Istanbul is a shimmering evocation, by turns intimate and panoramic, of one of the world's great cities, by its foremost writer. Orhan Pamuk, winner of the Nobel Prize in 2006, was born in Istanbul, in the family apartment building where his mother first held him in her arms. His portrait of his city is thus also a self-portrait, refracted by ...
Istanbul is a shimmering evocation, by turns intimate and panoramic, of one of the world's great cities, by its foremost writer. Orhan Pamuk, winner of the Nobel Prize in 2006, was born in Istanbul, in the family apartment building where his mother first held him in her arms. His portrait of his city is thus also a self-portrait, refracted by memory and the melancholy-or huzun- that all Istanbullus share: the sadness that comes of living amid the ruins of a lost Ottoman Empire. As he companionably guides us across the Bosphorus, through Istanbul's historical monuments and lost paradises, its dilapidated Ottoman villas, back streets and waterways, he also introduces us to the city's writers, artists and murderers. Like the Dublin of Joyce and Jan Morris' Venice, Pamuk's Istanbul is a triumphant encounter of place and sensibility, beautifully written and immensely moving.
Good. 2006-Paperback-Used-Good--Shows some shelf-wear. May contain old price stickers or their residue, inscriptions or dedications from previous owners in first few pages and remainder marks.-. -Hall Street Books proudly ships from Brooklyn, NY. All orders are processed and shipped within 24 business hours, Mon-Fri. Expedited shipping and tracking available within the US. Hall Street's No-Worry guarantee lets you buy with confidence!
Acceptable. 2006-Paperback-Used-Acceptable---Shows substantial shelf-wear which may include some chips and tears on dust jacket (if present) and some yellowing of the pages. May contain old price stickers or their residue, inscriptions or dedications from previous owners in first few pages and remainder marks. -Hall Street Books proudly ships from Brooklyn, NY. All orders are processed and shipped within 24 business hours, Mon-Fri. Expedited shipping and tracking available within the US. Hall Street's No-Worry guarantee lets you buy with confidence!
Fair. Good copy for reading, may have heavy page wear with writing textual notes highlighting or be an heavily used ex library copy with library markings, stickers or stamps. Dust jacket or accessories may not be included.
Acceptable. A book with obvious wear. May have some damage to the cover or binding but integrity is still intact. There might be writing in the margins, possibly underlining and highlighting of text, but no missing pages or anything that would compromise the legibility or understanding of the text.
Good. Books have varying amounts of wear and highlighting. Usually ships within 24 hours in quality packaging. Satisfaction guaranteed. This item may not include any CDs, Infotracs, Access cards or other supplementary material.
Good. A copy that has been read, but remains in clean condition. All pages are intact, and the cover is intact (including dust cover, if applicable). The spine and cover may show signs of wear. Pages can include limited notes and highlighting, and the copy can This item was a donation to Goodwill of Greater Washington. Thanks for your order from Goodwill of Greater Washington.
Acceptable. A readable copy. All pages are intact, and the cover is intact (However the dust cover may be missing). Pages can include considerable notes--in pen or highlighter--but the notes cannot obscure the text. Book may be a price cutter or have a remainder mark.
We visited Turkey and found this book a wonderful preview of the city and the country. I like all of Pamuk's books, even though the Turkish people seem to despise him.
Oct 17, 2008
A must read
When it is the first time a European meets a Turk, he gets very surprised. He even thinks the Turk is behaving as he is a European. He believes his way of living in his country is much more different. And when somebody such as from Pakistan meets a Turk, mostly, criticises herand asks "how a muslim you are?" Pamuk in his book is giving the normal life of a normal Turk living in Istanbul. He even criticizes or appriciates his culture as a normal Turk does. If you are a European thinking Turks in an oriental way, or a Muslim that cannot understand why Turks are different from Arabs, this is a very helful book for you to understand Turks.
Apr 19, 2007
Huzun in The City
Ah, to understand a Turk. To comprehend a vast, neglected city like Istanbul, a once-splendid hub of empire and now the veritable locus of "East Meets West." Even better, to glimpse intimately, what makes a great author, great. If you haven't read any of Orhan Pamuk's work, reading this fine memoir is the perfect place to start, it can only whet your appetite for future readings. If like me, you lament that nothing remains unread in Pamuk's translated canon, then this book will feel like pure luxury, like a series of grace notes floating over a collection of excellent fiction.
"Istanbul: Memories and the City" has many tender accounts of the author's childhood and family life along with insightful musings on the character of Istanbul and its denizens, the Istanbullis. Certainly, the book's central theme is an exploration of how relationship and birthplace make us what we are. As Mr. Pamuk makes plain, (and lucky for us) he was born in no ordinary city. In addition, the book harkens directly to the zany, dream-afflicted characters found abundantly in Mr. Pamuk's work, which the memoir makes amply clear, are so much in their parts . . . like unto himself.
Once again, Pamuk has us pondering the structure and nuance of Identity, this time as a grand idea explored through the medium of childhood and birthplace. The sensitive candor with which Mr. Pamuk describes his background and relationship to the City is quite touching. The chief literary pleasure of the book has to be the chapter describing "Huzun" (which may be an aging sister to notions of "Kismet"). "Huzun," according to Pamuk, is a collective melancholy consisting of, in differing degree; longing, nostalgia and unrequited love. Mr. Pamuk explains how the experience of "Huzun" both limits and expands the life of Istanbul, its citizens and himself, as a quality central to shared identity.
Despite Istanbul's storied allure, the book highlights the deeper mystery of Istanbul's past, belying old notions of "orientalism," while revealing the cultural affect of early 20th century "Westernization" and its resulting distortions. The Ottoman past becomes the modern Turkish state within the lifetime of his grandmother and parents. This transformation is most opaque when Mr. Pamuk recalls the interminable, empty "western-style "sitting rooms" used by the apartment dwellers to bear witness to their incipient "Westernization." Photographs of neglected Ottoman-era houses leaning sadly into each other over the Bosphorus, along with pictures of the author's family are an exceedingly pleasant accompaniment to the text.
Also not to be missed, is the chapter on the never-quite-completed and wholly subjective "Encyclopedia Turkey." This chapter captures a certain frenetic intensity that lies with The Turks, a people who did the unthinkable by adopting new habits of dress, writing and socio-political organization within an unimaginably short period of time. The energy behind this intensity appears (to this reader) to counterbalance the undertow of "Huzun," in both Mr. Pamuk's memoir and his collected fiction. By the author's account, the chaos wrought by the redirection of Turkish society and its requisite "Westernization" resulted in difficult years for Pamuk's family and the legacy of Istanbul. Fortunately, today Turkey is the seventh fastest-growing economy in the world. Similarly, Mr. Pamuk is an internationally recognized writer and a Nobel prize winner.
Paramount to "Memories and the City" is the true art of sweet memoir. As Mr. Pamuk engages us in his city and childhood, (even a first romance) the shades of Hoja, young bus riders from "The New Life," shadows of the poet Ka from "Snow" and especially Jelal, that crazed columnist from "The Black Book," rise above the blue haze of Istanbul's "Huzun" with devastating grace, to the reader's extreme delight.
Apr 3, 2007
Discover the heart of secular Islam
I first picked up Pamuk's book because I admire him so much as a writer. I have also been reading everything I can get my hands on about Islam, the religion, its history, its followers, and the civilization that it created. Pamuk is not really an Islamist of any sort, but writes from the perspective of living in the most prominent city of the Ottoman Empire. This perhaps more than any other book provided me a glimpse into the lives of those who grow up in an Islamic culture. He is a totally captivating writer who allows you to see what it is like to live as a modern man in culture that is struggling with modernity.
Publishers Weekly, 2005-04-18 Turkish novelist Pamuk (Snow) presents a breathtaking portrait of a city, an elegy for a dead civilization and a meditation on life's complicated intimacies. The author, born in 1952 into a rapidly fading bourgeois family in Istanbul, spins a masterful tale, moving from his fractured extended family, all living in a communal apartment building, out into the city and encompassing the entire Ottoman Empire. Pamuk sees the slow collapse of the once powerful empire hanging like a pall over the city and its citizens. Central to many Istanbul residents' character is the concept of hazan (melancholy). Istanbul's hazan, Pamuk writes, "is a way of looking at life that... is ultimately as life affirming as it is negating." His world apparently in permanent decline, Pamuk revels in the darkness and decay manifest around him. He minutely describes horrific accidents on the Bosphorus Strait and his own recurring fantasies of murder and mayhem. Throughout, Pamuk details the breakdown of his family: elders die, his parents fight and grow apart, and he must find his way in the world. This is a powerful, sometimes disturbing literary journey through the soul of a great city told by one of its great writers. 206 photos. (June 10) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Alibris, the Alibris logo, and Alibris.com are registered trademarks of Alibris, Inc.
Copyright in bibliographic data and cover images is held by Nielsen Book Services Limited, Baker & Taylor, Inc., or by their respective licensors, or by the publishers, or by their respective licensors. For personal use only. All rights reserved. All rights in images of books or other publications are reserved by the original copyright holders.