Novels of Turkish German Settlement

November 2007
242 pages
9x6 in
Studies in German Literature Linguistics and Culture
ISBN: 9781571133748
Format: Hardback
Library eBook
Camden House
BISAC LIT004170, HIS014000, SOC007000

Novels of Turkish German Settlement

Cosmopolite Fictions

Tom Cheesman

A broad view of the impact of Turkish German writers' "literature of settlement" on the German literary scene and on German society.
Germany has become home to some 2.5 million people of Turkish background since mass recruitments in the 1960s and 1970s to man the "economic miracle." An increasingly settled Turkish German population now asserts a permanent place in Germany: over a third were born there, and a third have German citizenship. At the same time, Turkish German writers have become integral to the German literary scene. They include bestselling novelists Renan Demirkan and Akif Pirinçci; prestigious literary prize-winners Emine Sevgi Özdamar and Feridun Zaimoglu; and the critically acclaimed Aras Ören and Zafer Senocak. Tom Cheesman focuses on these and other writers' perspectives on cosmopolitan ideals and aspirations, ranging from glib affirmation to cynical transgression and melancholy nihilism. People of Turkish background are still not always recognized as equal participants in German life, but Turkish German writers' interventions defy marginalizing concepts such as "literature of migration" or "intercultural literature." What Cheesman calls their "literature of settlement" is paradigmatic for European cultures adapting to diversity and negotiating new identities. He shows German culture to have moved decisively beyond such "polite fictions" as the term "guest worker" or the slogan "not a country of immigration."

Tom Cheesman is Senior Lecturer in German at Swansea University, Wales.

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Table of Contents

Prelude in the Television Studio
Extending the Concept of Germanness
Natural Born Cosmopolitans?
Seven Types of Cosmopolitanism
The Turkish German Novel since "It Always Ends in Tears"
In Quarantine: Zafer Senocak
Gender and Genre: Testimonial and Parodic Cosmopolitanisms
Ali Alias Alien: Mutations of the UnCosmopolitan
Postscript: Astronauts in Search of a Planet
Works Cited


Students and scholars of literature in Germany after 1945 have a useful resource in Tom Cheesman's accessible new book. .The book's major strengths lie in its sweeping perspective and its excellent accessible overview of Turkish German literature from a deliberately anti-essentialist perspective. MONATSHEFTE

Cheesman has proven that he remains one of the foremost scholars of Turkish German literature, and this book stands as a major contribution to the growing body of secondary literature on the topic. FOCUS ON GERMAN STUDIES

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