Duygu Asena’s 73rd Birthday, Google Doodle Today

Duygu Asena’s

She was born in Istanbul, Turkey in 1946. Her grandfather was Atatürk's personal secretary. After finishing Kadıköy Private College for Girls, she graduated from Istanbul University with a degree in pedagogy. Then, she worked for two years in the children’s clinic of Haseki Hospital and in the children’s home of the Istanbul University as a pedagogue, Duygu Asena’s 73rd Birthday, Google Doodle Today.

Duygu Asena’s 73rd Birthday, Google Doodle Today


Duygu Asena began writing in 1972 with her first column published in the newspaper "Hürriyet". Between 1976-1978, she was employed as a copywriter in an advertising agency. In 1978, she became editor-in-chief of a publishing house, and in this position she was responsible for the creation of several women’s magazines such as Kadınca, Onyedi, Ev Kadını, Bella, Kim and Negatif.

From the 1980s onwards, Duygu Asena became a leader of movement for women’s rights and status in Turkey with her publications in the media. She wrote about marriage, inequality and violence against women. Previously, she had lost her job because she had fallen in love with a colleague at an associated newspaper. She realized that a Turkish man would never have been fired under similar circumstances.

Her first book “Kadının Adı Yok” ("The Woman Has No Name"), sharply criticizing the oppression of women and marriage without love, was published in 1987, and became a top seller. However, the book was banned at its 40th edition in 1998 by the government because it was found obscene, dangerous for children and undermining marriage. After two years of lawsuits, the ban was lifted, and her book was filmed the same year by director Atıf Yılmaz and featured by Hale Soygazi. Translations of her book were released in Germany and the Netherlands. It became a best seller also in Greece. Her second book “Aslında Aşk da Yok”, which can be considered as the continuation of her first book, was also translated in foreign languages and published abroad. All of her subsequent books became best sellers.

Between 1992 and 1997, she presented a TV program in the state-owned channel TRT 2. Her occupation as a columnist started in the newspaper Milliyet and continued later in Cumhuriyet and Yarın. Duygu Asena played also in three movies "Umut Yarıda Kaldı" ("The Hope is Broken"), "Yarın Cumartesi" ("Tomorrow is Saturday") and "Bay E" ("Mr. E").

Duygu Asena died of brain cancer, which she had been battling for two years in İstanbul's American Hospital. She was buried in Zincirlikuyu Cemetery.

Google Doodle Today, Duygu Asena’s 73rd Birthday

Google Doodle Today, Duygu Asena’s 73rd Birthday


“We’ve come a long way, but there’s still a long way to go,” said Duygu Asena, the Turkish feminist writer, editor, publisher, and TV host whose life and work are celebrated in today’s Doodle by Istanbul-based guest artist Benoît Hamet.

Born in Istanbul on this day in 1946, Asena grew up in a middle-class family, and her grandfather was the personal secretary to Ataturk, the founder of The Republic of Turkey. Initially trained to become a teacher, she went on to become a journalist who advocated for women’s rights in her native land through the power of the written word.

During the 1970s, Asena wrote for the newspapers Hürriyet and Cumhuriyet. She also founded Kadınca, Turkey’s first women’s magazine in 1978. Her voice was considered an inspiration to Turkish women at a time when local social norms limited women’s autonomy over their own lives drastically.

Asena shocked Turkey with her 1987 novel, The Woman has No Name, which became an instant bestseller and was adapted into a successful film a year later.

In later years Asena also worked as an actress and as host of the program Ondan Sonra (After That) on the state-run network TRT-2. Since 2006, the writers’ association, PEN International, has awarded the Duygu Asena Award to promote women fighting for freedom of expression.

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