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Turkish Culture, Language

Turkish as a Foreign Language

Golden Horn, IstanbulThis is a guest post by my friend Ozge Seckin Polat who is an EFL instructor at university in Istanbul and currently located in Arizona. She has M.A. in Teaching Turkish as a Foreign Language (TAFL) and specializes in that field. You can follow her colorful blog here and Twitter account right here.

The word “globalization”, defined as the removal of borders among countries, has led people from different nations to communicate with each other. As a result of this touch, they have begun to show an interest in each other’s languges and cultures. Moreover, learning at least one foreign language has gained importance. For instance, the European Union adopting the concepts of “multilingualism and multiculturalism” encourages its citizens to learn new languages.

Turkish is one of these languages which has been learnt popularly in recent decades -though it dates back to ancient times-. In Turkey and also in other countries, it is taught at universities or some private courses for different reasons. For example, in Turkey the students are generally from Europe and neighbouring countries. They come to Turkey for their higher education, and before starting their departments they learn Turkish in prep classes at their universities. Moreover, some learners come to live in Turkey for marriage, bussiness etc. and this becomes their reason to learn it.

Another geography that Turkish is actively taught in as a foreign languge is the United States. Being quite far from the country where it is spoken, specifically I mean Arizona, have you ever wondered why people learn Turkish there? This week, having a wonderful experience of teaching Turkish at the University of Arizona, I asked the students about their reasons for learning Turkish as part of a research I’m currently studying on. Firstly, the most important factor is the department of Middle Eastern Studies. Most of the students in the Turkish classroom are the member of this department and because of their future studies they want to focus on, they need to visit Turkey, do research there, and on account of that they learn Turkish. One of the students whose father is Turkmen wants to learn it beause many people in the family speak the language. On the other hand, one is learning it since the government is hiring Turkish speaking diplomats. Apart from these, there are a few students who are personally interested in Turkish culture without any reasons in terms of research or a job opportunity.

As an individual speaking Turkish natively, and also as a researcher of Turkish as a foreign language, I got really excited by the results, and when I turn back to my job as an English instructor in Turkey, I have some good news for my students who have some difficulties in learning English and who are always saying “offf hocam yaa! Why do we have to learn their language and why aren’ t they learning ours??”

Routledge The Routledge Intermediate Turkish Reader: Political and Cultural Articles (Routledge Modern Language Readers)
Book (Routledge)


by dawggirl1

All the same, there is nothing like the testimony of the founder of the P.L.O. himself, Ahmed Shukari. Already in 1956 he proclaimed from the podium of the U.N., as the Arab League's ambassador there, that "such a creature as Palestine does not exist at all. This land is nothing but the southern portion of Greater Syria…"
And if Ahmed Shukari says that Palestine does not exist at all, the logical inference is that "Palestinians" do not exist at all either. That same Shukari was born of a Turkish mother in Lebanon, was himself a Jordanian lawyer, served as the ambassador of Syria to the U

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Turkey-UAE tourism boost  — Travel Daily Media
Turkey retains its position as a popular holiday destinations for UAE residents. In 2013, over 50,000 UAE residents visited Turkey, a 50 % increase from 2012.


Are germans this racist??

I really like Germany, I never visited but I plan to visit.. But then I saw this "anti-Muslim" or anti-Islam rally they did and I'm Muslim and I think that's kinda racist :\ then today I was talking about Germany with my friends and one of my friend said that her aunt used to live there but came back because his son got beaten up and kept on getting nagged by germans because he was Muslim and his not white her aunt said that they were really racist ppl... And also I have 3 german friends I invited 2 of them to my house with my other friend (she's black) and the whole time they were in…

As a German I can only give you the answer of a German. - But what you describe does actually shock me and does not surprise me (for the muslim part) at the same time.

I can only say that it really depends on where you live and what kind of people are around you. And that goes both ways. How Germans in some places treat muslims (if they are German or not does not matter) and how muslims treat Germans (in this case it's mostly turkish muslims).

I can only tell you what I know; I live in a place where due to several circumstances a lot (!) muslims from turkey (I point out that…

How do most Germans today view foreigners living in Germany?

What do most Germans think about the various foreigners who live in Germany today? Do most Germans have no problem with them and try to befriend them and get along with them? Or is there a lot of tension and do many Germans think that Germany should only be for Germans?

I worked with a company where we had Turkish, Spanish, Korean, British people, so I'm pretty biased. We never had a problem working together and getting along. Some Germans, however, seem to have a problem with foreigners; I call it xenophobia. That's quite a normal reaction when you're afraid of something or somebody strange. And there's the media, like our BILD-Zeitung, and the Turkish Hürriyet. Interesting to know, maybe, that they both have the same owner.

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