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Elif Shafak

28 minutes
First broadcast:
Saturday 04 February 2012

Elif Shafak is an award-winning novelist and the most widely read female author in Turkey.

Her books have been translated into more than 20 languages and several have expressed her fascination with Sufism, the mystical branch of Islam.

In this programme, Elif Shafak talks to Razia Iqbal about her interest in Rumi, the 13th Century Sufi mystic who made it onto the poetry bestseller lists in America in the 20th Century.

Rumi and the mysterious wandering dervish who inspired him, Shams of Tabriz, are both central to her 2010 novel, The Forty Rules of Love, which has sold over half a million copies in Turkey alone.

The programme also explores Elif Shafak’s self-perception as a Turkish writer and Muslim woman moving between cultures, and the popularity of Sufism in modern-day Turkey and the Western world.

Photo credit: Muammer Yanmaz


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