Graphic Biography Announcement: ERDOĞAN is a Timely and Essential Graphic Biography of Turkey’s Authoritarian President by Exiled Journalist Can Dündar and Political Cartoonist Anwar!

One of the world’s most divisive and controversial leaders, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has ruled over Turkey as either prime minister or president since 2003. On May 28, despite predictions he would lose, Erdoğan was reelected president for another five-year term as the country continues to unravel as a result of economic crises, international conflicts, and the devastating earthquake in February. This fall, Arsenal Pulp Press is publishing ERDOĞAN: A Graphic Biography — The Rise of Turkey’s Modern Autocrat, a comprehensive graphic biography of the authoritarian president of Turkey. Written by author Can Dündar, a Turkish journalist and contributor to the Washington Post now living in exile in Berlin, and featuring compelling artwork by Egyptian Sudanese comic artist Anwar, ERDOĞAN provides a critical and dramatic context for understanding the origins of Turkey’s most powerful man.

Here’s the exclusive trailer for the book-

Author Can Dündar, a Turkish journalist and contributor to the Washington Post now living in exile in Berlin, spent several years researching this book. In 2015 he was arrested when his newspaper published photos of Turkey’s state intelligence sending weapons to ISIS in Syria; in 2020 he was sentenced in absentia by Turkish courts to twenty-seven years in prison for espionage and aiding an armed terrorist organization. 

“We want to tell Erdoğan’s story in an untold way,” says Can Dündar. “Everything in this book is fact checked, precise, and thoroughly documented. The graphic novel format has become a new form of journalism and this book illuminates how Erdoğan rose to power to become one of the most powerful leaders in the world.”  

Situated at the crossroads between Europe and Asia with a population of eighty-four million, Turkey is a growing economic powerhouse with a geopolitically strategic location. As its leader, the Islamic, conservative Erdoğan has had a polarizing effect on the country’s populace; some applaud his economic and political reforms, while others decry his autocratic, iron-fisted rule, which has included the jailing of opponents, the crushing of free speech and the rights of LGBTQ+ people and others, and an ongoing war waged against the country’s Kurdish minority. From Erdogan’s youth as a budding soccer player to his years spent navigating Turkey’s political landscape — including the founding of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) in 2001 — this graphic biography sheds crucial light on Erdogan’s convictions and contradictions as a demagogue for whom democracy has been merely a means to power.

The winner of the 2022 Atomium Comic Strip Prize, ERDOĞAN was originally published in Turkish and German as Erdoğan by German nonprofit Correctiv, as well as in French, Italian and Arabic, and features artwork by Egyptian Sudanese comic artist Anwar. The Turkish version of the text was not allowed to be published in Turkey.

“We are not trying to demonize him in any way,” said Anwar. “We are trying to depict his personality and the choices he has made.”

ERDOĞAN: A Graphic Biography — The Rise of Turkey’s Modern Autocrat represents an opportunity to show how Erdoğan’s rise to power is connected to his actions as president,” said Arsenal Pulp Press publisher Brian Lam. “He is a cunning politician who has the ear of both Russia and the West while at the same time is contending with serious domestic issues and unrest. It’s a story that will continue to unfold in the days and months to come.”

ERDOĞAN: A Graphic Biography — The Rise of Turkey’s Modern Autocrat will be published by Arsenal Pulp Press on October 3, 2023.

You can pre order a copy here –


Can Dündar is a Turkish journalist and documentary filmmaker and the former editor-in-chief of the oldest Turkish newspaper Cumhuriyet. One of the most prominent figures in Turkish media, Dündar is the 2016 recipient of the Committee to Protect Journalists International Press Freedom Award in the US. He has been living in exile in Berlin since June 2016.


Anwar is an Egyptian Sudanese comic artist and political cartoonist. He was among the new wave of young political cartoonists who emerged in Egypt in the final years of former dictator Hosni Mubarak. The Egyptian revolution that broke out in 2011 was central to Anwar’s development as an artist. After the retraction of political reforms in Egypt in 2011, Anwar was arrested in 2019 and deported. He now lives in Berlin.


Arsenal Pulp Press is a book publisher in Vancouver, Canada, with over 400 titles in print, which include graphic novels and non-fiction, literary fiction and non-fiction, books on social issues, gender studies, LGBTQ2S+ and BIPOC literature, cookbooks, alternative crafts, visual arts, and books in translation. Arsenal is interested in literature that engages and challenges readers, and asks probing questions about the world around us.

all art- Arsenal Pulp Press

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