The first book her mother read to her was “The Little Black Fish” by Samed Behrengi, in which a little black fish leaves her friends and family for the ‘big sea’. Her mother changed the ending of the story, so she would not find out that the fish never returned home. She always thought that after learning enough stories she would go back home. This must be the reason why she is still wandering the World and collecting stories.
I was eight years old when my mother gave me a Poetry Notebook. “Apparently I have to write poetry”, I thought then; it never occurred to me that the notebook was to recite poems. Then on I kept on writing, never knowing that it was not ordinary or usual.
When I look at that little poetry notebook, I am surprised to see that I am still following the same pattern when writing: it is either anger or beauty that makes me write as it had been decades ago.
Ece Temelkuran is one of the Turkey’s best known novelist and political commentators. She has contributed to the Guardian, Newstatesman, New Left Review, Le Monde Diplomatique, Frankfurter Rundschau, Der Spiegel, The New York Times and Berliner Zeitung.
Her books of investigative journalism broach subjects that are highly controversial in Turkey, such as the Kurdish and Armenian issues and freedom of expression.
Her novel Düğümlere Üfleyen Kadınlar (Women Who Blow on Knots) won a PEN Translates award, sold over 120.000 copies in Turkey, and has been published in translation in Germany, Croatia, Poland, Bosnia and France with editions also forthcoming in China, Italy and the USA.
Temelkuran was born into a political family in İzmir, known to be the most liberal city in the country. Educated as a lawyer in the capital city Ankara, she never practiced the profession except once to defend Kurdish children in a political class action as a symbolic act. Bored by Law School, she started to work for the newspaper Cumhuriyet during her second year at the university in 1993.
There is a certain comradely beauty in the fact that we all are dealing with the same peril. Since we all talk about nothing but the pandemic the world somehow finally feels in sync.
"Ece Temelkuran is a passionate authentic voice whose fearless stand against authoritarian incursion is inspiring. She writes with an urgent conviction that has never been more important than now"
"But why does 1915 matter in 2010? It was the question that Temelkuran's murdered friend, the Armenian editor, Hrant Dink, asked, and the question Temelkuran set out to answer."
"Ece Temelkuran dissects the process by which false and true national memories are created and why they are sustained. This is a book that transforms this ancient Armenian-Turkish dispute into a human drama.
“Ece Temelkuran has ten thousands eyes to look at the world.”
‘What a brave woman! And what a fine, stylish and intelligent writer! Mixing sarcasm, anger, wit, and irony as well as hard facts, Ece Temelkuran has provided us with an informative and moving account of Turkey’s seemingly inexorable drift into authoritarianism.’
author of The Culture of the Europeans
‘Ece Temelkuran is a patriot – no other word will do.'