Kadın şairde kadın : Şükufe Nihal'in şiirleri
Yeşilyurt Kayhan, Türkan
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Şukûfe Nihal (1896-1973) published her works in an era of ongoing significant social changes during Turkey’s modernization period (1919-1960). She took active role in many women’s societies as the “new woman” of the westernized, secular, and new nation-state based on the nationalist model; wrote articles on women’s rights in newspapers and magazines; gave the main roles to heroines in her stories and novels, and strived to make “women’s voice” heard in her poetry. Şukûfe Nihal, exalted the hard working and exploited “Anatolian woman” against the “indifferent woman” who is insensitive towards social issues, concerning herself only with adornment. In her poetry, she problematizes herself as an upper class and educated suburban woman. However, her poetry does not involve any discourse in the name of the “suburban woman.” A “woman’s voice” is heard, but its owner cannot experience her love freely because of familial and social pressures. Şukûfe Nihal approached woman within the patriarchal sexual stereotype, in line with the widely acknowledged attitude by the intellectuals of her time. On the one hand, she defended the working and education rights for women, and wanted them to be visible in the public sphere. On the other hand, she expected her to return to the domestic sphere to carry out her primary tasks such as “motherhood,” “wifehood,” and “housekeeping”. Within this dilemma, the “traditional identity” and “modern identity” of this “Daughter of the Republic” without a feminist point of view, clashed. In her poetry, a “woman’s voice,” trapped and depressed by this clash between tradition and modernity, is heard. Even though traces of Tevfik Fikret and Beş Hececiler can be detected here and there, Şukûfe Nihal has succeeded in articulating the woman’s voice in her poetry, which bears the characteristics of feminine archetypes of mythological goddesses, and of “woman’s gothic”.
KeywordsDaughter of the Republic
Feminist point of view
Goddesses of mythology