Insulting biography language causes uproar in Istanbul
Hürriyet PhotoA series of 15 books containing the biographies of important scientists and historical names such as Thomas Edison, Albert Einstein, and Charlie Chaplin has caused eyebrows to raise after being distributed to middle class students in Istanbul’s Maltepe district by a social aid and solidarity foundation, daily Radikal reported today.
In the biography series, published by Büyük Adım Publications, hate speech and insulting words are allegedly used while telling the lives of historical names.
Einstein was reportedly described as a dirty and untidy person, referring to his religion in the book.
“[Einstein] showered once a month and liked to eat soup. (Sad enough, gestapos put Jewish people into cookers and made soup of them),” one of the books reportedly says.
“Charlie Chaplin was born in London,” another book says of the actor. “His father was penniless, as was his mother. People who get rich change their wives or buy a new car in America; Chaplin did both, bought beautiful cars and spent his time with attractive women.”
Edison was "trying to make hay while the sun shines," another book says.
The 110-page books were reportedly prepared by a commission and editor at the publisher, and have no official author.
The head of the Maltepe District Education Department, Faik Kaptan, said he was not aware of the books' content, but the department had previously approved the move before they were handed to students.
An official from Eğitim Sen (the Education and Teachers' Union) has said a complaint will be filed against the Maltepe Governorship and District Education Department, asking for the withdrawal of the books.