Ankara: The Ministry of Culture and the General Secretariat for European Union Affairs (ABGS) will sponsor a Kurdish literature festival, to be held in Bahçesaray, in Van province, in late June honoring the memory of the 17th century Kurdish Sufi poet Feqiye Teyran.
Turkey’s chief EU negotiator Egemen Bağış told Today’s Zaman that the fact that the state has come to the point of sponsoring a Kurdish literature festival is significant for the government’s Kurdish initiative.
Bağış participated in the first Feqiye Teyran festival, which was held last year. In his speech there, he noted that although this very important Kurdish poet had been deliberately ignored for many years, his work did not disappear. “This means we cannot put our heads into the sand and ignore the existence of some problems, as this does not mean that they will disappear,” he had said at the opening of the first festival last year.
“Feqiye Teyran” means “the teacher of the birds” in Kurdish.
Teyran was a Sufi poet at the beginning of the 17th century who lived in Bahçesaray. He is mentioned in the “ant drinking water” story by Yasar Kemal, who is invited to the festival this year alongside many other Turkish and foreign writers.
[Picture: Turkish Writer Yasar Kemal. Photo: Yasar Kemal's Website.]