Əlifba. A Cultural alphabet: Nargis and TAIB joint project

Nargis magazine and Association of Azerbaijani Businessmen in Turkey (TAIB) published the illustrated “Alifba. A Cultural alphabet” edition. The presentation took place in Istanbul, in Çırağan Palace Kempinski Hotel.

In 1864, the founder of realism in Azerbaijani literature, writer Mirza Fatali Akhundov, suggested reforming the Azerbaijani language and replacing the Arab ligature with Latin graphics. In search for support, he went to Istanbul and presented the draft of the new Azerbaijani alphabet there. 155 years later the presentation of the first illustrated alphabet of Azerbaijani took place in Istanbul.

The editor-in-chief of Nargis magazine, Ulviya Makhmudova, and chairman of TAIB, Mekhti Nagiyev, welcomed their dear guests at the gala – statesmen of Azerbaijan and Turkey, representatives of culture and outstanding persons. Among them were Mesim Hajiyev, Xezer Ibrahim, Demet Sabanchi Chetindogan, Emin Hitay, Ishil Rejber, Fatih Yurek, Ajlan-Selda Adjar, Dilek Ertek, Gokche Atuk, Erdal-Belkis Aksoy, Sevgi Aksoy, Rashit Bagzibagli, Ezra and Tuba Chetin, Ozlem Kaymaz, Tara Devries, Ayshegul-Hakan Kodal, Arzu Kaprol, Salih and Efe Bezji, Tuncay Ashchi, Nergis Kumbasar, Emine Ersan, Murat Ektiren, Gokhan Aydin, Tugche Eyilik and Tulin Kartoz.

Guests enjoyed exquisite dishes of Azerbaijan cuisine accompanied by the Azerbaijani jazz which enriched the world history of jazz so deeply.

The evening was led by famous TV host Nargiz Jalilova and popular actor Yetkin Dikinjiler. Guests met folk and jazz music of Azerbaijan with enthusiasm. Music was performed by a winner of a competition among pianists at the Montreux Jazz Festival 2009, owner of the state award "Zirva" for 2010, honored artist of Azerbaijan Isfar Sarabski, Elnur Guseynov and honored artist of Azerbaijan Sevda Alekperzade.

Editor-in-chief of Nargis magazine Ulviya Makhmudova admitted that she feels proud and satisfied that the “Alifba. A Cultural Alphabet” book presentation took place in Istanbul where the first foundation of the Azerbaijani alphabet was once built. She said: "The book “Alifba. A Cultural Alphabet” is a guide to thirty-two realities of the Azerbaijani culture. It provides information about architectural monuments, the works of art, historical traditions and the folklore characters of our country. Each of 32 letters of the Azerbaijani alphabet is followed by the brief information in four languages – Azerbaijani, Turkish, English and Russian. At first sight the narrative style can seem very simple, but behind each single letter there is a serious research of our literature and art figures".


The chairman of recently founded Association of the Azerbaijani businessmen in Turkey (TAIB) Mekhti Naghiyev expressed satisfaction from supporting the edition of this invaluable book which will serve for preservation and transfer of knowledge about the Azerbaijani culture to future generations. On behalf of TAIB he assured that the organization run by him, being one of support of the steady bridge of friendship between Azerbaijan and Turkey, is very glad to be in charge of organizing this solemn event.

He said: "I express deep gratitude on behalf of our organization and from myself personally to dear heads and employees of an editorial board of Nargis magazine for their dedicated work enclosed in the edition of this matchless book which discloses all value of the Azerbaijani alphabet before generations of readers. The value of one of the leading magazines of Azerbaijan – Nargis – lies in its philosophy. The soul and brain of this philosophy, of course, is Nargiz Pashayeva. We are proud of the fact that the creative magazine of international level and recognition, successfully combining the cultures of East and West is issued in our homeland". 

The idea of this book belongs to the editor-in-chief of the Nargis magazine Ulviya Makhmudova, and man-made illustrations with use of flowers of a national tricolor were created by the Israeli artist Shira Barzilai.

Photo by Parviz Gasimzade

Video by Ruslan Gorbunov