Friday, April 10, 2015

Betty Adcock is featured poet at Nâzim Hikmet Festival honoring Russian poet Anna Akhmatova

The Seventh Annual Nâzim Hikmet Poetry Festival will be held on April 26, 2015 from 1-6 p.m. at the Page-Walker Art and History Center in Cary, North Carolina. The Festival is free and open to the public.

This year, the Festival honors Russian poet, Anna Akhmatova, and her poetry. Speakers will be Stanislav Shvabrin, Assistant Professor and Irene Masing-Delic, Professor in the Department of Germanic and Slavic Languages and Literatures at UNC-Chapel Hill.
Betty Adcock is the invited poet for the Festival.  The winners of the annual poetry competition, a major component of the Festival, have also been invited to read their poems during the Festival. Their poems will be published in the Festival book and on the Festival website.

As many as a thousand entries are received each year. The 2015 winners, in alphabetical order, are Leila Chatti, North Carolina; Lois Harrod, New Jersey; Mimi Herman, North Carolina; Emily Jaeger, Massachusetts; Edison Jennings, Virginia; Anne Whitehouse, New York; and Andy Young, Louisiana. Honorable Mentions: Jane K. Andrews, North Carolina; Mary E. Parker, North Carolina; and Eric M. Saye, Georgia.

Judges for the competition were Joseph Bathanti, Professor, Appalachian State University; Greg Dawes, Distinguished Professor, NC State
University; Erdag Goknar, Associate Professor, Duke University; Terry Hummer, Professor, Arizona State University, and Jaki Shelton-Green, Poet and NC Literary Hall of Fame Inductee.
The festival is named for Nâzim Hikmet Ran, a Turkish poet, playwright, novelist, screenwriter, director and memoirist whose poetry has been translated into more than fifty languages.

Described as a “romantic communist” and “romantic revolutionary”, he was repeatedly arrested for his political beliefs and spent much of his adult life in prison or in exile. In 1949, Pablo Picasso, Paul Robeson, and Jean-Paul Sartre, among others, campaigned for his release. After a long hunger strike, during which officials denied him the medical treatment urged by his doctors, he was finally released by a new government. He died in Moscow in 1963 at the age of sixty-one.

The Festival is organized by the American Turkish Foundation of North Carolina (ATA-NC). It is made possible by a major grant from the Turkish Cultural Foundation and is hosted and sponsored by the Town of Cary, Duke University and the North Carolina Poetry Society. (

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