Garip

Turkish literature’s most ‚peculiar‘ book of poems, ‚Garip,‘ is reprinted in a special edition

In 1941, Resimli Ay Matbaası, one of the legendary printing presses of the early republican era, published a book of poems entitled „Garip.“ The book’s title had different meanings (peculiar, strange, forlorn, poor), and the poems in the book seemed to embody many of those adjectives. In the fashion of Wordsworth and Coleridge’s „Lyrical Ballads,“ which marked the beginning of the English Romantic movement, „Garip“ began a literary movement through artistic collaboration. It featured works by Oktay Rifat, Melih Cevdet and Orhan Veli, three poets who had been high school friends and who had contributed to the same magazines (most significantly to „Varlık“) in previous years.

In „Millennium of Turkish literature,“ the eminent literature scholar Talat Sait Halman praised the group’s „Poetic Realism“ and wrote: „Their urge for literary upheaval was revolutionary, as expressed in a joint manifesto of 1941 that called for ‚altering the whole structure from the foundation up … dumping overboard everything that traditional literature has taught us.‘ The movement did away with rigid conventional forms and meters, reduced rhyme to a bare minimum and avoided stock metaphors, stentorian effects and specious embellishments. It championed the ideal of ‚the little man‘ as its hero, the ordinary citizen who asserted his political will with the advent of democracy.“ / Daily Sabah

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