Kedi, documentary

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Creeping along the rooftops, slinking between café chairs, lounging on vines, curling up in metro stations, leaping through fish stalls, meditating in mosques – the cats of Istanbul are so familiar to locals that they are part of the urban fabric, indispensably entwined with its mercurial moods....

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Find over 2,000 years of Roman, Byzantine, Ottoman, and modern history in the city’s museums. From Sufism to photography, Istanbul is full of cultural marvels.

One of the earliest inventions of civilization is the written word itself, as well as buildings designed to house the most important documents. The value of learning was so great for ancient civilizations that the Library of Alexandria was known as a wonder of the world; after this library’s...

3080
Seyhan Arman, photo by Merve Göral

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Actress Seyhan Arman has found acclaim for her lead role in Merve Gezen’s short film Nerdesin Aşkım? (Where are you my love?), which won the Canada International Film Festival’s 2016 Perfection Award and the Human Rights Prize at the 2016 Atlas Awards. This is the brief, bitter story of two...

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Yeşim Ustaoğlu - Tereddüt - Clair Obscur

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Appreciators of director Yeşim Ustaoğlu’s films such as Journey to the Sun and Pandora’s Box will relish her latest, Clair-Obscur – another socially conscious drama laden with metaphors from the Turkish landscape, as well as hope and horror in equal measure. The film’s Turkish premiere was at the...

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Mavi Bisiklet, Blue Bicycle - Köneken

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Much like the dark undercurrents in our childhood fairytales, the most memorable children’s movies do not shy away from issues in the adult world. The success of director Ümit Köreken’s film Blue Bicycle , which premiered at the Berlin Film Festival, comes from a subtle, layered approach to the...

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Sabahattin Ali, Photo Credit FilizAli

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Of the three novels Sabahattin Ali wrote in his short life, Madonna in a Fur Coat is not the one recommended to schools by the Ministry of National Education. In fact, between its first publication in 1943 and a fresh printing in 1983, the novel was barely spoken of in Turkey. But since then, it...

11178
Anayurdu, Motherland film

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The word “motherland” is so familiar in its political connotations that we might forget the subtler, and yet more fundamental, nuances of its components: “mother” and “land”. Senem Tüzen’s debut film picks apart these semantics through three generations of women: the young urbanite, the traditional...

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Ahmet Ümit, photo by Merve Göral

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Ahmet Ümit’s latest novel, Farewell, My Beloved Homeland , has sold over 2 million copies since its release in December 2015. Ranked the most translated Turkish author in 2014, Ümit’s reputation stretches across Europe, Asia, and the Americas. Given this popularity, it is tempting to put his...

11021
Burhan Sönmez, Istanbul Istanbul

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Burhan Sönmez’s third novel presents a theme that is all too familiar to intellectuals in Turkey: political imprisonment. For almost a century, the country has seen the sufferings of cultural icons such as Nazım Hikmet, Orhan Kemal, and Yılmaz Güney. It is a topic that touches on Sönmez’s own past...

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Tables of Istanbul

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For the world outside of Turkey, the words “Turkish cuisine” usually conjure a very limited set of images: kebab, baklava, and Turkish delight. If you say “Istanbul cuisine”, most people probably assume that it is the same. Istanbul is part of Turkey, right? As Dr. Zeynep Kılıç explores in her film...

10980

Find reviews and recommendations for Turkish literature and cinema - gaining fame around the world, so browse our selection of top titles.

Turkey is a country that occupies a crucial junction between continents, and its social and economic conditions are as varied as its landscape. For these reasons and more, it is fair to say that Turkey receives a lot of attention in the international media. The number of issues is overwhelming:...

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Nick Laird, Üsküdar Poetry

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For award-winning Northern Irish poet Nick Laird, the Üsküdar International Poetry Festival has been a way for he and Istanbul to discover each other. This convergence of poetic energy on the Asian shore produces a mix of nations, views, and styles that suits the eclectic mosaic of Istanbul....

10946

Find reviews and recommendations for Turkish literature and cinema - gaining fame around the world, so browse our selection of top titles.

“There was, and there was not. In an earlier time, when God had many servants, when the sieve was in the chaff, when camels were town criers, when fleas were barbers, when I rocked my mother’s cradle…” For Western readers, these words might seem like the opening of a surrealist novel. For Turkish...

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The Girl on the Bridge, photo by Merve Göral

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With its landscape and architectural diversity, Istanbul has always been an inspiration for artists. It is no surprise that when cinema emerged in Turkey, the city played a significant role not only as the country’s movie industry center but also a location for various films. Apart from great...

10916

Established in 1994, Robinson Crusoe 389 has been selling a wide variety of Turkish, English, and French books. Indeed, apart from a few other bookshops, Robinson Crusoe is a familiar name for ex-pats, visitors, and Istanbulites and it is known as one of the best-known English language bookstores...

3,878
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Size isn't everything. This petite bookstore is packed with literary and visual treasures. Its primary focus is the coffee table book. And while we all have a friend who scoffs at coffee table books for being superficial, let's also admit that they are wonderful to look at - and, Magnolia excels at...

4,785
No

In 1991, Pandora Bookstore opened its doors on Büyük Parmakkapı Street, just off Istiklal. Since its foundation, the bookstore has gained a reputation for hold a vast collection of both Turkish and English books. In fact, with branches at Bosphorus and Koç Universities, it is also known for its...

3,882
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Being constantly on the lookout for great new bookstores in Istanbul, we discovered Minoa Bookstore & Café in Beşiktaş. Lacking the generic interior décor often found in the much larger coffee shop/bookstore chains of Istanbul, the independent Minoa offers its loyal bookworms a place of...

4,972
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One of Istanbul’s exclusively English-language bookshops, Greenhouse stocks over 60,000 titles catered towards the English reader, whether an expat, just passing through or trying to improve his or her English. Children’s books, hard-to-find Christmas readers, and teen titles abound. An incredible...

3,890
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Nail Kitabevi (Bookshop) & Cafe is located in a historic building in the quaint Kuzguncuk neighborhood of Üsküdar. This two-story bookshop, made up of interior and exterior seating for coffee drinkers, forms the corner of İcadiye Caddesi and Bereketli Sokak. A magnificent doorway defines Nail,...

5,118
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The special privilege of Istanbul as being a city between two seas is capitalized by Denizler Kitabevi, a bookstore and hobbies shop specializing in items from the sea. Hundreds, if not thousands of maps decorate the walls of this interesting and eccentric shop located in a 130 year old building...

3,891
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645 Düukkan is a bookstore for the intellectual that has an afinity for with special prints and editions and topics such as Surrealist Manifestos, Charles Bukowski and the Beat Generation, Russian avant-garde Manifestos, the Poetry of Allen Ginsberg. The bookshop also holds many smaller publishing...

3,988
No

Established in 1994, Robinson Crusoe 389 has been selling a wide variety of Turkish, English, and French books. Indeed, apart from a few other bookshops, Robinson Crusoe is a familiar name for ex-pats, visitors, and Istanbulites and it is known as one of the best-known English language bookstores...

4,219
No

A self-proclaimed “engine of culture,” this Bebek book boutique supplies photography, culture, and fashion tomes printed by the international Assouline publishing house. Not the place to pick up the latest Stephen King thriller, Assouline is a luxury platform that has expanded from the printed page...

4,251
No

Size isn't everything. This petite bookstore is packed with literary and visual treasures. Its primary focus is the coffee table book. And while we all have a friend who scoffs at coffee table books for being superficial, let's also admit that they are wonderful to look at - and, Magnolia excels at...

4,608
No