Read I quaranta giorni del Mussa Dagh by Franz Werfel Free Online
Book Title: I quaranta giorni del Mussa Dagh|
The author of the book: Franz Werfel
ISBN 13: 9788879722384
Format files: PDF
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Reader ratings: 6.2
The size of the: 415 KB
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Date of issue: March 7th 2007
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Read this book about 40 years ago. I remember that it was a fascinating, though horrifying, story, a real page-turner. Based on the Armenian genocide that occurred in Turkey during World War I. According to Wiki, it was this novel, which Werfel is said to have researched in depth, which revealed the events upon which it is based to the world beyond Turkey. It was published in 1933, 18 years after those events.
The book was banned in Turkey in 1935. Several attempts at making a movie of the book have been made over the years, the most serious one in the '30s by MGM. Each time these have either quietly died, or been abandoned after clamorous criticism by various elements in Turkey. This reaction started with the government of Kemal Ataturk, whose modern secular regime had assumed power in Turkey in 1923. Ataturk was still President when the book was published, and presumably could have just said, "Well that happened under the Ottoman government of that era, Turkey has moved on." But apparently that reaction to the book would have caused enough of a furor among Turkey's population, even supporters of the new regime, that he was unable to make such a statement.
Thus it's one of those novels where you can't be sure where to draw the line between fact and fiction. Presumably most of the characters which people the novel could be guessed to be fictitious, though I certainly have no idea. (See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Fort... for a section that clarifies some of the main parts of the story which are pretty much now known to be essentially true.) And the Turkish government has maintained that the entire Armenian Genocide is a fiction, from the 1930s when the book was published, down to the present day. Wikipedia states ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Armenian... ) that20 countries and 42 U.S. states have adopted resolutions acknowledging the Armenian Genocide as a bona fide historical event. On March 4, 2010, a US congressional panel narrowly voted that the incident was indeed genocide; within minutes the Turkish government issued a statement critical of "this resolution which accuses the Turkish nation of a crime it has not committed".Of course, even after all these years, it is perhaps not surprising that it's difficult for a people to admit this sort of thing, even when no one alive today could have possibly had anything to do with it. For example, I'm not aware that the U.S. government has ever admitted anything similar about the sorry history of the treatment of Native Americans by European settlers which peopled America. This seems like a long story in our past which has many similarities to the much shorter Turkish event; though of course there are lots of differences as well.
revised and expanded review
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Read information about the authorCzech-born poet, playwright, and novelist, whose central themes were religious faith, heroism, and human brotherhood. Franz Werfel's best-known works include The Forty Days of Musa Dagh (1933), a classic historical novel that portrays Armenian resistance to the Turks, and The Song of Bernadette (1941). The latter book had its start when Werfel, a Jew escaping the Nazis, found solace in the pilgrimage town of Lourdes, where St. Bernadette had had visions of the Virgin. Werfel made a promise to "sing the song" of the saint if he ever reached the United States. He died in California in 1945.
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