Humanities Institute: Resident Lecture Series

Humanities Institute: Resident Lecture Series

Nergis Ertürk, Associate Professor of Comparative Literature

Writing in Red: Literary and Revolutionary Encounters Across Turkey and the Soviet Union 

Writing in Red traces the literary and exilic itineraries of Turkish communist and former communist writers shaped by the history of Turkish and Soviet state relations of “cultural diplomacy,” the Comintern policies, and waves of arrests, detentions, and repressive crackdowns aimed at the Turkish Communist Party (TKP) during the first half of the twentieth century. Bringing together a wide range of writings, Writing in Red argues these works belong as much to Turkish literature as to a transnational Soviet republic of letters and a global archive of “world revolution.” I suggest that in devising a universalizable politics of language, revolutionary time, sexual ethics, and a humanist ontology, Turkish communist and ex-communist writers recorded a prehistory of contemporary dissent. 

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