'European' Spaces in Emine Sevgi Ozdamar's The Bridge of the Golden Horn (Die Brucke vom Goldenen Horn)

Unalan S.

ZEITSCHRIFT FUR INTERKULTURELLE GERMANISTIK, cilt.9, ss.47-74, 2018 (ESCI İndekslerine Giren Dergi) identifier

  • Cilt numarası: 9 Konu: 1
  • Basım Tarihi: 2018
  • Doi Numarası: 10.14361/zig-2018-090105
  • Sayfa Sayıları: ss.47-74


Spaces and movements between places play an important role in Emine Sevgi Ozdamar's novel The Bridge of the Golden Horn (Die Brucke vom Goldenen Horn, 1998). The title of the novel already contains spatial images like the bridge located in Istanbul. The firstperson narrator and the protagonist of the novel is primarily characterized by her experiences related to her travels between Germany and Turkey, as well as within these two countries. The protagonist, at first, starts her journey to Germany due to her work; however, her actual ambition in life is to become a theater actress. Thus, her journey becomes not only a physical one, but also a means to realize her mental change. With reference to Michel Foucault, certain spaces in the novel can be analysed as "heterotopian spaces" which are heterogeneous and have the competence to bring different spaces together in one place. It is the heterogeneous nature of heterotopian spaces which allows connections to the questions of intercultural literary studies related to topics like identity, culture, difference or border. Within such spaces, as well as through spatial structures, the novel generates familiar images and perceptions of Europe and Germany. This article demonstrates that the novel through spatial structures critically reveals the discursive character of the concept 'Europe' in its German and Turkish contextualizations. While Emine Sevgi Ozdamar's The Bridge of the Golden Horn sets miscellaneous and yet opposing images of 'Europe', it makes clear that the concept of 'Europe' is a multilayered and heterogeneous entity which can be handled from different points of view according to the situational and geographical contexts.