Turkish Cultural Center Queens
Foreign Films / Turkish Film - Separation
Continued / Sunnyside / December 3, 2010 / Queens Buzz. The film’s title, Separation, has many meanings that are revealed as the story unfolds. There’s the separation between the young scribe and the ambassador following the ambassador’s death. Dede describes this separation as no different than the separation one experiences from the sun at the end of the day. Then there’s the separation that describes the void between the good doctor and the young maiden. They both quietly long for one another. And yet, due to the their positions and the customs of the time, they are unable to speak about their feelings to one another. Dede tells us that, “Unspoken love is the most illuminating.” The photo to your right was taken from the Turkish movie Separation.
Eventually, war breaks out and the good doctor is sent to Egypt. The fair maiden is given her freedom by the empress and we are left guessing whether the two lovers ever meet again. Poetic verses, filled with meaning, are woven into the scenes of the movie. Philosophy, the arts, history and diplomacy were also incorporated into the story, leaving one with much to think about after the movie ended.
The film had the rhythm, exquisite look and the nuanced feel of a 1930’s or 1940’s American movie. The costumes were excellent, the writing superb, the cinematography illuminating and the acting a worthy complement to the entire production. So as not to set the wrong expectation, this is just one example of their monthly movies. They also feature action / thrillers which are likely more similar to James Bond than one written by Jane Austen. The photo above shows the empress's court.
Turkish History - Byzantine & Ottoman Empires
The Turks ruled the Eastern branch of the Roman Empire starting around 400 AD. At the time the eastern branch of the Roman Empire was called Byzantium or the Byzantine Empire. Between 1200 and 1300 it became the Ottoman Empire, which gasped its last breath during World War I. During that time Constantinople, which is modern day Istanbul, and the surrounding area [Turkey] was an influential seat of culture and learning. Hence it’s likely one can learn a great deal from studying Turkish culture. The photo to your left shows modern day Istanbul, crossroads between Europe and the Middle East.
Turkish Cultural Center - Sunnyside & Queens NY
Following the film I had an opportunity to converse with Oguztan Turan who is the president of the Turkish Cultural Center in Queens. He informed me that the purpose of the center is to explore Turkish culture within the framework of being an American citizen.