Orham Pamuk, The Museum of Innocence, 2008.

The author is the 2006 Literature Nobel Prize winner. In his 8th novel The Museum Innocence Pamuk explores life in Istanbul during the 70s and 80s with particular details from the perspective of the son of a wealthy industrialist. The book vividly portraits the social and moral conflicts of a society, even being ruled by a secular system that broke with Islamic law, which was torn between rigid traditions and the desire to emulate the West. Pamuk emphasizes these tensions through love and pre-marital sex. The book focuses on an obsessive relationship full of pains and difficulties, which for the western readers today might not be easy to understand. His descriptions of spaces including homes, streets and restaurants, as well as feelings of love, shame, greed, hope and despair in  situations such as parties and outings full of credible conversations with the most diverse topics ranging from filmmaking to business with lots of social gossips. All these made this book a psychological trip to the mind of an addict lover, as well as a guide to Turkey’s capital.

Related article: Memory Lane by Maya Jaggi, published in The Financial Times, is more of a review of the physical museum with the same name of the novel which was founded by Pamuk in a townhouse in Istanbul’s antiques district to host the objects described in the novel which are associated with its main characters.


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