A Turkish publisher on trial for publishing a classic erotic novel by French writer Guilliame Apollinaire has been recognised with a special award by the Geneva-based International Publishers Association.
Irfan Sanci, owner of publishing house Sel, is being prosecuted under article 226 of the Turkish penal code, an anti-obscenity law, for publishing a translation of Apollinaire's Les exploits d'un jeune Don Juan (The Exploits of a Young Don Juan). The novel, first published in 1911, features the escapades of a 15-year-old hero who impregnates three women, one of them his own aunt.
Sanci is due to receive his award from the IPA's Freedom to Publish committee on November 2nd at the Istanbul TÜYAP book fair, with his next court hearing currently scheduled for the morning of the same date.
Sanci said of his situation: "I am being punished in my own country but am also getting an international award. This is tragic. Everything aside, Apollinare's book, which is a part of the world's cultural heritage, is being tried for hurting the public's sense of shame."
-my thoughts on this: i love that the publisher is also getting an award for publishing this book.