Sculpture of Cumali at Beşiktaş
13 January 1921|
10 January 2001 (age 79)|
Necati Cumalı (13 January 1921 – 10 January 2001) was a Turkish writer of novels, short-stories, essays and poetry. He was born in Florina, Greece, and his family had settled in Urla near İzmir in the framework of the 1923 agreement for the population exchange between Greece and Turkey.
He grew up in Urla and did his studies in İzmir and he started his law education at İstanbul University then completed it in the Law School of the University of Ankara. He started writing poetry while still a student and his poems were published as of early 1940s in such prominent Turkish literary periodicals as Varlık and Servet-i Fünun. Toward the end of that decade, while he was doing his military service, he also started writing short stories in which the profound influence of another important Turkish writer, Sabahattin Ali, could be felt. This, and the themes of social consciousness obvious in his works could be the reason for which he was sometimes cited in the same title as other "writers of the left", although he never actively engaged in political issues.
His vivid portrayal of women in his works was particularly noted.
Author of about 15 books of poetry, and that many books of short-stories and novels, as well as plays, Necati Cumalı died on 10 January 2001 in Istanbul.
One of his best known works is the short-novel, "Dry Summer" (Susuz Yaz), adapted by the film director Metin Erksan to cinema in 1964, starring Hülya Koçyiğit and Erol Taş, and which won the Golden Bear award in Berlin Film Festival that year.
Another famous novel by Necati Cumalı is "Devastated Hills: Macedonia 1900" (Viran Dağlar: Makedonya 1900), where he relates the history of his own family which descended from a long line of Turkish Beys (Cuma Beyleri, "the Beys of Djuma"), with the turmoil in the Balkans providing the background. This novel has been adapted (not very faithfully) for the television by Michel Favart in 2001 as a multinational ARTE production under the title "Le dernier Seigneur des Balkans".
His poetry was translated into French by Tahsin Saraç. German Translations:Ö Der Mann aus Akhisar, Kitab-Verlag Klagenfurt, 2007 Des Balkans letzter Bey (Viran Daglar), Kitab-Verlag Klagenfurt, 2009