A Strange Woman
Leylâ Erbil — 2022
The pioneering debut novel by one of Turkey’s most radical authors, originally published in the 1970s, tells the story of an aspiring intellectual in a complex, modernizing country. Erbil’s groundbreaking coming-of-age novel, nominated for the Nobel upon original release, follows a young woman and aspiring poet in Turkey. Nermin frequents Istanbul’s coffeehouses and underground readings, but is torn between the creative, anarchist youth culture of Turkey’s capital and her parents, members of the old cultural guard who are wary of Nermin’s turn toward secularism. In four parts, A Strange Woman narrates the past and present of a complicated Turkish family through the eyes of each of its members. This rebellious, avant-garde novel tackles sexuality, psychology, and history through the lens of a modernizing 20th-century Turkey. Deep Vellum brings this long-awaited translation of the debut novel by a trailblazing feminist voice to US readers.