Near Eastern Languages & Cultures
| N305 Cultural History of Turkey (3cr)
N305 | 3025 | Silay
N305/N695 Cultural History of Turkey (3cr/3cr)
Time and Day: 4:00p-5:15p TR
Prof. Kemal Silay
This course is designed to introduce undergraduate students with little or no background in
Turkish studies to the rich and varied cultures of Turkey, from Ottoman times to the present.
After briefly touching upon the general history of the Anatolian "Turks," we will study the
social, economic and political structures of Ottoman and Turkish Anatolia, the language(s), the
literature(s) and the many artistic traditions of the Anatolian peoples. How different was the
literary language of the Ottoman elite from the language which has been spoken by the people of
Anatolia for centuries? What was the social status of Turkish women during the Ottoman
Empire? What changes took place after the emergence of Modern Turkey? Along with these
questions, we will deal with other significant topics, such as literacy/illiteracy in Turkish society;
the secular enterprise of Kemal Ataturk; the revival of Islamic fundamentalism; Turkish
educational institutions; the emergence of Kurdish nationalism, and how all of these are reflected
in the artistic creations of the Turkish people. In addition to the assigned readings, Turkish films
and other visual materials will be used to familiarize students with the historical, artistic and
political structure of Anatolian/Turkish society.
The Reader prepared by the instructor.
An Anthology of Turkish Literature, Edited by Kemal Silay (1996).
Attendance and class participation: 10%
Final Exam: 40%