Home Page of HÜLYA N. YILMAZ
Welcome to my homepage! My name is Hülya YILMAZ. I was born and raised in Ankara, Turkey and have been living in the United States since the winter of 1980. I came to the States to pursue my doctoral degree in German Studies with the goal to return and serve in my home country but stayed on after earning my Ph.D. in Germanic Languages and Literatures and establishing my academic career within the same field. I hold the position of Senior Lecturer in German, Undergraduate Program Academic Advisor and Language Program Director at Penn State University where I teach the language, culture, and literature of Germany, including the literature of immigrants. I am also Instructor of Comparative Literature Studies where I teach "Literature, Gender Consciousness, and Islam," a Women and World Literature course every Spring semester. My dissertation as well as a book I had written on the influence of the Islamic East upon the 19th and 20th-century German literature through Anatolian Sufism leads me also to the field of comparative literature studies. Hence, I also taught and currently teach literature reflective of gender relations within the Islamic context, against the backlash of Western conceptualizations of Islam and Moslem women.
Teaching and research are my true hobbies, as far as my personal life is concerned but I do have other favorite pass-time activities, though my free time is extremely restricted and they still directly relate to my profession. I like to read, write, primarily poetry, and translate literary works using my knowledge in three languages, namely, Turkish, German and English. I wrote a short story as a teenager and numerous poems in Turkish, never had the story published. One of my poems, however, was published in a popular magazine when I was very young. Traveling especially for non-business reasons is an activity I enjoy tremendously but unfortunately lack the time to arrive at destinations of my desire that include the majority of the Turkish and the American landscape, Venice, Florence, and Rome, to name only a few. Leading a crosscultural existence on a personal level and having dealt and continuing to deal with diasporic literature in my profession may have prompted me to assume my yet most significant hobby, namely, to continually develop and advance upon perspectives through which to bridge the East with the West, thus imitating in my personal life my primary research objective of arriving at a synthesis between these two seemingly disparate realms. At this point I believe it would be most appropriate to conclude with a quote from Mevlana Celaleddin Rumi, the world-renowned 13th-century Anatolian mystic with the hope that one such bridge will always be within reach for everyone.
Come, come again, whoever you are, come!