Portrait of a Turkish Family - Irfan Orga

Guidebooks, histories, biographies, novels...any good books having to do with Turkey and things Turkish.

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aquamarina
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Portrait of a Turkish Family - Irfan Orga

Post by aquamarina » Tue Sep 06, 2005 1:37 pm

OK - this book was written a long time ago, but if you are going to visit Istanbul, in particular, take it along as a book to read rather than a book to guide. It is literally what the title says - a portrait of a Turkish family - from the early 20th century through WW1 and then the Turkish War of Independence, and then through military life afterwards. It is wonderfully evocative of a life past .. and speaks volumes about family culture, rich and poor, in the most fascinating city in the world. For me, it also put a lot of the cultural changes effected by the terrible practicalities of war, and the forming of the Turkish Republic, into perspective. I've lived in Turkey for years, read a lot of books on this part of the world, and for me, it was an enchanting, emotional, simply-expressed eye opener - even second time around. A definite must-read.

K


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Post by brissygirl » Sat Dec 10, 2005 10:29 am

I agree, it's a fantastic book - had me in floods of tears!

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Portrait of a Turkish Family

Post by turkeytom » Fri Dec 30, 2005 4:31 pm

Irfan Orga's book is one of the best for understanding the transition from the old, obsolete Ottoman Empire to the up-to-date Turkish Republic.

His later book "The Caravan Moves On: Three Weeks Among Turkish Nomads," is interesting and to some extent insightful, but not nearly so engaging nor important as "Portrait."

Tom Brosnahan

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Re: Portrait of a Turkish Family - Irfan Orga

Post by superrn » Wed Aug 13, 2008 12:14 am

I just finished this book and really enjoyed it. It was very easily read and the characters so lively. Thanks for suggesting it.

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Re: Portrait of a Turkish Family - Irfan Orga

Post by turkeytom » Wed Aug 13, 2008 1:00 am

Glad you liked it!

Tosun Saral
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Re: Portrait of a Turkish Family - Irfan Orga

Post by Tosun Saral » Wed Aug 13, 2008 11:16 am

Mates, books teach us what we dont know. But images show the reality. Pls visit my page about my family history for better understanding a good middle classTurkish family.

http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic. ... ish+family
Don't die before visiting Turkey

AT03
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Re: Portrait of a Turkish Family - Irfan Orga

Post by AT03 » Sat Nov 24, 2012 5:32 pm

I also really enjoyed Portrait of a Turkish Family. After living in Turkey for one year and spending most of my time with Turkish people, not expats, I actually had a lot of questions about the culture and traditions of Turkey and how they came to be, but my Turkish wasn't (and still isn't!) good enough to understand what the local people would tell me about their culture and traditions. This book actually gave me some of the answers I was looking for! It is one of the best books I've read about Turkey.

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Re: Portrait of a Turkish Family - Irfan Orga

Post by turkeytom » Sat Nov 24, 2012 5:58 pm

For me, İrfan Orga's book illuminated the transition from Ottoman society to Turkish Republican society. It shows the effect that the fledgling republican government's bold reform measures had on Turkish society, bringing an ossified political and social order into the 20th century and giving it bright prospects for the future.

The foundation laid during the period covered by Orga's memoir is what allowed Turkey to achieve its current level of political and economic success.

Tom Brosnahan


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