Keywords: Turgut Uyar, philosophy, poetry, catharsis, heroism


In this article, Turgut Uyar’s –who is one of the pioneering poets of “İkinci Yeni”– poem entitled “Bir Barbar Kendin Tartar Bir Barbar Aşağlarda,” will be examined in the light of philosophical concepts. Even though Uyar’s poetry is usually evaluated as “hopeless” or “unhappy”, indeed it has a wider emotional catalogue. Uyar’s poetry captures his own era from different angles. In order to perceive his poetry, one has to recourse philosophical concepts. In this context, two main themes in this poem are examined. The first of these is engaging with notion of “catharsis” as one of the basic characteristics of art through the eyes of philosophy. The second one is the “ideology of heroism” which is frequently criticized by philosophers. Uyar, on the one hand, poetizes a person who lives in conflict with the values of his own era, trying to purify himself. That purification is an indispensable element of self consciousness process as the first imperative of philosophy. As known, conflicts between social and ethic values lead to the birth of tragic heroes. The second theme that Uyar discusses in this poem relates to this topic directly. The poet undermines the figure of “hero” in general by criticizing the tendecy of creating a hero from that conflict. Consequently, this article tries to show how Uyar dealt with the two primordial issues of history of humanity by a philosophical approach.