[SAMMELBAND INCLUDING THE FIRST OTTOMAN LESBIAN PLAY / EARLY QUEER] Çikmaz sokak: Millî tiyatro, 3 perde. [i.e. Dead end: National theater in 3 acts]. [Bound with] Ben… baska. Kirik mahfaza [bound with] Haralambos Cankiyadis

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SÜLEYMAN, SÂHABEDDIN (Turkish / Ottoman writer, member of Fecr-i Âtî movement) (1885-1921).

Muhtar Halid Kitabhanesi / Matbaa-i Hayriye ve Sürekâsi (Muhtar Halid Külliyati Kism-i Millî 8), Istanbul, AH 1329 = [1913].

Contemporary full burgundy cloth. Gilt lettering to spine. Cr. 8vo. (20 x 14 m). In Ottoman script (Old Turkish with Arabic letters). 107 p. Wear on rear board and to spine, occasional foxing on pages. Otherwise, a very good copy.

First edition of this first play including lesbian content in Ottoman/Turkish literature ever in a book form, published in 1913 after serializing in 1909. This sammelband includes two more Ottoman plays in the period, published by the same printing house.

This theatrical text about a lesbian relationship that has never been played or allowed to be played since it was published as a book. It is also the first play written on lesbianism in the Ottoman Empire. In the book, the events that took place in a mansion in Sisli (Constantinople), where two elderly and rich brothers, who were senior officials in the palace, lived together, in 1907 are told. One of the brothers marries a young and beautiful woman, but the woman is in love with another woman and has led the other man in the mansion to marry his lover so that he can bring his lover to the mansion and see him comfortably. In this way, while the relationship between the two women continues in secret, one of the women falls in love with another woman this time. The jealousy crisis of the cheated woman and the various intrigues that develop along the axis of it, and the drama of the old husband, who finally learns that his wife is a "sevici" [i.e. the word 'lesbian' in period slang].

Despite being the text of a highly patriarchal and heterosexist point of view, "Çikmaz sokak" can be regarded as a brave step in terms of referring to the issue that would destroy the values of "holy family", considering the period in which it was written. After this book, the author was suspended from his duty as a French language teacher at Vefa High School and remained unemployed for a long time. 

Muhtar Halid was the Late period Ottoman / Turkish typographer, the elder brother of the famous Turkish typographer and translator Ahmed Ihsan Tokgöz, (1868-1942), and the owner of 'Muhtar Halid Kitabhanesi'. He collaborated with his brother in printing activities, especially when he was publishing 'Servet-i Fünûn' periodicals. (Source: Tanzimat'tan Cumhuriyet'e Tarihi Kentsel Çevrede Mekânlar Üzerinden Bir Semt Okumasi: Cagaloglu Semti Örnegi, by Melek Yalvaç (Ph.D. Thesis)).

Özege 3312.; As of May 2024, eight institutional copies in OCLC 263668945, 83179143, 22044888.