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BIOGRAPHY

Mehmet Yashin (Yaşın) is one of the unique poets of contemporary Turkish poetry. His poems, novels and essays are considered parts of the literature of Cyprus and Greece alongside Turkey. He is one of the internationally best-known contemporary poets and authors from Cyprus. The different voice and sensibility that he brings to Turkish language poetry is based on his hybrid literary sources, combining the Turkish and Greek cultures of the Mediterranean, creating a dramatic and narrative lyricism, using Turkish in his writing by reference to historically and geographically variant forms of the language, as well as his poetic themes which give importance to personal experiences.

He was born as a member of a cosmopolitan Cypriot family and experienced inter-communal conflicts during his childhood. His parents, who were both parts of the literary and cultural world, separated before he was born. In 1976, he went to Turkey and studied International Relations at the Faculty of Political Sciences in Ankara University. He then completed a master's degree in political history at the Institute of Social Sciences of Istanbul University. His first poetry collection won Academy Poetry Prize in Istanbul in 1985, but it was banned by the Turkish military junta which made a coup d’etat in 1980, and he was deported from Turkey in 1986 for what was characterized as his 'subversive' poetry. He went to Britain where he began post-graduate studies at the Centre for Byzantine-Ottoman and Modern Greek Studies at Birmingham University. He worked on Cypriot and Turkish literatures and cultures, and he received a postgraduate degree from Middlesex University, London. He also studied Greek Language and Literature at the University of Athens. In 1993, following the lifting of his deportation order, he returned to Istanbul and he published his prize winning first novel in 1994, but went back to London in 1996. He has taught comparative literature, translation studies, creative writing, Cypriot studies and contemporary Turkish literature at various universities in Britain, Turkey and both parts of Cyprus. He settled in between Cambridge, Nicosia and Istanbul from 2002 to 2016. Since then he has been living in Athens.

He has published 10 poetry collections, 3 novels, 3 essay collections, 3 anthologies and literary studies of multilingual Cypriot poetry in Istanbul. His books have played an important role in re-defining the literary traditions of Cyprus and Turkey. He is also known as one of the leading figures in post-1974 Cypriot poetry and literature as well as post-1980s Turkish poetry. In post-1980s Turkish poetry, he also became influential through his poems which reflected a different understanding and his critical literary essays. He developed such concepts and approaches to literature like ‘step-mothertongue,’ the center-periphery,’ and ‘Turkish minority literature.’ His work has been translated into more than 20 languages and his books have been published in various European countries. His poems were arranged to music and adapted for the stage as well as to visual arts. As a literary personality who is known with his novels, essays, literary criticism and study alongside his poetry, he played a transformative rule in the literary and cultural traditions of Cyprus, Turkey and Greece.

Awards:
1985 Turkish Academy Poetry Prize & A. Kadir Poetry Prize.
1995 Cevdet Kudret Novel Prize.
2005 Memet Fuat Literary Criticism and Study Prize.

Bibliography:
Türkçe:
Şiir:
Sevgilim Sevgilim Ölü Asker (1984, 3. basım 1997, Adam, İstanbul.)
Işık-Merdiven (1986, 2. basım 1997, Adam, İstanbul)
Pathos (1990, 2. basım 1997, Adam, İstanbul.)
Sözverici Koltuğu (1993, Adam, İstanbul.)
Hayal Tamiri (1998, Adam, İstanbul.) Adı Kayıplar Listesinde (2002, YKY, İstanbul.)
Toplu Şiirler: 1977-2002 (2007, Everest, İstanbul.)
Turuncu Kuş (2007, Everest, İstanbul.)
Kalbi Durmuş Zamanda (2009, Everest, İstanbul.)
Evden Kaçan Çocuk (2013, YKY, İstanbul.)
Dokuz Şiir Kitabı – Toplu Şiirler: 1975-2013 (2014, YKY, İstanbul.)
Abuk (2017, Doğan Kitap, İstanbul.)

Roman:
Soydaşınız Balık Burcu (2003: 4. Basım 2014, YKY, İstanbul.)
Sınırdışı Saatler (2003; 2. basım 2007, Everest, İstanbul.)
Sarı Kehribar (2014, YKY, İstanbul.)

Deneme, Eleştiri ve Antolojik İnceleme:
Poeturka (1995, Adam, 3. basım 2018, Yitik Ülke, İstanbul.)
Kozmopoetika (2002, YKY, 3. Basım 2018, Yitik Ülke, İstanbul.)
Toplu Yazılar: 1978-2005 (2007, Everest, İstanbul.)
Kıbrıslıtürk Şiiri Antolojisi (1994, YKY, İstanbul.)
Eski Kıbrıslı Şiiri Antolojisi (1999, YKY, İstanbul.)
Diller ve Kültürler Arası Bir Edebiyat İncelemesi: Kıbrıs Şiiri Antolojisi: MÖ 9. yy.-MS 20. yy. (2005, Adam, İstanbul.)

Ελληνικά:
Άγγελοι Εκδικητές (poetry, trans. Zissis Ainalis, Vakxikon.gr, 2015, Athens.)
Ομoγενής Ιχθύς (novel, trans. Rodi Tomourzoukgoul, Astarte, 2018, Athens.)

English:
Don't Go Back to Kyrenia (poetry, trans. Taner Baybars, ed. Peter Bush, 2001, Middlesex University Press World Literature Series, UK)
Wartime (poetry, trans. Taner Baybars, 2007, Happy Dragons' Press, UK)
Step-Mothertongue: From Nationalism to Multiculturalism Literatures of Cyprus, Greece and Turkey (ed. Essays, 2000, Middlesex University Press, World Literature Series, UK)

Français:
Constantinople n'attend plus personne (poetry, trans. Alain Mascarou, Bleu Autour, 2008, Saint-Pourçain-sur-Sioule.)
La recontre de Sapho et Rumi (poetry, trans. Alain Mascarou-Asli Altug, La Refugee, 2011, Marseilles.)

Deutsche:
Istanbul wartet auf niemanden mehr (poetry, trans. Recai Hallaç, Christina Tremmel-Turan, Tevfik Turan, Auf dem Ruffel, 2014, Hamburg.)

Italiano:
Il drago ha anche le ali (poetry, trans. Rosita D'Amora, Argo, 2008, Lecce.)
Le ore del confino (parts of a novel and biography, trans. and intro. Rosita D'Amora and Anna Lia Proietti Ergun, Mediterraneo è Cultura, 2008, Lucera.)
Il vostro fratello del segno dei pesci (novel, trans. Rosita D'Amora and Anna Lia Proietti, Gremese, 2010, Rome.)

Latviesu:
Vecas dziesmas no Jaunas pilsetas (poetry, trans. Uldis Berzins, Adrina, 2008, Riga.)

Nederland:
De nachtbus (poetry, trans. Dick Koopman, ed. Kees Klock, Uitgeverij Liverse, 2010, Bordeauxreeks, Hoavelaken-Amsterdam.)

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