AAPTIS 339 - Turkey: Language, Culture, Society Between East and West
Section: 001
Term: FA 2007
Subject: Arabic, Armenian, Persian, Turkish, and Islamic Studies (AAPTIS)
Department: LSA Middle East Studies
Other Course Info:
Taught in English. A knowledge of Turkish is not required.
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:

An introduction to the culture, language, and society of modern Turkey with a special emphasis on the Turkish position between Europe and the Middle East, and the Turkish project of modernity.

  • Where is this country, Turkey?
  • What kind of people are living there?
  • How do they live, work, think, express themselves?
  • What do they believe?
  • Where do they locate themselves on the map of the world?
  • Are they European or Middle Eastern? Traditional or modern?
  • What does it mean to be modern, anyways?
  • What other issues are there to complicate Turkish identity?

These are the question this course seeks to address in a series of lecture&discussion units on different aspects of modern Turkish social and cultural life, using literary criticism, sociological, and anthropological approaches. Movies, literature, and music will be used to illustrate relevant issues of gender, religion, urban and rural life, history and national myth. This cultural production will give students food for discussion of the overarching theme of modernity and identity in a culture between the Middle East and Europe.

Textbook: Reşat Kasaba and Sibel Bozdoğan, eds., Rethinking Identity and Modernity in Turkey. University of Washington Press, 1997, available at Shaman Drum, State St. Additional material will be made available through a course website. No knowledge of Turkish required!

Evaluation will be based on participation in classroom discussions (20%), a midterm in-class exam (30%), and a final paper (50%). It is expected that students have read the assigned readings before every class, and are able to make informed contributions to the discussion. The midterm will consist of a number of short essay questions. The final paper should be on a topic approved by the instructor, and should involve some independent research in the library or on the web (but with caution!).

AAPTIS 339 - Turkey: Language, Culture, Society Between East and West
Schedule Listing
001 (LEC)
WF 1:00PM - 2:30PM
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