Asian studies in Lithuania
Original language: Turkish
Translated from: Turkish
Authors: Pamuk, Orhan
Translated by: Pilkauskaitė-Kariniauskienė, Justina
Full translated source bibliographical description:

Orhan Pamuk, KAR,  Iletişim Yayınları, Istanbul, 2012

ISBN: 978-609-466-056-6
Published in: Vilnius
Published on: 2014
Publisher: Tyto alba

The epicenter of this novel is three-day period incidents of small town Kars in Turkey which is cut off from the world of unremitting snow and military coup. The poet Ka after 12 years in political exile in Frankfurt comes there to  write an article about the municipal elections and investigate a succesion of suicides by young woman in the city. In this book we can seperate two stories that share widely all the accidents, main character feelings. Beside this book has got a lot of secrets and …the reader whant to know all the answers of it. This political novel is all coming together in a story about artist, a detective and a love story.

It soon emerges that Ka is not greatly interested in girls who want to die because of headscarves. All his attention was into town problems: poverty, unemployment, the dissapointment, the conflict between a secular state and Islamic government ideologies. Kars is like particular microcosmos, it shows all topical questions of whole  Turkey. This city sadness can be understand as a spirited fight to new born european life style. Ka does not feel right in Germany, either in his homeland, so he watches all the accidents from the side view, but beside this he falls in all incidents center.

The story is full of political accidents. The execution in National Theatre, suddenly announced military coup, which analysis help to treat it as an artistic coup. Secret meetings, mediation between islamistics and military, between military and secret service. Being not sure about any of these contrastic sides, Ka does not show his personal convictions. It seems that the real reason of his behaviour is that he fell in  love with beautiful ex classmate Ipek, who was the main hope to find in Kars.

All efforts to understand what is happening in Kars, trying to save relived love have inspire Ka to write his verses again. His impulsive creations are written in very hypnotic way, which shows poet‘s mood, experiences, thoughts. Poetry and all existential questions that Kars made to rethink encouraged Ka to consider Allah being. We can reckoner that Ka‘s rush between traditions, religion and cosmopolitanism, the crossroads of East and West symbolizes all Turkey situation.

Another influential character is Ka‘s friend and all story narrator Orhan Pamuk. The writer includes himself to the novel, so we can consider that this story is full of biographical facts. Orhan is narrating not only wide explanations about important accidents. He is also going to Kars after some years his friend died because of aim to find biographic motives for book about Ka. The narrators experience is quite similar to his friend‘s.

Orhan Pamuk (1952) is one of the most famous nowadays turkish writer, who was awarded with the Nobel Prize in 2006.‘‘Snow‘‘ is attempt to reckon contemporary Turkey life, connection with West and turkish identity. This novel is considered as the most controversial and the most discussed O. Pamuk creation.

Initiators of the project: Japan foundation VDU