[ATTICUS ROLE MODEL IN TURKEY] Bülbülü öldürmek. [= To kill a mockingbird]. Translated by Özay Sunar. Cover ills. by Cemal Dündar.
HARPER LEE, (1926-2016).
Halk Kitabevi, Ist., 1963.
Rare first Turkish edition of "To Kill a Mockingbird", Harper Lee's 1961 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel (has been voted "the most inspirational book of all time", beating the Bible into second place).
The sixties have caused earth-shattering changes not only for the world but also for Turkey. Turkish leftist intellectuals, who reconsidered ethical and legal questions right after the 1960 Coup in Turkey, ensured that contemporary works on the subject were translated into Turkish on the way to the ’68 Movement. At the same time, Islamists were excitedly interested in the movement led by Malcolm X (1925-1965), an African-American Muslim human rights activist in America. In such a political environment, it was a must to translate immediately Lee's "To Kill a Mockingbird", like a book a worldwide sensation on civil rights in America into Turkish. Thus, two years after the original American edition, the book was translated into Turkish by Özay Sunar who had actively translated the contemporary and the classical Western literature between the years of 1950-70.
From a child's point of view, narrating the racial injustice in the Depression-era South, the book sells one million copies per year in America, and Scout remains one of the most beloved characters of American fiction in the hearts of the readers worldwide. "To Kill a Mockingbird" began to be taught in high schools as a textbook in Turkey for the teaching of English. After the book, its movie adaptation was screened in Turkish movie theaters under the name of "Ugursuz Kus" [i.e. The Sinister Bird].
The effect of the book continued for years in Turkey, and "To Kill a Mockingbird" even adapted to a periodic radio play in the '60s.
As to the illustrator, Cemal Dündar, (1937-2004), was a Turkish graphic designer who made the cover illustrations of many American classics translated into Turkish and he illustrated numerous children’s magazines, and textbooks.
Original bdg. Dust wrapper. Demy 8vo. (21 x 14 cm). In Turkish. 296 p. Slightly chipped on extremities of dust wrapper. Other than that, a very good copy. Only one copy in OCLC in only Bogaziçi University Library in Turkey: 949387627. First Turkish Edition. Rare.