Nezihe Araz

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(Fatma) Nezihe Araz

She was born on 11 May 1920 in Konya. Her father was Rufat Araz, an Ankara mp who also worked as the President of Ziraat Bank. She graduated from Ankara Girls’ High School in 1941 and the Department of Philosophy in Ankara University in 1946. She started working in academia as the assistant of Behice Boran and left Ankara after Boran’s position in the university ws suspended. She moved to İstanbul to have her PhD but lost her interest in academia. She became a member of Rıfai Dervish Convent.

She published works in many different genres. Her poem collection, Benim Dünyam was published in 1950. She started working as a journalist in the newspaper, Resimli Hayat in the same year. She published essays, interviews and research articles in various journals. Along with research books, she also wrote plays.

After the death of Kenan Rıfai in 1950, she wrote Islam in the Light of 20th century with Samiha Ayverdi, Safiye Erol and Sofi Huri. She wrote the biography of Mehmet the Conquerer in Deruni Tarihi in 1953. She published a research book titled Anadolu Evliyaları in 1959. She collected public gatherings of Anatolian people, the characteristics of Anatolian women’s clothes and accessories and stories about them. She published her research on Middle Anatolian Nomads in a book titled Kırk Pencereli Konak.

In 1993 she published Mustafa Kemal’le 1000 Gün in which she wrote about the relationship of Mustafa Kemal and Latife Hanim. She published Mustafa Kemal’in Ankara’sı (1994) Mustafa Kemal’in Devlet Paşası and Bir Zamanlar O da Çocuktu: Adı Mustafa. She wrote the scripts of the TV series “Hayattan Yapraklar” which was put on stage by Kent Oyuncuları, she also wrote children’s musicals for Kent Oyuncuları. Some of her plays were inclued in the offical list of National Theatre. After 1984, she prepared a women’s show for TV, “Hanımlar Sizin İçin”.

She spent her last years in Maltepe Old People’s Home. She was diagnosed with Alzheimers. She received 2003 Burhan Felek Media Award for her works as a journalist. She died on 26 July 2009. She never got married and had children. In 2012, a documentary, titled “Beyon Words” and directed by Vecihe Büyükaskoy’s granddaughter Jeyda Elsasser, about her.

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