Friday, December 19, 2014

Prof. Alver’s Class: A Tea-Time Sharing

Prof. Alver
Having chosen an irresistible subject from numerous lists of my master courses at Sociology Department in Selcuk University, namely Sociology of Novel, I believed in myself that it would make easier for me in introduction toward Turkish academic fields. It dares me to face challenging of being master student in Turkey in which Turkish language is the first-intriguing step to be completed. Sociology of Novel, notably approaching sociology by literature perspective, will posit my on-going experiences in reading and examining literary works into more academically-addressed discourse in both as writer and reader.

Throughout the cloudy misty morning in early autumn on September 2014, my first-time meeting to Prof. Dr. Köksal Alver happened within which then I called it “tea-time sharing”, tea referring to symbolism of general Turkish culture. Having talked a little bit more about literature either in local or international context, we (or maybe only I) inevitably become closer (each other) through literary touches and sentimental feelings of being such a passionate man of letter; fetched up awhile to take a peep on rack full with books in his small room then took a book titling Çevgen and wagging it before pointing it out in front of me: “it’s one of my works would be a gift for you,” he said then. What first came into my mind was that this lecturer isn’t such any kind of academician, but would be a particular with outstanding academic achievements. I knew nothing at first even the meaning of his book’s title but his attitude spoke generously extensive insights.

Turkish version
Several days later, as a commitment during my course to have at least one of lecturer’s books, I went to book stores around the downtown and leered at social science books while fitting to my note I saved from internet about some books of my lectures’. I found Edebiyat Sosyolojisi to be one of my must-bought listed books. As paying more attention in a series of social science shelf, I eventually gazed insightful books with the author under his name, either as editor or writer such as Kent Sosyolojisi, Sosyolojisi Okumaları Kılavuzu, Mahalle: Mahallenin Toplumsal ve Mekansal Portresi, and Siteril Hayatlar. The last book I could fortunately borrow from my classmate and screen over it is one of Alver’s academically research-based works beside Mahalle: Mahallenin Toplumsal ve Mekansal Portresi. While reading lyrical prose Çevgen which inevitably reminds me to Kahlil Gibran’s literary works such as The Prophet and The Garden of the Prophet, I wonder to know another fiction from Alver’s book by searching on internet which finally found this Saklı Yara. Actually I have an intention of translating his works into Indonesian language if there are any short stories or even a novel written by him.

Prof. Alver’s stance in teaching course on Roman Sociology for master students reveals at least two promising conditions to be taken into consideration. Firstly, as academician who has already conducted researcher and published materials on sociology of literature represented in Edebiyat Sosyolojisi and Sosyolojisi Okumaları Kılavuzu to measure his persistence is profoundly capable to encourage students in enhancing academic challenges of the field; secondly Prof. Alver’s practical field to experience the literary works by writing and publishing a huge of fictions is indubitably incredible stance to interlace a methodological inquiry of sociology of literature and the fiction itself. Meanwhile, through this way it would be either using methodological set of thoughts, meaning academically verified, or experiencing the object--case by case--of the study. For me, sociologists who are conducting research in the literary works is different from that of literary critics which distinguishes Prof. Alver’s position toward literature. As always mentioned in previous lectures, sociologists stand toward reality of social interactions of constructed social structures in the novel about how it influences the social circumstance and how writer’s voices are blown into each character with diverse social settings.

Last but not least, Pro. Alver’s class in teaching Sociology of Novel which is set to be shared spot with friendship atmosphere and equal position regarding to academic discourse within which the students could express and explore the ideas of literary debates awfully freely. In line with this circumstance, the atmosphere in the class will generate freedom of thought even for me as international student who still needs to adjust the conversation in Turkish language. It’s the place where I really love much to share ideas in literature and sociology of culture. Eventually I don’t hesitate to pay a visit for academic reasons or something such killing a time, especially when I’ve decided writing a novel set in Turkey. Getting deeper into Turkish cultures and histories through literature is that the way I have been on and yet has intrigued regarding to Turkish political condition. That’s all about the way down the stream….