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Poet (b. 15 January 1902, Thessalonica / Greece - d. 3 June 1963, Moscow / Russia). His full name was Nâzım Hikmet Ran. He used the pen name Orhan Selim in some of his articles in newspapers. He was the grandson of Nâzım Paşa. His great-grandfather on his mother’s side was the Ottoman Commander Mustafa Celalettin Paşa whose real name was Count Konstantin Borjensk and who died as a martyr at the War of Montenegro, was from Poland and descended from Gagauz Turks. Nâzım was the son of Oktay Rifat’s aunt. He attended Göztepe Taş School, Galatasaray High School and Nişantaşı Numune School. He enrolled in Halki Naval Academy and graduated, however he was obliged to leave the army due to ill health. He went to Anatolia in order to take part in the Turkish Independence War and worked as a teacher at Bolu High School for a short time (1921). He went to Moscow via Batum with his friend Vâlâ Nurettin and studied economics and sociology at the University of the Workers of the East (1922-24). On his return, he was sentenced to fifteen years imprisonment together with other writers of the newspaper Aydınlık, so he fled to Russia again (1925). He returned to Turkey to benefit from the amnesty of 1928 but he was arrested on his way to Hopa and was tried in Rize. His conviction was reversed at this trial and at another in Ankara, so he went to İstanbul and worked on the review Resimli Ay and at film studios (1929).

He was sentenced to four years in prison in 1932; however, he was acquitted with the amnesty on the 10th anniversary of the Turkish Republic. He continued his profession in journalism and wrote anecdotes in newspapers Akşam, Son Posta and Tan. He also engaged himself in writing plays, novels and poetry (1933-38). In 1938, due to research he was doing at the War School, he was sentenced to 28 years and 14 months in prison for encouraging rebellion in the army and founding organizations. He stayed in prisons in İstanbul, Çankırı and Bursa for approximately 12 years. He benefited from an amnesty law in 1950, which was a result of a campaign led by Ahmet Emin Yalman and writers who had similar views. After he was released, he worked as a scenarist for some time. He was called to do his military service, as he had been given a full health certificate, so he fled to Moscow for the last time via Romania on a Romanian ship. The same year, he was expatriated. He lived in Poland and Warsaw.

His first poems, in which he depicted his love of nature and admiration for Mevlânâ, were published in the reviews Yeni Mecmua (1918), Birinci Kitap and İkinci Kitap (1919-20). He adopted the style of Mayakovskiy, by whom he was influenced during his years of education in Russia and these poems, written in free meter and on ideological issues, were published in the reviews Aydınlık, Resimli Ay, Hareket, Her Ay (1924-37) and in Yeni Edebiyat, Ses, Yürüyüş, Gün, Yığın, Baştan and Barış (1940-50), where they were signed either İbrahim Sabri or Mazhar Lütfi. He influenced many of his successors as the pioneer of social poetry. The year 2002 was declared the “Year of Nâzım”, as it was the 100th anniversary of his birth.


POETRY: 835 Satır (835 Verses, 1929), Jokond ile Siyau (Mona Lisa and Si-Ya-U, 1929), Varan 3 (That Makes 3, 1920), 1+1=bir (1+1=one, 1930), Sesini Kaybeden Şehir (The City That Lost Its Voice, 1931), Gece Gelen Telgraf (The Telegram That Came at Night, 1932), Benerci Kendini Niçin Öldürdü? (Why Did Benerci Kill Himself? 1932), Taranta Babu'ya Mektuplar (Letters to Taranta Babu, 1935), Portreler (Portraits, 1935), Simavna Kadısı Oğlu Şeyh Bedrettin Destanı (The Legend of Şeyh Bedrettin, Son of the Judge of Simnavna 1936), Kurtuluş Savaşı Destanı (The Legend of the War of Independence, 1965; with the title Kuvay-ı Milliye, 1968), Saat 21-22 Şiirleri (Poems of 9-10 o'clock, 1966), Dört Hapishaneden (From Four Prisons, 1966), Rubailer (Rubai*s, 1966), Yeni Şiirleri (New Poems, 1966), Memleketimden İnsan Manzaraları (Human Panoramas from My Country, 5 volumes, 1966-67), Son Şiirleri (Last Poems, 1970).

PLAY: Kafatası (The Skull, 1932), Bir Ölü Evi Yahut Merhumenin Hanesi (The House of A Dead Man, 1932), Unutulan Adam (The Forgotten Man, 1935), Ferhad ile Şirin (Ferhat and Şirin, 1965), Sabahat (Beauty, 1965), İnek (The Cow, 1965), Ocak Başında / Yolcu (By the Fire / The Traveler, two plays, 1966), Yusuf ile Menofis (Joseph and Menophis, 1967), İvan İvanoviç Var mıydı Yok muydu (Was There Ivan Ivanovich or not 1985).

NOVEL: Kan Konuşmaz (Blood Doesn't Tell, 1965), Yaşamak Güzel Şey Be Kardeşim (It's Great to be Alive, Brother, 1967).

ANECDOTE: İt Ürür, Kervan Yürür (The Dog Barks but the Caravan Walks on, 1965).

FAIRY TALE: Sevdalı Bulut (The Melancholy Cloud, 1963).

LETTER: Kemal Tahir'e Mahpushaneden Mektuplar (Letters to Kemal Tahir from Prison, 1968), Oğlum Canım Evladım Memedim, (My Son, My Life, My Child, Mehmet, 1968), VâNûlara Mektuplar (Letters to the Vala Nurettin Family, 1970), Nâzım ile Piraye (Nâzım and Piraia, letters to his wife, 1976).

All his works were published by Yapı Kredi Publications in 2002, in the series of Tüm Eserleri (All Works, edited by Asım Bezirci, eight volumes, 1975-80).


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