Orhan Pamuk: Wikis


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Ferit Orhan Pamuk

Pamuk in New York City, 2009
Born 7 June 1952 (1952-06-07) (age 57)
Istanbul, Turkey
Occupation Novelist, Professor of Comparative Literature and Writing (Columbia University)
Nationality Turkey Turkish
Period 1974 – present
Literary movement Postmodern literature
Notable work(s) Karanlık ve Işık (Dark and Light; debut)

The White Castle
The Black Book
The New Life
My Name is Red
Istanbul: Memories of a City The Museum of Innocence

Notable award(s) Nobel Prize in Literature
Official website

Ferit Orhan Pamuk (born on 7 June 1952 in Istanbul) generally known simply as Orhan Pamuk, is a Turkish novelist. He is also the Robert Yik-Fong Tam Professor in the Humanities at Columbia University, where he teaches comparative literature and writing.[1]

One of Turkey's most prominent novelists,[2] his work has sold over seven million books in more than fifty languages,[3] making him the country's best-selling writer.[4] Pamuk is the recipient of numerous literary awards, including the Nobel Prize in Literature 2006[5]—the first Nobel Prize to be awarded to a Turkish citizen.



Pamuk was born in Istanbul in 1952 and grew up in a wealthy yet declining bourgeois family; an experience he describes in passing in his novels The Black Book and Cevdet Bey and His Sons, as well as more thoroughly in his personal memoir Istanbul. He was educated at Robert College secondary school in Istanbul and went on to study architecture at the Istanbul Technical University since it was related to his real dream career, painting.[6] He left the architecture school after three years, however, to become a full-time writer, and graduated from the Institute of Journalism at the University of Istanbul in 1976. From ages 22 to 30, Pamuk lived with his mother, writing his first novel and attempting to find a publisher. He is a Muslim, and he describes himself as a cultural one who associates the historical and cultural identification with the religion.[7]

On 1 March 1982, Pamuk married Aylin Türegün, a historian.[8] From 1985 to 1988, while his wife was a graduate student at Columbia University, Pamuk assumed the position of visiting scholar there, using the time to conduct research and write his novel The Black Book in the university's Butler Library. This period also included a visiting fellowship at the University of Iowa.

Pamuk returned to Istanbul, a city to which he is strongly attached.[9] He and his wife had a daughter named Rüya born in 1991, whose name means "dream" in Turkish. In 2001, he and Aylin were divorced.

In 2006, Pamuk returned to the US to take up a position as a visiting professor at Columbia. Pamuk is currently a Fellow with Columbia's Committee on Global Thought and holds an appointment in Columbia's Middle East and Asian Languages and Cultures department and at its School of the Arts.

In May 2007, Pamuk was among the jury members at the Cannes Film Festival headed by British director Stephen Frears. In the 2007-2008 academic year Pamuk returned to Columbia once again to jointly teach comparative literature classes with Andreas Huyssen and David Damrosch.

Pamuk was also a writer-in-residence at Bard College. He completed his latest novel, Masumiyet Müzesi (The Museum of Innocence) in the summer of 2008 and the book was released in Turkey on the 29th of August. The German translation will appear shortly before the 2008 Frankfurt Book Fair where Pamuk was planning to hold an actual Museum of Innocence consisting of everyday odds and ends the writer has amassed (the exhibition will instead occur in an Istanbul house purchased by Pamuk).[10] Plans for an English translation have not been made public, but Erdağ Göknar received a 2004 NEA grant for the project.[11] His elder brother Şevket Pamuk - who sometimes appears as a fictional character in Orhan Pamuk's work — is a professor of economics, internationally recognized for his work in history of economics of the Ottoman Empire, working at Bogazici University in Istanbul. In autumn 2009, Pamuk will be Harvard's Charles Eliot Norton Lecturer, delivering a series of lectures entitled "The Naive and Sentimental Novelist".

In January 2010, Pamuk announced that he was in a relationship with the Man Booker Prize winning novelist, Kiran Desai.[12]


Pamuk while writing.
By category
Epic tradition

Dede Korkut · Köroğlu

Folk tradition

Folk literature

Ottoman era

Poetry · Prose

Republican era

Poetry · Prose

Orhan Pamuk started writing regularly in 1974.[13] His first novel, Karanlık ve Işık (Darkness and Light) was a co-winner of the 1979 Milliyet Press Novel Contest (Mehmet Eroğlu (* tr) was the other winner). This novel was published with the title Cevdet Bey ve Oğulları (Mr. Cevdet and His Sons) in 1982, and won the Orhan Kemal Novel Prize in 1983. It tells the story of three generations of a wealthy Istanbul family living in Nişantaşı, the district of Istanbul where Pamuk grew up.

Pamuk won a number of critical prizes for his early work, including the 1984 Madarali Novel Prize for his second novel Sessiz Ev (The Silent House) and the 1991 Prix de la Découverte Européenne for the French translation of this novel. His historical novel Beyaz Kale (The White Castle), published in Turkish in 1985, won the 1990 Independent Award for Foreign Fiction and extended his reputation abroad. The New York Times Book Review stated, "A new star has risen in the east—Orhan Pamuk." He started experimenting with postmodern techniques in his novels, a change from the strict naturalism of his early works.

Popular success took a bit longer to come to Pamuk, but his 1990 novel Kara Kitap (The Black Book) became one of the most controversial and popular readings in Turkish literature, due to its complexity and richness. In 1992, he wrote the screenplay for the movie Gizli Yüz (Secret Face), based on Kara Kitap and directed by a prominent Turkish director, Ömer Kavur. Pamuk's fourth novel Yeni Hayat (New Life) caused a sensation in Turkey upon its 1995 publication and became the fastest-selling book in Turkish history. By this time, Pamuk had also become a high-profile figure in Turkey, due to his support for Kurdish political rights. In 1995, Pamuk was among a group of authors tried for writing essays that criticized Turkey's treatment of the Kurds. In 1999, Pamuk published his book of essays Öteki Renkler (Other Colors).

Pamuk's international reputation continued to increase when he published Benim Adım Kırmızı (My Name is Red) in 2000. The novel blends mystery, romance, and philosophical puzzles in a setting of 16th century Istanbul. It opens a window into the reign of Ottoman Sultan Murat III in nine snowy winter days of 1591, inviting the reader to experience the tension between East and West from a breathlessly urgent perspective. My Name Is Red has been translated into 24 languages and won international literature's most lucrative prize, the IMPAC Dublin Award in 2003.

Asked the question "What impact did winning the IMPAC award (currently $127,000) have on your life and your work?," Pamuk replied:

Nothing changed in my life since I work all the time. I've spent 30 years writing fiction. For the first 10 years, I worried about money and no one asked how much money I made. The second decade I spent money and no one was asking about that. And I've spent the last 10 years with everyone expecting to hear how I spend the money, which I will not do. [14]

Pamuk's next novel was Kar in 2002 (English translation, Snow, 2004), which takes place in the border city of Kars and explores the conflict between Islamism and Westernism in modern Turkey. The New York Times listed Snow as one of its Ten Best Books of 2004. He also published a memoir/travelogue İstanbul—Hatıralar ve Şehir in 2003 (English version, Istanbul—Memories and the City, 2005). Pamuk's Other Colours - a collection of non-fiction and a story — was published in the UK in September 2007. His next novel is titled The Museum of Innocence.

Asked how personal his book Istanbul: Memories and the City was, Pamuk replied:

I thought I would write Memories and the City in six months, but it took me one year to complete. And I was working twelve hours a day, just reading and working. My life, because of so many things, was in a crisis; I don’t want to go into those details: divorce, father dying, professional problems, problems with this, problems with that, everything was bad. I thought if I were to be weak I would have a depression. But every day I would wake up and have a cold shower and sit down and remember and write, always paying attention to the beauty of the book. Honestly, I may have hurt my mother, my family. My father was dead, but my mother is still alive. But I can’t care about that; I must care about the beauty of the book.[15]

In 2005 Orhan Pamuk received the 25,000 Peace Prize of the German Book Trade for his literary work, in which "Europe and Islamic Turkey find a place for one another." The award presentation was held at Paul's Church, Frankfurt.

Pamuk's books are characterized by a confusion or loss of identity brought on in part by the conflict between Western and Eastern values. They are often disturbing or unsettling, but include complex, intriguing plots and characters of great depth. His works are also redolent with discussion of and fascination with the creative arts, such as literature and painting. Pamuk's work often touches on the deep-rooted tensions between East and West and tradition and modernism/secularism.

Nobel Prize

On 12 October 2006, the Swedish Academy announced that Orhan Pamuk had been awarded the 2006 Nobel Prize in literature, confounding pundits and oddsmakers who had made Syrian poet Ali Ahmad Said, known as Adonis, a favorite.[16] In its citation, the Academy said: "In the quest for the melancholic soul of his native city, [Pamuk] has discovered new symbols for the clash and interlacing of cultures."[5] Orhan Pamuk held his Nobel Lecture 7 December 2006, at the Swedish Academy, Stockholm. The lecture was entitled "Babamın Bavulu" (My Father's Suitcase)[17] and was given in Turkish. In the lecture he viewed the relations between Eastern and Western Civilizations in an allegorical upper text which covers his relationship with his father.

What literature needs most to tell and investigate today are humanity's basic fears: the fear of being left outside, and the fear of counting for nothing, and the feelings of worthlessness that come with such fears; the collective humiliations, vulnerabilities, slights, grievances, sensitivities, and imagined insults, and the nationalist boasts and inflations that are their next of kin ... Whenever I am confronted by such sentiments, and by the irrational, overstated language in which they are usually expressed, I know they touch on a darkness inside me. We have often witnessed peoples, societies and nations outside the Western world–and I can identify with them easily–succumbing to fears that sometimes lead them to commit stupidities, all because of their fears of humiliation and their sensitivities. I also know that in the West–a world with which I can identify with the same ease–nations and peoples taking an excessive pride in their wealth, and in their having brought us the Renaissance, the Enlightenment, and Modernism, have, from time to time, succumbed to a self-satisfaction that is almost as stupid.
—Orhan Pamuk, Nobel Lecture (translation by Maureen Freely)

Many Turkish people believe that his being awarded the Nobel Prize was politically motivated.[18]

Plagiarism Accusation

A group of writers claim that some parts of Orhan Pamuk's works are exceedingly influenced by other works that belong to other writers; especially certain chapters in some works are almost totally quoted from other books. Murat Bardakçı, one of the writers in a national Turkish newspaper (Hurriyet), accused Orhan Pamuk for counterfeiting and plagiarism in the 26 May 2002 dated edition of mentioned newspaper with proofs. According to Bardakci, Orhan Pamuk's novel "My Name is Red" is a copy of American writer Norman Mailer's "Ancient Evenings" in terms of the story and the way of expression. Other accusations claim that Orhan Pamuk's novel "The White Castle" contains exact paragraphs from Fuad Carim's "Kanuni Devrinde İstanbul" (Istanbul in the Time of the Kanuni) novel.[19] Orhan Pamuk responded to these accusations at the Boston Book Festival saying, "They are not true."

Criminal case


In 2005, after Pamuk made a statement regarding the mass killings of Armenians and Kurds in the Ottoman Empire, a criminal case was opened against the author based on a complaint filed by ultra-nationalist lawyer Kemal Kerinçsiz.[20] The charges were dropped on 22 January 2006. Rallies were held to burn his books.[21] Pamuk has subsequently stated his intent was to draw attention to freedom of expression issues.


Pamuk's statements

The criminal charges against Pamuk resulted from remarks he made during an interview in February 2005 with the Swiss publication Das Magazin, a weekly supplement to a number of Swiss daily newspapers: the Tages-Anzeiger, the Basler Zeitung, the Berner Zeitung and the Solothurner Tagblatt. In the interview, Pamuk stated, "Thirty thousand Kurds have been killed here, and a million Armenians. And almost nobody dares to mention that. So I do."[22] Turkish historians were divided over the remarks.[23]

Pamuk stated that he was consequently subjected to a hate campaign that forced him to flee the country.[24] He returned later in 2005, however, to face the charges against him. In an interview with BBC News, he said that he wanted to defend freedom of speech, which was Turkey's only hope for coming to terms with its history: "What happened to the Ottoman Armenians in 1915 was a major thing that was hidden from the Turkish nation; it was a taboo. But we have to be able to talk about the past."[24]


In June 2005, Turkey introduced a new penal code including Article 301, which states: "A person who, being a Turk, explicitly insults the Republic or Turkish Grand National Assembly, shall be punishable by imprisonment of between six months to three years." Pamuk was retroactively charged with violating this law in the interview he had given four months earlier. In October, after the prosecution had begun, Pamuk reiterated his views in a speech given during an award ceremony in Germany: "I repeat, I said loud and clear that one million Armenians and 30,000 Kurds were killed in Turkey."[25]

Because Pamuk was charged under an ex post facto law, Turkish law required that his prosecution be approved by the Ministry of Justice. A few minutes after Pamuk's trial started on 16 December, the judge found that this approval had not yet been received and suspended the proceedings. In an interview published in the Akşam newspaper the same day, Justice Minister Cemil Çiçek said he had not yet received Pamuk's file but would study it thoroughly once it came.[26]

On 29 December 2005, Turkish state prosecutors dropped the charge that Pamuk insulted Turkey's armed forces, although the charge of "insulting Turkishness" remained.[27]

International reaction

The charges against Pamuk caused an international outcry and led to questions in some circles about Turkey's proposed entry into the European Union. On 30 November, the European Parliament announced that it would send a delegation of five MEPs, led by Camiel Eurlings, to observe the trial.[28] EU Enlargement Commissioner Olli Rehn subsequently stated that the Pamuk case would be a "litmus test" of Turkey's commitment to the EU's membership criteria.

On 1 December, Amnesty International released a statement calling for Article 301 to be repealed and for Pamuk and six other people awaiting trial under the act to be freed.[29] PEN American Center also denounced the charges against Pamuk, stating: "PEN finds it extraordinary that a state that has ratified both the United Nations International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and the European Convention on Human Rights, both of which see freedom of expression as central, should have a Penal Code that includes a clause that is so clearly contrary to these very same principles."[30]

On 13 December, eight world-renowned authors—José Saramago, Gabriel García Márquez, Günter Grass, Umberto Eco, Carlos Fuentes, Juan Goytisolo, John Updike and Mario Vargas Llosa—issued a joint statement supporting Pamuk and decrying the charges against him as a violation of human rights.[31]

Charges dropped

On 22 January 2006, the Justice Ministry refused to issue an approval of the prosecution, saying that they had no authority to open a case against Pamuk under the new penal code.[32] With the trial in the local court, it was ruled the next day that the case could not continue without Justice Ministry approval.[33] Pamuk's lawyer, Haluk İnanıcı, subsequently confirmed that charges had been dropped.

The announcement occurred in a week when the EU was scheduled to begin a review of the Turkish justice system.[33]


EU enlargement commissioner Olli Rehn welcomed the dropping of charges, saying "This is obviously good news for Mr. Pamuk, but it's also good news for freedom of expression in Turkey".[34] However, some EU representatives expressed disappointment that the justice ministry had rejected the prosecution on a technicality rather than on principle. An Ankara-based EU diplomat reportedly said, "It is good the case has apparently been dropped, but the justice ministry never took a clear position or gave any sign of trying to defend Pamuk".[35] Meanwhile, the lawyer who had led the effort to try Pamuk, Kemal Kerinçsiz, said he would appeal the decision, saying, "Orhan Pamuk must be punished for insulting Turkey and Turkishness, it is a grave crime and it should not be left unpunished."[34]

In 2006, the magazine Time listed Orhan Pamuk in the cover article "TIME 100: The People Who Shape Our World", in the category "Heroes & Pioneers", for speaking up.[36]

In April 2006, on the BBC's Hardtalk program, Pamuk stated that his remarks regarding the Armenian massacres were meant to draw attention to freedom of expression issues in Turkey rather than to the massacres themselves.[37]

On 19-20 December 2006 a symposium on Orhan Pamuk and His Work was held at Sabancı University, Istanbul. Pamuk himself gave the closing address.

In January 2008, 13 ultranationalists, including Kemal Kerinçsiz, were arrested by Turkish authorities for participating in a Turkish nationalist underground organisation, named Ergenekon, allegedly conspiring to assassinate political figures, including several Christian missionaries and Armenian intellectual Hrant Dink.[38] Several reports suggest that Orhan Pamuk was among the figures this group plotted to kill.[39][40] The police informed Pamuk about the assassination plans eight months before the Ergenekon investigation.[41]

Bibliography in English

  • The White Castle, translated by Victoria Holbrook, Manchester (UK): Carcanet Press Limited, 1990;, 1991; New York: George Braziller, 1991 [original title: Beyaz Kale]
  • The Black Book, translated by Güneli Gün, New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1994 [original title: Kara Kitap]. (A new translation by Maureen Freely was published in 2006)
  • The New Life, translated by Güneli Gün, New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1997 [original title: Yeni Hayat]
  • My Name is Red, translated by Erdağ M. Göknar, New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2001 [original title: Benim Adım Kırmızı].
  • Snow, translated by Maureen Freely, New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2004 [original title: Kar]
  • Istanbul: Memories of a City‎, translated by Maureen Freely, New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2005 [original title: İstanbul: Hatıralar ve Şehir]
  • Other Colors: Essays and a Story, translated by Maureen Freely, New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2007 [original title: Öteki Renkler][42]
  • The Museum of Innocence, translated by Maureen Freely, New York: Alfred A. Knopf, was released on Oct 20, 2009 [original title: Masumiyet Müzesi]


In a review of Snow in The Atlantic, Christopher Hitchens complained that "from reading Snow one might easily conclude that all the Armenians of Anatolia had decided for some reason to pick up and depart en masse, leaving their ancestral properties for tourists to gawk at."[43]

However, John Updike, reviewing the same book in The New Yorker, wrote: "To produce a major work so frankly troubled and provocatively bemused and, against the grain of the author’s usual antiquarian bent, entirely contemporary in its setting and subjects, took the courage that art sometimes visits upon even its most detached practitioners."[44]

Bibliography in Turkish

  • Cevdet Bey ve Oğulları (Cevdet Bey and His Sons), novel, Istanbul: Karacan Yayınları, 1982
  • Sessiz Ev (The Silent House) , novel, Istanbul: Can Yayınları, 1983
  • Beyaz Kale (The White Castle), novel, Istanbul: Can Yayınları, 1985
  • Kara Kitap (The Black Book), novel, Istanbul: Can Yayınları, 1990
  • Gizli Yüz (Secret Face), screenplay, Istanbul: Can Yayınları, 1992
  • Yeni Hayat (The New Life), novel, Istanbul: İletişim Yayınları, 1995
  • Benim Adım Kırmızı (My Name is Red), novel, Istanbul: İletişim Yayınları, 1998
  • Öteki Renkler (Other Colors), essays, Istanbul: İletişim Yayınları, 1999
  • Kar (Snow), novel, Istanbul: İletişim Yayınları, 2002
  • İstanbul: Hatıralar ve Şehir (Istanbul: Memories and the City), memoirs, Istanbul: Yapı Kredi Yayınları, 2003
  • Masumiyet Müzesi (The Museum of Innocence), novel, Istanbul: İletişim Yayınları, 2008


Doctorates, honoris causa


  1. ^ "Nobel in literature goes to Pamuk". MSNBC. Associated Press. 2006-10-13. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/15232786/?GT1=8618. Retrieved 2008-07-29. 
  2. ^ Kinzer, Stephen (1998-12-15). "A Novelist Sees Dishonor in an Honor From the State". New York Times. http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9F04E1D6173DF936A25751C1A96E958260&sec=&spon=&partner=permalink&exprod=permalink. Retrieved 2008-08-30. 
  3. ^ "Masumiyet Müzesi açıldı". Radikal. Anadolu Agency. 2008-08-30. http://www.radikal.com.tr/Default.aspx?aType=Detay&ArticleID=896089&Date=30.08.2008&CategoryID=82. Retrieved 2008-08-30. "Romanları dünyada 58 dile çevrilen ve 7 milyondan fazla satan Orhan Pamuk..." 
  4. ^ "En çok kazanan yazar kim?" (in Turkish). Sabah. 2008-09-01. http://arsiv.sabah.com.tr/2008/09/01//haber,C462F3CF81E14986B64C5BE92C0111BB.html. Retrieved 2008-09-02. 
  5. ^ a b "The Nobel Prize in Literature 2006". http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/literature/laureates/2006/. Retrieved 2006-10-12. 
  6. ^ Jaggi, Maya. "Between two worlds," Guardian Unlimited. Saturday 8 December 2007.
  7. ^ SPIEGEL ONLINE - Orhan Pamuk and the Turkish Paradox
  8. ^ "Pegasos", Finnish literary Web site.
  9. ^ "Orhan Pamuk: Avrupa'ya tam entegrasyon kaçınılmaz". Zaman. 2008-09-03. http://zaman.com.tr/haber.do?haberno=733760&title=orhan-pamuk-avrupaya-tam-entegrasyon-kacinilmaz. Retrieved 2008-09-03. "...Pamuk, ölüm tehditleri ve kendisine karşı açılan davalara rağmen İstanbul'dan başka bir yerde yaşamayı düşünemediğini kaydetti." 
  10. ^ Allen, Jennifer (2008-06-30). "ORHAN PAMUK CANCELS “MUSEUM OF INNOCENCE”". International News Digest. Artforum International Magazine Inc. http://www.artforum.com/news/mode=international&week=200827. Retrieved 2008-08-23. 
  11. ^ "New Pamuk?". Literary Saloon. 2007-07-24. http://www.complete-review.com/saloon/archive/200707c.htm#zk5. Retrieved 2008-08-23. 
  12. ^ 'Pamuk: It's no secret, Kiran is my girlfriend', Times of India, 1 February 2010.
  13. ^ Peter Badge, Nikolaus Turner, Anders Barany, Chris Richmond, Wim Wenders. Nobel Faces. Wiley. p. 170. ISBN 9783527406784. http://books.google.com/books?id=SRD2K80JYpYC&pg=PA170&dq=orhan+pamuk+1974&ei=cb-8SID5CoGSyATJ04z3Bw&client=firefox-a&sig=ACfU3U0yCijm5vLXGB9r5WKksAR07LGwHg. 
  14. ^ Lyall, Sarah Turkish novelist given Nobel literature prize, New York Times, 12 October 2006.
  15. ^ Stocke, Joy E. The Melancholy Life of Orhan Pamuk, Wild River Review, 19 November 2007.
  16. ^ Lea, Richard (2006-10-12). "Orhan Pamuk wins Nobel prize". Guardian. http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2006/oct/12/nobelprize.awardsandprizes. Retrieved 2008-09-02. "At 7-1, 54-year-old Pamuk was third favourite with bookmakers Ladbrokes in the run up to the prize, following in the wake of perennial Nobel contender Ali Ahmad Said, the Syrian poet better known as Adonis (3-1) and the American author Joyce Carol Oates (6-1)." 
  17. ^ "My Father's Suitcase" - Orhan Pamuk's Nobel Lecture, 2006 as translated from the Turkish by Maureen Freely. Also available from official Nobel Prize site
  18. ^ Rainsford, Sarah (2006-10-13). "Pride and suspicion over Pamuk prize". BBC News. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/entertainment/6049874.stm. Retrieved 2008-12-04. 
  19. ^ "Hürriyet - Murat BARDAKÇI-Reşad Ekrem ‘cemal áşığı’ idi ama intihalci değildi!". Hurarsiv.hurriyet.com.tr. http://hurarsiv.hurriyet.com.tr/goster/haber.aspx?id=74394&yazarid=28. Retrieved 2010-01-28. 
  20. ^ Daren Butler and Ercan Ersoy, "Kerinçsiz puts patriotism before free speech, EU". Reuters via Turkish Daily News, 21 July 2006.
  21. ^ Extremists Threaten to Burn Pamuk's Books - IFEX
  22. ^ Peuwsen, Peer (2005-02-05). "Der meistgehasste Türke" (in German). Das Magazin (Tages-Anzeiger). http://www.tagesanzeiger.ch/dyn/news/kultur/560264.html. "Man hat hier 30 000 Kurden umgebracht. Und eine Million Armenier. Und fast niemand traut sich, das zu erwähnen. Also mache ich es." 
  23. ^ Urus, Alper (2005-02-10). "1 milyon Ermeni'yi ve 30 bin Kürt'ü kestik mi?" (in Turkish). Vatan. http://w9.gazetevatan.com/haberdetay.asp?detay=0&tarih=10.02.2005&Newsid=46650&Categoryid=1. Retrieved 2008-09-02. 
  24. ^ a b Rainsford, Sarah (2005-12-14). "Author's trial set to test Turkey". BBC News. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/4527318.stm. Retrieved 2008-09-02. 
  25. ^ Writer repeats Turk deaths claim, BBC News.
  26. ^ Turk writer's insult trial halted, BBC News.
  27. ^ Partial reprieve for Turk writer, BBC News.
  28. ^ Camiel Eurlings MEP leads delegation to observe trial of Orhan Pamuk, EEP-ED.
  29. ^ Article 301, Amnesty International.
  30. ^ PEN Protests Charges Against Turkish Author Orhan Pamuk, PEN American Center.
  31. ^ Literary world backs Pamuk, NTV-MSNBC, 13 December 2005.
  32. ^ Aydin, Murat (2006-01-23). "Pamuk Case Dropped as Minister Says 'I have no Authorization for Permission'". Today's Zaman. http://www.todayszaman.com/tz-web/detaylar.do?load=detay&link=28943. Retrieved 2008-07-29. 
  33. ^ a b Hacaoglu, Selcan (2006-01-23). "Turkish court drops charges against novelist". Associated Press. The Independent. http://news.independent.co.uk/europe/article340466.ece. Retrieved 2008-07-30. 
  34. ^ a b Knight, Sam (2006-01-23). "Europe tells Turkey to drop all free speech cases". Times Online. http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/europe/article718099.ece. Retrieved 2008-07-29. 
  35. ^ Ersoy, Ercan (2006-01-22). "Turkey drops case against writer Pamuk". Reuters (Swissinfo). http://www.swissinfo.org/eng/index.html?siteSect=143&sid=6403672&cKey=1137959434000. Retrieved 2008-07-29. 
  36. ^ Chua-Eoan, Howard. Orhan Pamuk:Teller of the Awful Truth, Time. 25 April 2006, (in print in the 8 May 2006 issue.)
  37. ^ Hardtalk in Turkey: Orhan Pamuk, Hardtalk, BBC News.
  38. ^ Tavernise, Sabrina. 13 Arrested in Push to Stifle Turkish Ultranationalists Suspected in Political Killings. New York Times. 28 January 2008.
  39. ^ Plot to kill Orhan Pamuk foiled. The Times of India. 25 January 2008.
  40. ^ Lea, Richard. 'Plot to kill' Nobel laureate. The Guardian. 28 January 2008.
  41. ^ "Neonationalist organizations set to protest Ergenekon trial". Today's Zaman. 2008-10-14. http://www.todayszaman.com/tz-web/detaylar.do?load=detay&link=155858&bolum=100. Retrieved 2008-10-22. "The police informed me about the details of an Ergenekon plot to kill me about eight months before the Ergenekon investigation fully started. The government assigned me a bodyguard. Now some papers understate this organization. I don't like talking about politics, but this is a reality. This organization exists. I have seen their plans; I have listened to their phone conversations about killing me." 
  42. ^ de Bellaigue, Christopher (19 March 2008). "Orhan Pamuk and the idea of the novelist," Times Literary Supplement.
  43. ^ Hitchens, Christopher. Mind the Gap, Atlantic Monthly. October 2004.
  44. ^ Updike, John. "Anatolian Arabesques: A modernist novel of contemporary Turkey," The New Yorker, 30 August 2004.
  45. ^ Washington University in St. Louis (2006-11-13). "2006 Nobel Prize-winner Orhan Pamuk to receive Washington University's inaugural Distinguished Humanist Medal Nov. 27". Press release. http://news-info.wustl.edu/news/page/normal/8229.html. Retrieved 2008-09-03. 
  46. ^ Freie Universität Berlin Pressemitteilung (German)
  47. ^ "Tilburg University honours Michael Ignatieff, Orhan Pamuk and Robert Sternberg with doctorates". Netherlands organization for international cooperation in higher education. 2007-11-12. http://www.nuffic.nl/home/news-events/news-archive/news-archive-2007/november/tilburg-university-honours-michael-ignatieff-orhan-pamuk-and-robert-sternberg-with-doctorates. Retrieved 2008-08-23. 
  48. ^ "Orhan Pamuk: Heyecandan uyuyamadım". Sabah daily. 2007-05-14. http://arsiv.sabah.com.tr/2007/05/14/haber,B0B05061460343F48E72AE6C4A463D76.html. Retrieved 2009-10-08. 
  49. ^ Office of Communications (2007-11-01). "Turkish Author Receives Honorary Degree". Georgetown University. http://explore.georgetown.edu/news/?ID=28831. Retrieved 2008-08-23. 
  50. ^ "Turning Novel Ideas Into Inhabitable Worlds," Washington Post. Tuesday, 30 October 2007.

External links


Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote

Ferit Orhan Pamuk (born June 7, 1952) is a Turkish novellist in the post-modern style. He became one of Turkey's most prominent novellists and was made a cause célèbre in 2005 when he was prosecuted for claiming that the mass killings of Armenians from 1915 were a result of genocide. He was awarded the 2006 Nobel Prize for Literature.


  • The question we writers are asked most often, the favorite question, is: Why do you write? I write because I have an innate need to write. I write because I can’t do normal work as other people do. I write because I want to read books like the ones I write. I write because I am angry at everyone. I write because I love sitting in a room all day writing. I write because I can partake of real life only by changing it. I write because I want others, the whole world, to know what sort of life we lived, and continue to live, in Istanbul, in Turkey. I write because I love the smell of paper, pen, and ink. I write because I believe in literature, in the art of the novel, more than I believe in anything else. I write because it is a habit, a passion. I write because I am afraid of being forgotten. I write because I like the glory and interest that writing brings. I write to be alone. Perhaps I write because I hope to understand why I am so very, very angry at everyone. I write because I like to be read. I write because once I have begun a novel, an essay, a page I want to finish it. I write because everyone expects me to write. I write because I have a childish belief in the immortality of libraries, and in the way my books sit on the shelf. I write because it is exciting to turn all life’s beauties and riches into words. I write not to tell a story but to compose a story. I write because I wish to escape from the foreboding that there is a place I must go but—as in a dream—can’t quite get to. I write because I have never managed to be happy. I write to be happy.
    • "My Father's Suitcase", Nobel Prize for Literature lecture, December 7, 2006 [1]


  1. Nobel Lecture @Nobelprize.org

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Simple English

Ferit Orhan Pamuk
Occupation Novelist
Nationality Turkish
Writing period 1974-present
Literary movement post-modern literature

Ferit Orhan Pamuk (born June 7, 1952) a famous Nobel Prize-winning Turkish author. Pamuk is a post-modernist writer. He has won many writing awards around the world. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature on October 12 2006, which made him the first Turkish person to win the Nobel Prize.

In 2005, he faced criminal charges because of comments he made in an interview. In the interview, Pamuk said, "Thirty thousand Kurds, and a million Armenians were killed in these lands and nobody dares to talk about it." Pamuk faced a hate campaign and he had to flee the country. The charges were dropped in early 2006.


Bibliography in English

  • The White Castle, translated by Victoria Holbrook, Manchester (UK): Carcanet Press Limited, 1990;, 1991; New York: George Braziller, 1991 [original title: Beyaz Kale]
  • The Black Book, translated by Güneli Gün, New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1994 [original title: Kara Kitap]. A new translation by Maureen Freely was published in 2006
  • The New Life, translated by Güneli Gün, New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1997 [original title: Yeni Hayat]
  • My Name is Red, translated by Erdağ M. Göknar, New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2001 [original title: Benim Adım Kırmızı].
  • Snow, translated by Maureen Freely, New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2004 [original title: Kar]
  • Istanbul: Memories and the City, translated by Maureen Freely, New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2005 [original title: İstanbul: Hatıralar ve Şehir]

Bibliography in Turkish

  • Cevdet Bey ve Oğulları (Cevdet Bey and His Sons), novel, Istanbul: Karacan Yayınları, 1982
  • Sessiz Ev (The Silent House) , novel, Istanbul: Can Yayınları, 1983
  • Beyaz Kale (The White Castle), novel, Istanbul: Can Yayınları, 1985
  • Kara Kitap (The Black Book), novel, Istanbul: Can Yayınları, 1990
  • Gizli Yuz (Secret Face), screenplay, Istanbul: Can Yayınları, 1992 [1]
  • Yeni Hayat (The New Life), novel, Istanbul: İletişim Yayınları, 1995
  • Benim Adım Kırmızı (My Name is Red), novel, Istanbul: İletişim Yayınları, 1998
  • Öteki Renkler (The Other Colors), essays, Istanbul: İletişim Yayınları, 1999
  • Kar (Snow), novel, Istanbul: İletişim Yayınları, 2002
  • İstanbul: Hatıralar ve Şehir (Istanbul: Memories and the City), memoirs, Istanbul: Yapı Kredi Yayınları, 2003


  • 1979 Milliyet Press Novel Contest Award (Turkey) for his novel Karanlık ve Işık (co-winner)
  • 1983 Orhan Kemal Novel Prize (Turkey) for his novel Cevdet Bey ve Oğulları
  • 1984 Madarali Novel Prize (Turkey) for his novel Sessiz Ev
  • 1990 Independent Foreign Fiction Prize (United Kingdom) for his novel Beyaz Kale
  • 1991 Prix de la Découverte Européenne (France) for the French edition of Sessiz Ev : La Maison de Silence
  • 1995 Prix France Culture (France) for his novel Kara Kitap : Le Livre Noir
  • 2002 Prix du Meilleur Livre Etranger (France) for his novel My Name Is Red : Mon Nom est Rouge
  • 2002 Premio Grinzane Cavour (Italy) for his novel My Name Is Red
  • 2003 International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award (Ireland) for his novel My Name Is Red
  • 2005 Peace Prize of the German Book Trade (Germany)
  • 2005 Prix Medicis Etranger (France) for his novel Snow : La Neige
  • 2006 Nobel Prize in Literature (Sweden)
  • 2006 Washington University's Distinguished Humanist Award (United States)[1]

Honorary Doctorate

  • Free University of Berlin, Department of Philosophy and Humanities - May 4, 2007[2]
  • 2007 Boğaziçi University, Department of Western Languages and Literatures May 14, 2007


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