Kurdish books attract attention at Istanbul book fair
ISTANBUL - Anadolu Agency
AA photoKurdish books are attracting considerable attention in this year's International Istanbul Book Fair, publishers at the fair said on Nov. 15.
Istanbul-based Avesta Publishing manager Rahime Aktürk said his company is presenting over 50 books at the fair, and the best-selling writers are Syrian-Kurdish poet and author Jan Dost, Kurdish writer Hesene Mete and Kurdish linguist Celadet Bedirxan.
Aktürk said an authoritative Kurdish cultural institution is very much needed to rule on issues for the Kurdish language and literature.
"Different opinions might exist among people regarding the Kurdish language. But what is not normal is that there is not a Kurdish language committee that will make decisions about it," Aktürk said.
Qahir Bateyi, an official from the Kurdish publishing house Sitav, said people coming to their stand at the fair are mostly interested in Kurdish education and children books.
Presenting 21 Kurdish books at the fair, Azad Zal, the owner of J&J Publishing, said his best-sellers are Kurdish novels and dictionaries, adding that interest in Kurdish language books is growing day by day.
A year ago, a law passed by the Turkish parliament as part of a so-called "democratization package" legalized education in the Kurdish mother tongue in private schools in Turkey.
Kurdish is among the languages used in news broadcasts by the Anadolu Agency, and by official broadcaster the Turkish Radio and Television Corporation (TRT).
Turkey's most anticipated annual book fair is in its ninth edition, with Hungary as this year's guest of honor.
The theme this year is "100 years of Turkish cinema."