REPUBLIC OF TURKEY MINISTRY OF CULTURE AND TOURISM

Necip Fazıl Kısakürek

Necip Fazıl KISAKÜREK (1901)

In his own words, he was born in "a huge mansion at Çemberlitaş, in one of the streets descending towards Sultanahmet" (1904). He was educated at various schools, meanwhile at American College, and received his secondary education at Naval School (1922). He received religious courses from Aksekili Ahmed Hamdi and history courses from Yahya Kemal in this military school but he was actually influenced by İbrahim Aşkî, who he defines to have "penetrated into deep and private areas in many inner and outer sciences from literature and philosophy to mathematics and physics". İbrahim Aşkî provided his first contact with Sufism even at a "plan of skin over skin". "After completing candidate and combat classes" of Naval School, Kısakürek entered the Philosophy Department of Darülfünûn and graduated from there (1921-1924). One of his closest friends in philosophy is Hasan Ali Yücel. He was educated in Paris for one year with the scholarship provided by the Ministry of National Education (1924-1925). He worked at the posts of official and inspector at Holland, Osmanlı and İş Banks after returning home (1926-1939), and gave lectures at the Faculty of Linguistics and History and Geography and the State Conservatoire in Ankara and the Academy of Fine Arts in İstanbul (1939-1942). Having established a relation with the press in his youth, Kısakürek quitted being an official after that time and started to earn his living from writing and magazines.

Nacip Fazıl Kısakürek died in his house at Erenköy after an illness that "lasted long but did not affect his intellectual activity and writing" (25 May 1983) and was buried in the graveyard on the ridge of Eyüp after an eventful funeral.

Necip Fazıl was awarded the First Prize of C.H.P. Play Contest in 1947 with his play Sabır Taşı. Kısakürek was awarded the titles of "Great Cultural Gift" by the Ministry of Culture (25 May 1980) and "Greatest Living Poet of Turkish" by the Foundation of Turkish Literature upon the 75th anniversary of his birth.

His Literature Life

In his own words, having "learned to read and to write from his grandfather in very young ages", Kısakürek became "crazy about limitless, trivia reading" until the age of twelve starting from "groups of sentences belonging to lower class writers of the French". He writes as follows: "My interest climbing up to the works such as (Pol ve Virjini), (Graziyella), (La-dam-d-kamelya), (Zavallı Necdet) claiming to be sensational and literary, eventually transformed into an illness and surrounded my nights and days as a net". Having been involved in literature with such a reading passion, Necip Fazıl states that his "poetry started at the age of twelve" and that his mother said "how much I would like you to be a poet" by showing the "poetry notebook of a girl with tuberculosis" lying on the bed next to his mother's bed when he went to visit her staying at the hospital, and adds: "My mother's wish appeared to me as something that I fed inside but I was not aware of until twelve. The motive of existence itself. I decided inside with my eyes on the snow hurling on the window of the hospital room and the wind howling; I will be a poet! And I became".

The first published poem of Necip Fazıl is "Kitabe" poem that he later included in his book Örümcek Ağı with the title "Bir Mezar Taşı" and it was published in the Yeni Mecmua dated 1 July 1923.

After this date Kısakürek expanded his reputation until 1939 with his poems and articles published in magazines such as Yeni Mecmua, Milhi Mecmua, Anadolu, Hayat and Varlık and Cumhuriyet newspaper.

After returning home from Paris in 1925, Necip Fazıl stayed in Ankara intermittently but during long periods and in his third visit he published a magazine called Ağaç on 14 March 1936 by providing the support of some banks. Ağaç, the writers of which included Ahmet Hamdi Tanpınar, Ahmet Kutsi Tecer and Mustafa Şekip Tunç, decided to follow a spiritualist and idealist line on the contrary to the materialist and Marxian ideas supported by the writers such as Burhan Belge, Vedat Nedim Tör, Şevket Süreyya Aydemir and İsmail Husrev Tökin of closed Kadro magazine owned by Yakup Kadri and which influenced the intellectuals of the time greatly. Kısakürek later transferred Ağaç magazine published during six volumes in Ankara to İstanbul, however, not finding much readers, the magazine was closed at the 17th volume.

Necip Fazıl this time published the magazine called Büyük Doğu in 1943 which also had religious and political identity, fronted the rulers with Büyük Doğu that he published intermittently as weekly, daily and monthly until 1978, he was prosecuted because of his articles and publications and the magazine was closed several times. Particularly objecting to secularism and supporting Sultan Abdülhamit, Necip Fazıl gradually became one of the leaders of the Islamist section. It should be stated that as in Ağaç, the writers' cadre is quite cosmopolitan in the first volumes of Büyük Doğu as well. From Bedri Rahmi to Sait Faik, many signatures of the new literature are seen on the pages of the magazine.

However, as Necip Fazıl transferred Büyük Doğu into an organ of particularly religious quarrel, these writers have withdrawn from the pages one after another. Upon the collection of Büyük Doğu in 1947, Necip Fazıl also published a political humor magazine called Borazan, which he could publish only three volumes between November-December.

His Works

Poetry:
Örümcek Ağı (1925), Kaldırımlar (1928), Ben ve Ötesi (1932), Sonsuzluk Kervanı (1955), Çile (1962), Şiirlerim (1969), Esselâm (1973), Çile (1974), Bu Yağmur.

Plays:
Tohum (1935), Bir Adam Yaratmak (1938), Künye (1940), Sabır Taşı (1940), Para (1942), Namı Diğer Parmaksız Salih (1949), Reis Bey (1964), Ahşap Konak (1964), Siyah Pelerinli Adam (1964), Ulu Hakan Abdülhamit (1965), Yunus Emre (1969).

Novels:
Aynadaki Yalan (1980), Kafa Kağıdı (1984-Published as a series in Milliyet newspaper).

Stories:
Birkaç Hikaye Birkaç Tahlil (1932), Ruh Burkuntularından Hikayeler (1964), Hikayelerim (1970).

Memories:
Cinnet Mustatili (1955), Hac (1973), O ve Ben (1974), Bâbıâli (1975).