Memories of a City Essay introduction. The narrator creates dual, often conflicting thematic trends, unfolding Istanbul both internally and externally in terms of past and present, East and West and black and white. On one hand, the past, thoroughly glorified, represents the lost Ottoman Empire. Touching not only upon the past and present, Istanbul is perceived through the new and crumbling, a place of first love and heartbreak and as an exotic creation of the foreigner and melancholic experience of a citizen.
Like that book, this is a murder mystery set within a very confined group, not of monks this time, but miniaturists. These painters and craftsmen work for the Ottoman sultan Murad III, illustrating the manuscripts that glorify his victories and rule.
Pamuk supplies ample history, as well as a chronology in the back of the book, so the reader knows that was a twilight period for miniaturists. Murad III was a munificent patron of their art, especially after the empire entered a period of extended peace.
However, the golden glow of the era comes from the sun setting on an artistic tradition that had spread, along with the precious secret of red ink, from China across Central Asia to Turkey over the course of many centuries and countless wars.
There is no attempt to depict individuals, they claim, but universals, not people or horses as the artist sees them, but as they are in the mind of Allah. At the same time that miniaturists are under theological attack, the aesthetic primacy of their work is undercut by the success of Western techniques.
The mere idea of this stirs up fundamentalist elements in Istanbul, followers of the Hoja of Erzuumi, who feel that to paint the sultan in such a way would amount to blasphemy. The Hoja never puts in an appearance, but a mob of his followers finally destroy the coffee shop where the miniaturists congregate.
Coffee is bad enough by itself, but coffee shops are dens of every conceivable vice, and this particular one is made unbearable by the presence of a storyteller who mocks the fundamentalists.
Characters pass the story from one to the next, and back again. They address the reader and point out the inconsistencies and implausibilities of the story, as one would expect in a postmodernist work.
It is not just the dead that talk directly to the reader, but the color red, as well as series of drawingsincluding a dog, a tree, a gold coin, and deathall of which are given voice by the coffeehouse storyteller. Pictures are not the only representational art, after all.
It is nonetheless impossible for humans not to tell stories, and there are many tales within this novel. Aside from the storyteller, whose individual character is always hidden behind the objects he gives voice to like a good novelistall the characters repeatedly explain their aesthetic and moral The entire section is 1, words.
Summary Critical Essays Analysis You'll also get access to more than 30, additional guides andHomework Help questions answered by our experts.For the reader who does possess such knowledge, however, “My Name is Red" by Orhan Pamuk effectively breathes life into history and helps the reader to understand some of the dilemmas and influences that gave rise to these two distinct periods in miniature painting.
Anadolu-Okur, Nilgun, ed. Essays Interpreting the Writings of Novelist Orhan Pamuk. New York: Edwin Mellen Press, New York: Edwin Mellen Press, A scholarly critique of Pamuk’s work.
This work provides extensive critical analysis of Orhan Pamuk’s work. The contributors establish Pamuk as a universal author whose contributions to the genre of novel have not only enriched our understanding of modern Turkish literature, but have generated discussions on national identity.
Essays Interpreting the Writings of Novelist Orhan Pamuk: the Turkish Winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature / edited, with an introduction by Nilgun Anadolu-Okur. – Lewiston, N.Y.: . Add tags for "Essays interpreting the writings of novelist Orhan Pamuk: the Turkish winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature".
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