Culture

Kazakh poet Zhambyl Zhabayuly remembered in Turkey

Traditional poet, folksinger remembered on his 175th birthday, with speakers describing his works as cultural encyclopedia

Gozde Bayar   | 06.10.2021
Kazakh poet Zhambyl Zhabayuly remembered in Turkey FILE PHOTO - Abzal Saparbekuly, Kazakhstan's Ambassador to Turkey

ANKARA 

Kazakh traditional poet and folksinger Zhambyl Zhabayuly was remembered on his 175th birth anniversary in the Turkish capital Ankara.

The International Zhambyl World Conference, which was held at the Necip Fazil Kisakurek Theatre Hall in the Kecioren district, was attended by Kecioren Mayor Turgut Altinok, Kazakh Ambassador to Turkey Abzal Saparbekuly, and Dusen Kaseinov, secretary-general of TURKSOY (the International Organization of Turkic Culture), among many other literary figures.

Altinok underlined Zhabayuly’s contributions to Turkish-Kazakh culture in his inaugural remarks.

“Zhabayuly is our way, guide, and light. He is a light that takes our history, culture, and civilization from Altai and spread it to Anatolia, and the whole world,” Altınok said, adding that he advised and encouraged heroism.

Kaseinov on the occasion said Zhabayuly, the master of rhetoric, is a figure respected not only by Kazakhs but also by the whole Turkic world.

After Kazahkstan declared its independence 30 years ago, Zhabayuly’s works became widely-read by cognate people.

He emphasized that five values including humanity, heroism, unity, friendship, and valor, which are his message, should be protected.

Ambassador Saparbekuly said Kazakhstan has completed its state and nation building in the last 30 years since achieving independence.

“One of the greatest achievements of our country is the revitalization of its national identity,” he remarked.

Saying that Zhabayuly was an important figure in the globalizing world by promoting common Turkic culture, Saparbekuly dubbed his works like a “cultural encyclopedia” of the Kazakh people.

Baurjan Jakip, vice president of the Writers’ Union of Kazakhstan, hailed Zhabayuly’s poesy and love of poetry slam.

Underlining that rhyme and rhythm in his works create the melody of poems, he said Zhabayuly also benefited from descriptive words, metaphors, symbolism, tropes, allegory, sarcasm, and irony.

Yerlan Jurimbayev, advisor to Kazakhstan’s minister of culture and sports, said Zhabayuly holds an important place in Kazakh literature and culture.

Kazakh people described his words “as sharp as a diamond sword, as clear as a mountain stream.” He is a unique poet who has mastered the secrets of the art of speech and glorified his era through his works, he added.

Yakup Omeroglu, chairman of the Eurasian Authors Union, highlighted the importance of cultural diplomacy in ensuring people-to-people, government-to-government, and politician-to-politician connections, as well as mutual benefits.

One of the most successful embassies that carry out cultural diplomacy in Turkey is the Kazakh embassy, he said, adding that the embassy represents its culture, literature and history in Turkey through intensive programs.

Ulukbek Esdaulet, head of the Writers’ Union of Kazakhstan, said his works were translated into several languages during the Soviet period and published in 160 countries.

Orhan Soylemez, one of the editors of “Zhambyl Zhabayuly on his 175th birthday,” said Zhabayuly always sided with the truth and never deviated from his line.

“Recently, Zhambyl has been called ‘phoenix’, one of the highest ranks that can be given to a folk poet,” he said.

The phoenix is an immortal bird from Greek mythology that regenerates or is reborn on a cyclical basis.

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