orhan pamuk

Pamuk is a Turkish author who was born in 1952 and has published multiple novels which are available in English.  I’ve read two of them, The Museum of Innocence,  and Istanbul.  Of the two, Museum is my favorite.  He eloquently captures the angst that has characterized Turkish culture the past 100 years as they deal with the issue of Westernization forced upon them by Attaturk.  Museum is a love story but I did not value it so much for that as for his ability to capture the pulse of his country as it wrestled with new values and liberties.  There was, however, a pervasive sadness that came across which probably always accompanies a culture that has had its religion and value-system brought into question.

I recently spent about 27 hours in Istanbul and found it a lovely city.  I loved its tavernas—–a popular beer Effes and the historic raki.  And its people were wonderful.  Also, tulips were abounding at that point, in late April.  They were spectacular.  Here is one picture I captured of the tulips.


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