Northwestern Events Calendar


MENA Mondays: Bringing Turkish Literature in English: Translating Murathan Mungan's Valor

When: Monday, May 1, 2023
12:30 PM - 2:00 PM CT

Where: University Hall, 201, 1897 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208 map it

Audience: Faculty/Staff - Student - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Cost: free

Contact: MENA  

Group: Middle East and North African Studies

Category: Lectures & Meetings, Academic, Multicultural & Diversity, Global & Civic Engagement


Winner of the 2021 Global Humanities Translation Prize

Among Murathan Mungan’s signature works, Cenk Hikâyeleri (Valor: Stories) has long been considered a milestone of twentieth-century Turkish literature. The six short stories in the collection reflect the author’s multiethnic background (which includes Kurdish, Arab, and Turkish heritage) and represent his lush poetics, literary breadth, and sociopolitical commitments.  
Valor reimagines Shahmaran, a mythical half‑human, half‑snake figure that commonly appears in the folklore of Turkey’s southeastern provinces. Legend interweaves with the contemporary realities of ethnicity, religious dogma, gender, and sexuality. Uncovering hidden narratives within a rich and complicated culture, Mungan’s stories depict self-realization and sexual awakening as they showcase one of Turkey’s most popular literary voices. 

Aron Aji, translator of Valor, is the Director of the MFA in Literary Translation at the University of Iowa. He is a recipient of the PEN Translation Prize for his rendition of The Garden of Departed Cats by Bilge Karasu, and was president of The American Literary Translators Association from 2016-2019. 

Lunch will be served at the event.


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