory clerk who wants to marry her, depicts in Kemal’s trademark realistic style the lives of factory workers and the hardships laborers encounter.

Orhan Kemal was the pen name of Mehmet Raşit Öğütçü, the novelist-playwright who lived from 1914 to 1970. “Cemile” is the third book in the author’s semi-autobiographical tetralogy, following his “Baba Evi” (My Father’s House, 1949) and “Avare Yılar” (Idle Years, 1950). The fourth book in the series is “Dünya Evi” (Marriage, 1960).

With the inclusion of the Arabic translation of “Cemile,” the number of Kemal’s novels translated into foreign languages has reached 10, Anatolia said. Recently, his memoir, “Nazım Hikmet’le 3.5 Yıl,” in which he chronicles his prison years with poet Hikmet through letters and diaries, has been published in English under the title “Orhan Kemal in Jail with Nazım Hikmet.”

19 January 2009, Monday