Meltem Arikan
Typography

Throughout my life I pitied myself and isolated myself from the real orbiting world.

I designed my own world and became used to living in it.

My world was neat, static, risk-free and virtual.  In my world there was no dialogue; no relationships; and no movement.

I thought I was happy. I forgot that I had created it. I resisted reality, I kept sheltering in my own life.

Resisting, resisting, I was going nowhere, undecided which way to go, either my world or the real world.  I knew my world like the palm of my hand.

I covered up my feelings, everyday I set my own scene and existed within a blind knot within me.

I chose the real world.  The feeling I couldn’t define, the memories etched in my skin, inexplicable situations, scenes that defied understanding, unprotected events…. I wanted to understand.   I wanted and wanted a lot.

I chose to exist. Since I lived with men and women, I chose to understand them. I wanted to understand. And I understood that everybody was both pathetic and savage.

I saw that all of you inhabit your own worlds.  Just like mine, none of them overlapped other realities.  This is a game.

But I want to live so I’m breaking the game.

Hayatım boyunca kendime acıyıp durdum ve gerçek, dönen dünyadan elimi eteğimi çektim.

Bir dünya tasarladım kendime, onun içinde yaşamaya alıştım.

Benim dünyam düzenli, statik, risksiz ve sanaldı. Benim dünyamda diyalog yoktu, ilişki yoktu, hareket yoktu.

Mutlu olduğuma inanıyordum. Unuttum, onu ben yaratmıştım.

Direndim gerçeklere, hep kendi dünyama sığındım. Direnirken gerçeklere… Kalakaldım iki yol ağzında . Ya benim dünyam, ya gerçek olan. Benim dünyam avucumun içi gibiydi.

Duygularımı örttüğüm, her gün yeni sahneler kurduğum, kendi içimde kördüğüm…

Ben gerçeği seçtim. Tanımlayamadığım hisler, tenimde yazılı anılar, açıklayamadığım durumlar, anlayamadığım sahneler, tavır alamadığım olaylar…   Ben anlamak istedim.  Hem de çok istedim.

Varolmayı seçtim.  Madem kadınlar ve erkeklerle yaşıyordum sizleri de anlamayı seçtim. Anlamak istedim.  Anladım, herkes acınası, acımasız.

Baktım hepinizin  kendi dünyası varmış meğer, tıpkı benimki gibi,  hiçbiri gerçekle örtüşmeyen, kendini seçmeyen… Bu bir oyun.

Ben oyun oynamak değil  yaşamak istiyorum bu nedenle de oyunu bozuyorum.

Meltem Arıkan is a Turkish novelist and playwright.
  Her first short stories and essays were published in various literary journals during 1992 – 1995. Her first novel, Ve… Veya… Belki… (And… Or… Maybe…) was published in 1999, followed by Evet... Ama... Sanki... (Yes… But… As If…) in 2000 and Kadın Bedenini Soyarsa (Undressing Herself) in 2002.

Her fourth novel Yeter Tenimi Acıtmayın (Stop Hurting My Flesh) was banned in early 2004 by the Committee to Protect the Minors from Obscene Publications, with the accusation of "Writing about the non-existing incest fact in Turkey, attempting to disturb the Turkish family order with a feminist approach.” The ban was lifted after two months and Arıkan has been awarded with “Freedom of Idea and Statement Prize 2004” by the Turkish Publishers’ Association.

After her first 6 novels, Arikan wrote the script for the play Oyunu Bozuyorum (I’m Breaking the Game) which premiered in August at the Zurich Theater Spectacle, performed by Garajistanbul and awarded the “New Unique Play” prize from VIII. Lions Theatrical Awards in 2007. She published a research book titled Beden Biliyor (The Body Knows) in 2008. In 2009 another play, Parallel, whose dramaturgy was by Arıkan, was staged by Garajistanbul as a part of the Linz 2009: European Capital of Culture program. Her last novel, Özlemin Beni Savuran (Your Yearning That Sways Me) was published in June 2009.

Her fifth novel Zaten Yoksunuz (You Exist In No Way) was published in 2005, followed by Umut Lanettir (Hope is a Curse) in 2006. After

Awards:

“Freedom of Idea and Statement Prize 2004” by the Turkish Publishers’ Association.

“New Unique Play” prize from VIII. Lions Theatrical Awards in 2007.

Meltem Arikan has been named as one of our Heroes of Revolution 2.0.

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