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Cemal Süreya

Turkish writer
The basics
Occupation Poet Writer
Country Turkey
Date of birth Tunceli, Eastern Anatolia Region
Date of death Jan 09, 1990 Istanbul, Istanbul Province, Turkey
Authority Library of congress id ISNI id VIAF id
The details

Cemâl Süreya (1931, Pülümür, Tunceli – 9 January 1990, Istanbul), pen name of Cemâlettin Süreyya Seber, Turkish poet and writer.


Of Zaza origin, after the 1938 Dersim Rebellion, Süreya and his family were displaced to Bilecik, a city in the Marmara Region of Turkey. This had a significant effect on his poems.

He graduated from the Political Sciences Faculty of Ankara University. He was the editor-in-chief of the Papirüs literary magazine. Cemal Süreya is a notable member of the Second New Generation of Turkish poetry, an abstract and postmodern movement created as a backlash against the more popular-based Garip movement. Love, mainly through its erotic character, is a popular theme of Süreya's works. Süreya's poems and articles were published in magazines such as Yeditepe, Yazko, Pazar Postası, Yeni Ulus, Oluşum, Türkiye Yazıları, Politika, Aydınlık, and Somut. He is known to have been a primary influence on the poetry of Sunay Akın. He lost a letter "y" from his pen name – originally Süreyya – because of a lost bet with Turkish poet Sezai Karakoç.

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