Discipline: Literature

Demetra Vaka

Discipline: Literature
MacDowell Fellowships: 1926, 1927
Demetra Vaka (1877-1946) was born on the island of Bouyouk Ada, Sea of Marmora. Her early life was passed in close touch with the Turkish people. She ran away from home to escape an arranged marriage, and came to the United States with the family of a relative. She joined the staff of the Greek newspaper Atlantis in New York City, but after six months of this, she gave up journalism and became a teacher of French at the Comstock School, where she remained until 1903, except for a brief interval in 1901 when she returned to Turkey for a visit. In 1904 she was married to Kenneth Brown, novelist, and soon began to write. Her second book, Haremlik, published in 1909, commanded wide attention. It consisted of 10 studies of Turkish women. A Child of the Orient (1914) relates the story of the author's own childhood.



Demetra Vaka worked in the Cheney studio.

Cheney Studio was given to MacDowell by Mrs. Benjamin P. Cheney and Mrs. Karl Kauffman. Like Barnard Studio, Cheney is a low, broadly massed bungalow. Sited on a steep westward slope, its porches are supported on wooden posts and fieldstone with lattices. Although it still retains its appealing character, the original design of the shingled building…

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