This year’s edition of the Read My World festival, in the fall of 2018, is devoted to the literatures in and of Turkey. On 23 April, the two curators of the festival, Aylime Aslı Demir and Süreyyya Evren, will discuss some of their ideas for the upcoming edition of Read My World, and talk about their own work as writers, curators and activists in the current cultural and political climate in Turkey and Europe.
A wide range of poets, novelists, artists and activists will visit the Read My World festival in fall to show and celebrate the contemporary voices and faces of literature and the arts in Turkey.
The conversation this afternoon wishes to ask how, in our era of cultural globalization and national retrenchment, literature, and in a wider sense the arts, help us to look for the fringes, the interstices, beyond and between established cultures. For it is a fact that not all literatures are represented equally on the global stage, in spite of the myth of open access to a global world literature.
It is also a fact that national literatures exclude many of the counter voices that we consider vital in our transnational understanding of culture and the arts. Both represent a threat to what writer Ilija Trojanow has called the ‘confluences’ of cultures: the fact that exchange, fusion, translation, confrontation is at the core of the creative power of cultures.
About the speakers
Aylime Aslı Demir is a curator, and works as an editor for KAOS GL Magazine that is Turkey’s first and currently only printed LGBTI magazine from 1994 to nowadays. She is also chief-editor of Turkey’s first and only peer reviewed queer studies journal which began to be published in 2014. Apart from her editor career, she was carrying out Queer Theory lectures in gender studies department for 4 years at Gender Studies Department, Ankara University. She has been coordinator of feminist forum for three years with prominent feminists and LGBTI activists from around the World and Turkey.
Süreyyya Evren is a writer working on literature, contemporary art, and radical politics. His literary works include several novels, short story books, poems and critical essays. His writings have also been published in various languages including English, German, French, Czech, Serbian, Icelandic and Albanian. Currently works as an editor at Arter, Istanbul.
Lora Sarıaslan is an art historian and curator. She was curator at Istanbul Modern and prior to that worked at the Dallas Museum of Art in Texas, USA. She has curated exhibitions internationally, among others the 2nd Mardin Biennial:Double Take in Turkey (2012) and more recently the curator of This yearning is ours!, Center of Contemporary Art Znaki Czasu in Torun, Poland (2016). She contributes to publications on modern and contemporary art as a member of AICA (International Association of Art Critics) Turkey and the National Correspondent for EMF (European Museum Forum) for Turkey. She is currently a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Amsterdam.
Guido Snel is a novelist, and senior lecturer European Studies at the University of Amsterdam. In 2014 he published Naar Istanbul(Arbeiderspers), a book of travelogue, fact and fiction about the city of Istanbul.
Süreyyya Evren and Aylime Aslı Demir
A program by Read My World in association with UvA Cosmopolitan Confluences (ARTES)