The Playful Freedom Of Laughing
Laughter in Traditional and Contemporary Turkish Drama
The act of laughing in Turkish theater can be discussed within the framework of a vibrant and still-powerfull tradition (Ortaoyunu) in order to arrive at the right questions. The best way to comprehend ourselves is to see what we laugh at and why.

The act of laughter provides a space within which we can see what it says about ourselves and its possibilities to say something about ourselves and thus enables us to observe our ways of confrontation with reality. A study of the laughable in drama gives us some clues about our eagerness to laugh.
Whom and what we laugh at? How does drama make us laugh?

(This title is currently only available in Turkish.)


Foreword, 7
1. “Just to laugh a little…” (Ortaoyunu), 11
2. Light-hearted irony from myth to fairytale, 16
Deli Dumrul (Dumrul the Crazy), 26
Midas’ın Kulakları (The Ears of Midas), 35
3. The bitter humor of to be and appear to be, 39
Keşanlı Ali Destanı (The Ballad of Ali of Keşan), 41
Ayışığında Şamata (Hullabaloo in Moonlight), 45
Gözlerimi Kaparım Vazifemi Yaparım (I Just Close My Eyes and Do My Duty), 52
Eşeğin Gölgesi (Shadow of the Donkey), 57
4. Violence as the object of laughter, 61
4.1 The heavy-hearted irony of Burak, 64
Sahibinin Sesi (His Master’s Voice), 66
İşte Baş İşte Gövde İşte Kanatlar, (Here’s the Head, Here is the Body, Here are the Wings), 69
4.2. The tragic farce of the human-being as a puppet, 79
Kahvede Şenlik Var (Festivity in the coffeehouse), 85
Sonsuzluk Kitabevi (Eternity Bookstore), 88
4.3. The parody of social life, 90
Ölüler Konuşmak İsterler (The Dead Want to Talk), 90
5. The bittersweet play of the outcasts, 95
Oyunlarla Yaşayanlar (Those that Live with Plays), 95
6. A fantasy of old-age, 106
Hadi Öldürsene Canikom (C’mon sweetie, kill me ), 106
7. Irony, Mask and Audience, 112
Afterword or the power of Laughter, 117
Bibliography, 120
General bibliography, 120
    Mitos-Boyut Yayınları, İstanbul