Monthly Archives: March 2016

On trial for pacifism

This is about the 1918 trial of American radical political cartoonist Art Young and others for conspiracy and interfering with enlistment. Most of the article is a quotation of Young’s own words. The words provide some perspective on today’s struggle for freedom of speech.

Capitalism, Art Young, private collection (reproduced in Harper's, Jan 2016, p. 64)

Capitalism, Art Young, private collection (reproduced in Harper’s, Jan 2016, p. 64)

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Academic Freedom

Yesterday (March 24, 2016) was the first day of the sixth Models and Groups Istanbul meeting. There were participants from the Middle East, Europe, and America. Kıvanç Ersoy was to speak about his own mathematics. He could not speak, because he was in prison. He, Esra Mungan, and Muzaffer Kaya were in prison, because the three of them had publicly insisted that the government of Turkey make peace in the southeast of the country. Absurd, but true. Continue reading

Kıvanç fêted in absentia

The birthday of one of our departmental colleagues was celebrated today, March 22, 2016. We were a day late, and the principal was away. His parents were present, but he himself had been imprisoned without bail since March 14.

MSGSÜ garden, 2016.03.22

The charge against Kıvanç and two others is spreading terrorist propaganda, as reported by Academic Freedom Monitor, Human Rights Watch and Nature. Continue reading

Early Tulips

Emirgan Korusu, 2016.03.12

Ayşe was still in Ankara, but I had seen rumors on Twitter that tulips were already blooming in Emirgan Korusu. The bulbs were being dowsed with ice water, lest the flowers be overblown for the Tulip Festival in April. Anyway, I wanted to get away from the crowds of Şişli and Beyoğlu. The morning was mostly sunny. Thus on Saturday, March 12, 2016, I headed out to Emirgan, repeating the trip that we had made the previous April. Continue reading

Art on Büyükada

This is about a weekend in the islands, and contemporary art.

The Fourteenth Istanbul Biennial (September 5 to November 1, 2015) had exhibits or installations all over Istanbul, and several of these were on Büyükada, the Big Island, which is Πρίγκηπος in Greek. The Big Island is the last of the four islands visited by the ferry from the mainland. For easier access, Ayşe and I stayed on the second island, Burgazada, the night of Friday, October 23, 2015. We caught the ferry from there to Büyükada on Saturday morning. We visited all of the venues of the Biennial on the island. Illustrating this article are photographs from some of these venues. Continue reading