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Source text - Turkish Salonda dikkatini dağıtan bir şey vardı. Sağa sola başını ağır ağır çevirebiliyordu ancak, afyon yutmuş gibi. Birdenbire kadının elinde su ile önünde bittiğini gördü. Bardak beyaz orta boy bir pasta tabağının tam ortasına oturmuş, ağzı da minik cam bir çay tabağıyla kapatılmıştı. Uzanıp alırken kadınla göz göze geldi, kadın gülümseyerek bir “Buyursunlar paşam,” çekince Rıza’nın dili dolandı, ağzında bir teşekkürü güç bela geveledi.
Kadın şaşırtıcı bir çabuklukla geldiği gibi kaybolmuştu.
Küçük cam tabağı nereye sokacaktı? Acı kahverengi sehpanın üzerine koyunca damlalar oluştu, telaşla sildi hemen; sehpanın köşesinde işlemeli kadife gibi mor bir örtü vardı, onun köşesine bırakmayı denedi, ama hemen kara bir ıslaklık izi orada da kendini belli etti. Kaldırdı; neyse, iz birkaç saniyede kurumuştu. Sonunda beyaz tabağın içine koymayı akıl etti miniği, sehpaya beyazı koyup kaldırarak denedi, iz yoktu. Bütün bu cambazlık sırasında halıya su dökmediğine emin olunca rahat bir nefes aldı, suyu kana kana içti, boş bardağı sallantılı tabak çiftinin üstüne koyduktan sonra ellerini gömleğine sildi, sabırla beklemeye başladı. Göğsünden yükselen hafif buğu odadaki garip kokuya karışıyor, başını döndürüyordu. Pencerelere baktı, hepsi oda lahitmişçesine sıkı sıkıya kapalıydı. Bir tanesini açmak için yerinden doğruldu, sonra tokmakların hayatında hiç görmediği bir türden olduğunu görüp ellemekten korktu.
Excerpt from İç İçe Geçmiş İstanbul Öyküleri [Istanbul—A Novel in Stories], Aziz Gökdemir, Gendaş Kültür (Istanbul, Turkey), 1998: 34-35.
Translation - English Something about the living room was messing with his concentration. His head felt heavy, as if he'd been drugged. Suddenly the woman materialized in front of him, with his glass of water. The glass was placed precisely at the center of a dessert dish doing saucer duty, with a tiny tea saucer perched atop the rim of the glass like a hat. Riza was unable to avoid her eyes as he reached for this elaborate setup—and when she smiled and murmured, "Here you are, young pasha," he was barely able to get a thank-you out.
Then she was gone, just as quickly.
Where oh where was the little saucer supposed to go? He tried the dark brown end table first, but water spots appeared immediately and he wiped these up in a panic; then he noticed a kind of velvety purple cloth draped over the corner and went for it. A black and shockingly instantaneous ring of wetness admonished him there as well. He picked the saucer back up and was relieved to see the ring fade and disappear in a few seconds. He finally thought of putting the little saucer on top of the white dish to protect the table. No mark. He was enormously relieved to see that during all this juggling he hadn't spilled a drop of water on the carpet. He drained the glass in loud gulps, balanced it on the newly buffered but still wobbly little saucer, wiped his hands on his shirt, and waited. He could smell himself; it felt like a faint steam was rising from the opening of his shirt, mingling with the scents of the room, making him woozy. He eyed the windows, all of them shut as if to seal a crypt. He rose from the chair to open one, but was too afraid to touch it once he saw the handles were of a kind he'd never seen in his life.
English to Turkish: Edward Said on Joseph Conrad
Source text - English How do you account for the enduring interest in Joseph Conrad and his work? You often refer to Heart of Darkness.
It's not just Heart of Darkness that I'm interested in. Nostromo, which I think is an equally great novel, published somewhat later, about 1904, is about Latin America. Conrad seems to me to be the most interesting witness to European imperialism. He was certainly in many ways extremely critical of the more rapacious varieties of empire. For example, of the Belgians in the Congo. But more than most people, he understood how insidiously empire infected not just the people who were subjugated by it, but the people who served it. That is to say that the idea of service had in it an illusion that, for example, in the case of the figures in Heart of Darkness, but also especially in Nostromo, could seduce and captivate one, so that in the end it was a form of universal corruption. The trouble with Conrad, in my opinion, and I point this out several times in the course of the book, is that although he was in many ways an anti-imperialist, he also thought imperialism was inevitable. He couldn't understand, as no one else in his time could either, that it was possible for natives to take over the governance of their own destiny. I'm not blaming him retrospectively. He lived in essentially an Eurocentric world. For him, although imperialism was in many cases bad, it was full of abuses, it hurt and harmed people both white and non-white, nevertheless there was no alternative to it. When it came to what is now called liberation, independence, freedom for people from colonialism and imperialism, Conrad simply couldn't get to that. That I think is his almost tragic limitation.
Excerpt from The Pen and the Sword, Edward Said and David Barsamian, Common Courage Press (Monroe, Maine), 1994: 68–69. [The published translation covered pp. 68–70 and 73–76 of this book.]
Translation - Turkish Joseph Conrad ve yapıtlarına olan ilginin kalıcılığını neye dayandırıyorsunuz? Karanlığın Yüreği’ne sık sık değiniyorsunuz.
Conrad’a olan ilgim Karanlığın Yüreği’yle sınırlı değil. 1904 civarında basılan Nostromo, ki kanımca diğerinden aşağı kalmaz bir başyapıttır, Latin Amerika’yı ele alır. Conrad’ı Avrupa emperyalizminin en ilginç tanığı olarak görüyorum. İmparatorlukların yağmacılığına karşı bir çok yönden sert sayabileceğimiz eleştirileri oldu. Örneğin Belçikalıların Kongo’daki icraati konusunda. Ve birçok kişinin algılamasını aşarak, imparator zihniyetinin yalnızca sömürge idaresi altındakileri değil, düzenin uygulayıcılarını da kirlettiğini görebildi Conrad. Şöyle ki, emperyalizmin hizmetkarlığını üstlendiğinizde giderek evrensel bir çürümeye varırsınız; Karanlığın Yüreği ve özellikle Nostromo’daki karakterlerde gördüğümüz bir basiret bağlanması sonucu baştan çıkma ve tutsak haline gelme olgusudur bu. Bence Conrad’da oturmamış olan yan (ki bunu kitapta [Kültür ve Emperyalizm] sık sık dile getiriyorum), birçok yönden emperyalizm karşıtı olmasına karşın, sonuçta emperyalizmin kaçınılmaz olduğu görüşünde saplanıp kalmasıydı. Bir toprağın yerli insanlarının kendi kaderine hakim olma sorumluluğunu devralabileceklerini anlayamıyordu; o zamanlar kimse anlamıyordu ya. Bugünü temel alarak onu suçlamak istemiyorum. Sonuçta Avrupa-merkezli bir dünyada yaşıyordu. Conrad’a göre emperyalizm birçok örnekte kötüdür, eziyetçidir, hem beyaz hem diğer ırkları yaralar, şöyledir böyledir ama alternatifi de yoktur. Bugün insanların sömürgecilik ve emperyalizmden kurtuluşu, bağımsızlığı, halkların özgürlüğü diye adlandırdığımız kavramlara gelince Conrad’ın sesi çıkmıyor. Böyle, neredeyse trajik bir sınırlanma var karşımızda.
Excerpt from "Camus ve Conrad'ın Görünmeyen Yüzleri," Aziz Gökdemir, E Magazine (Istanbul, Turkey), January 2000: S30–S31.
Areas of specialization: Literature, humanities, international development, public/consumer information.
Educational background: Industrial/management engineering and communications.
Fifeen years' experience creating and shaping English and Turkish content for clients in the United States and Turkey, as outlined below.
English: Project Manager at the World Bank's Office of the Publisher, November 2005-present, books managed include Global Monitoring Report 2006.
Reported or wrote on deadline more than 100 articles and columns for The Daily Iowan. Highlights include four-part series on acquaintance rape, feature story on a controversial theory on life's origins on Earth (for which I tracked down Arthur C. Clarke in Sri Lanka and obtained comment), and the INS contingency plan (never implemented) to bring back internment camps during the Gulf War.
Wrote master's thesis on issues related to emerging markets entry and crisis management (using the Bhopal disaster as a case study).
Performed a variety of editorial services (copyediting, substantive editing, rewriting, writing book jacket copy, drafting text, project management and consulting, etc.) in the Washington, D.C. area for clients including the World Bank (Office of the Publisher and other departments), World Wildlife Fund (WWF), U.S. International Trade Commission, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Health Insurance Association of America (now called AHIP - America's Health Insurance Plans), and George Mason University.
Edited the text of one chapter in Navigating Social-Ecological Systems, published by Oxford University Press in 2002.
Managed a year-long publication project for the WWF's Biodiversity Support Program, editing the project's flagship volume and coordinating all aspects of editing, translation, and production.
Turkish: Published essays on current affairs and literature - a dozen in Cumhuriyet, one in Agos, and a dozen in E Magazine (a daily newspaper, a weekly newspaper, and a monthly literary magazine, respectively, all based in Istanbul). Highlights include Sunday feature articles on life in the States, an essay on the transformation of Salkim Hanimin Taneleri from novel to feature film, and a 5,000-word analysis of William Saroyan's body of work viewed through the prism of his 1964 visit to his hometown of Bitlis in Turkey.
Had a collection of short stories published by Gendas Kultur in Istanbul, one of which was selected for broadcast by Deutsche Welle.
Working on a novel and a second collection of short stories for publication.
Translation/Interpretation:Lead simultaneous interpreter for a group of Turkish Cypriot journalists on intensive two-week US media study tour in September 2006; interpreted briefings at US Department of State, the Washington Post, the New York Times, the United Nations, Council on Foreign Relations, Columbia University, International Center for Journalists, among others.
Directed Istanbul-based Aras Publishing's well-reviewed multi-year, six-volume William Saroyan translation project, selecting the material to be translated; liaising with the William Saroyan Foundation and California State University as necessary; supervising, editing, and writing introductions to all volumes; translating stories for the fifth volume; and contributing original material to the sixth volume (four books published, fifth and sixth books forthcoming).
Translated and wrote introduction to excerpts of book-length Edward Said interview, The Pen and the Sword, which was published in E Magazine.
Published "mini-anthology" of Armenian literature in the Turkish magazine, E, translating English excerpts and writing the introduction and short author bios.
Translated a Shell teamwork training workbook for Turkish implementation.
Backstory to bilingual writing and editing experience since 1990: Bilingual education since age 9, most notably 7 years at the private Robert Academy of Istanbul ("Robert College"). Upon arrival in the States, joined staff of one of the few college newspapers in the country doubling as sole morning newspaper for the community, served first as metro reporter and then as columnist (moving from arts and entertainment to op-ed section). Took time off to write a book before joining, as editor, a roster of freelancers working for a Washington, D.C.-area agency providing editorial and desktop publishing services to blue-chip clients as noted above.
Writing and Translation Samples: Please see the Portfolio link above; more will be posted on my Web site soon; in the meantime you can always email me for samples.
References: Also available upon request.
Keywords: literary, international development, editing, copyediting, copywriting, public consumer information, outreach, tourism