Nihal Yeginobali

Nihal Yeğinobalı

Nihal Yeginobali (Nihal Yeğinobalı) is a Turkish writer who was born in Manisa and moved to Istanbul when she was eight years old. She attended American College for Girls (ACG45), and upon graduation, went to the US to study literature in New York. When she returned to Turkey, she began publishing translated works, of which she has more than a hundred now.

More than fifty years ago, she was one of the most prominent figures of literature – under a different name: Vincent Ewing. She was a young woman of twenty when she published her first novel Genç Kızlar (Young Girls) which was an example of fictitious translation.

She must have been a forceful personality-- not many girls of her age would have been able to talk a publishing company into printing her translation of a new and exciting book by an American writer, a writer who never existed. Yeginobali, a keen young writer at the time, wanted to write a novel about life at a girls’ college, but was tired of being turned down by publishing companies who kept telling her that she was too young to be a writer. She also felt that the eroticism in her writing might be an overdose for readers of the time, especially coming from a young woman like herself. Aware that translated novels were much more in demand than work by new Turkish writers, she plotted, and convinced a publishing company to expect a chapter of translation (!) from Vincent Ewing’s book each week.

The book hit the best sellers list in no time. Though Yeginobali was initially planning to reveal her identity, after the book came out to so much attention, she decided to keep at her game, and enjoy the commentaries from her hidden corner.

Finally, in 2004, to coincide with a reprint of the novel by Can Publishing, Yeginobali decided that the time had come to add on her own name next to that of Vincent Ewing’s. The book’s new issue is among the publisher’s best selling novels. She recently wrote her memoirs, Cumhuriyet Çocukları (The Republic’s Children), published by Can Yayınları. Spanning the first ten years of her life, Yeginobali’s memoirs provide the reader with a vivid picture of life in a small Anatolian town during the very first years of the Republic. Filmmakers are currently interested in her two other novels Mazi Kalbimde bir Yaradır (1988), and Sitem (1997) which suggest subtle readings of suppressed sexuality in Turkish society.

Major works

  • Genç Kızlar (Novel)
  • Mazi Kalbimde Bir Yaradır (Novel)
  • Sitem (Novel)
  • Belki Defne (Novel)
  • Cumhuriyet Çocuğu (Memoirs)

References

  • "Graduates in the News." RC Quarterly 23 (2004): 18.
  • "Nihal Yeğinobalı." Imge Kitapevi. 2004. 09 May 2007 .

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