Istanbul

Istanbul

Memories and the City

Book - 2005
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A portrait, by turns intimate and panoramic, of one of the world's great cities, by its foremost man of letters. Blending reminiscence with history; family photographs with portraits of poets and pashas; art criticism, metaphysical musing, and, now and again, a fanciful tale, Pamuk invents an ingenious form to evoke his lifelong home, the city that forged his imagination. He begins with his childhood, his first intimations of the melancholy awareness of living in the seat of ruined imperial glories, in a country trying to become "modern" at the crossroads of East and West. Against a background of shattered monuments, neglected villas, ghostly backstreets, and, above all, the fabled waters of the Bosphorus, he charts the evolution of a rich imaginative life, which furnished a daydreaming boy refuge from family discord and inner turmoil, and which would continue to serve the famous writer he was to become. --From publisher description.
Publisher: New York : Knopf, 2005
Edition: 1st American ed
ISBN: 9781400040957
1400040957
Branch Call Number: 949.61 PAM
Characteristics: xii, 384 p. : ill. ; 22 cm
Additional Contributors: Freely, Maureen 1952-

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SuspectOwls
Jul 25, 2015

Istanbul, according to Mr. Pamuk, is more a state of mind than a place. The book is both a memoir and a meditation on growing up in a place that was the glorious center of a vast and powerful empire and finding parallels between its current reduced state and his family's fall from grace and wealth. He focuses much on "huzun", a state of melancholy unique to Istanbul. This is the Istanbul of the 60's and 70's--very different from the city of today but it's a view of a time and place that can only be revisited through memory. Well written, interesting and enriched by many interesting pictures.

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