The Turkish Language Reform: A Catastrophic Success

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9780199256693: The Turkish Language Reform: A Catastrophic Success

This is the first full account of the transformation of Ottoman Turkish into Modern Turkish. It is based on the author's knowledge and experience of the language, history, and people of Turkey. The transformation of the Turkish language is probably the most thorough-going piece of linguistic engineering in history. Its prelude came in 1928, when the Arabo-Persian alphabet was outlawed and replaced by the Latin alphabet. It began in earnest in 1930 when Ataturk declared:

'Turkish is one of the richest of languages. It needs only to be used with discrimination. The Turkish nation, which is well able to protect its territory and its sublime independence, must also liberate its language from the yoke of foreign languages.'

All Arabic and Persian vocabulary was replaced forthwith by words collected from popular speech, resurrected from ancient texts, or coined from native roots and suffixes. The snag - identified by the author as one element in the catastrophic aspect of the reform - was that when these sources failed to provide the needed words, the reformers simply invented them. The reform was central to the young republic's aspiration to be western and secular, but it did not please those who remained wedded to their mother tongue or to the Islamic past. The controversy is by no means over, but Ottoman Turkish is dead.

Geoffrey Lewis both acquaints the general reader with the often bizarre, sometimes tragi-comic, but never dull story of the reform, and provides a stimulating and incisive account for students of Turkish language, history, and culture. The author draws on his own wide experience of Turkey and his personal knowledge of many of the leading actors. He has left no word, phrase, or sentence of Turkish untranslated, other than the names of books and articles.

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Recensione:

Review from previous edition The Turkish Language Reform is a dramatic story, entertainingly written, and not overly long. What is more, it provides a great insight into the practicalities of language planning.... From the moment you read 'A catastrophic success' in the subtitle you know that Lewis's intention is to provide interesting, entertaining reading. The story is a great one ... and well worth the read.' ( Journal of Sociolinguistics 5/2, 2001)

Professor Lewis has written a fascinating book and he deserves the gratitude and appreciation of both colleagues and non-specialists alike. Lewis has succeeded in making a demanding task seem particularly easy and even graceful. As a stylist, Lewis is incisive, sometime brutally candid, and almost always witty. The book is sure to remain the last word on the language reform for a long time to come. ( Journal of Middle Eastern Studies)

Very informative - especially for the nonspecialist - and worthwhile reading ... this book can and must be recommended to anyone interested in the modern Turkish language.' ( Anthropological Linguistics)

Lewis's book is learned, eloquent, and witty... Particularly effective and entertaining are those passages which he skillfully translates twice — first in their unadulterated form with their full complement of words of non-Turkic origin, then in their clean-up, "pure" Turkic form.' ( Sino-Platonic Papers)

Lewis ... writes in a lively and witty style. Absolutely essential for collections supporting Turkish and linguistics departments at all levels... This book is a fascinating description of what can happen when language reform is attempted in an unplanned but enthusiastic fashion.' ( Choice)

L'autore:

Geoffrey Lewis, FBA 1979, has been Emeritus Professor of Turkish at the University of Oxford since 1986 and a Fellow of St Anthony's College since 1961 (now Emeritus). He was Oxford University Visiting Professor at Robert College, Istanbul 1959-68, and has been a Visiting Professor at Princeton and UCLA.

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Geoffrey Lewis
Editore: Oxford University Press, United Kingdom (2002)
ISBN 10: 0199256691 ISBN 13: 9780199256693
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Descrizione libro Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, 2002. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. 232 x 152 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****.This is the first full account of the transformation of Ottoman Turkish into Modern Turkish. It is based on the author s knowledge and experience of the language, history, and people of Turkey. The transformation of the Turkish language is probably the most thorough-going piece of linguistic engineering in history. Its prelude came in 1928, when the Arabo-Persian alphabet was outlawed and replaced by the Latin alphabet. It began in earnest in 1930 when Ataturk declared: Turkish is one of the richest of languages. It needs only to be used with discrimination. The Turkish nation, which is well able to protect its territory and its sublime independence, must also liberate its language from the yoke of foreign languages. All Arabic and Persian vocabulary was replaced forthwith by words collected from popular speech, resurrected from ancient texts, or coined from native roots and suffixes. The snag - identified by the author as one element in the catastrophic aspect of the reform - was that when these sources failed to provide the needed words, the reformers simply invented them. The reform was central to the young republic s aspiration to be western and secular, but it did not please those who remained wedded to their mother tongue or to the Islamic past. The controversy is by no means over, but Ottoman Turkish is dead. Geoffrey Lewis both acquaints the general reader with the often bizarre, sometimes tragi-comic, but never dull story of the reform, and provides a stimulating and incisive account for students of Turkish language, history, and culture. The author draws on his own wide experience of Turkey and his personal knowledge of many of the leading actors. He has left no word, phrase, or sentence of Turkish untranslated, other than the names of books and articles. Codice libro della libreria AAV9780199256693

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Descrizione libro Oxford University Press. Paperback. Condizione libro: new. BRAND NEW PRINT ON DEMAND., The Turkish Language Reform: A Catastrophic Success, Geoffrey Lewis, This is the first full account of the transformation of Ottoman Turkish into Modern Turkish. It is based on the author's knowledge and experience of the language, history, and people of Turkey. The transformation of the Turkish language is probably the most thorough-going piece of linguistic engineering in history. Its prelude came in 1928, when the Arabo-Persian alphabet was outlawed and replaced by the Latin alphabet. It began in earnest in 1930 when Ataturk declared: 'Turkish is one of the richest of languages. It needs only to be used with discrimination. The Turkish nation, which is well able to protect its territory and its sublime independence, must also liberate its language from the yoke of foreign languages.' All Arabic and Persian vocabulary was replaced forthwith by words collected from popular speech, resurrected from ancient texts, or coined from native roots and suffixes. The snag - identified by the author as one element in the catastrophic aspect of the reform - was that when these sources failed to provide the needed words, the reformers simply invented them. The reform was central to the young republic's aspiration to be western and secular, but it did not please those who remained wedded to their mother tongue or to the Islamic past. The controversy is by no means over, but Ottoman Turkish is dead. Geoffrey Lewis both acquaints the general reader with the often bizarre, sometimes tragi-comic, but never dull story of the reform, and provides a stimulating and incisive account for students of Turkish language, history, and culture. The author draws on his own wide experience of Turkey and his personal knowledge of many of the leading actors. He has left no word, phrase, or sentence of Turkish untranslated, other than the names of books and articles. Codice libro della libreria B9780199256693

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Geoffrey Lewis
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Descrizione libro Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, 2002. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. 232 x 152 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****. This is the first full account of the transformation of Ottoman Turkish into Modern Turkish. It is based on the author s knowledge and experience of the language, history, and people of Turkey. The transformation of the Turkish language is probably the most thorough-going piece of linguistic engineering in history. Its prelude came in 1928, when the Arabo-Persian alphabet was outlawed and replaced by the Latin alphabet. It began in earnest in 1930 when Ataturk declared: Turkish is one of the richest of languages. It needs only to be used with discrimination. The Turkish nation, which is well able to protect its territory and its sublime independence, must also liberate its language from the yoke of foreign languages. All Arabic and Persian vocabulary was replaced forthwith by words collected from popular speech, resurrected from ancient texts, or coined from native roots and suffixes. The snag - identified by the author as one element in the catastrophic aspect of the reform - was that when these sources failed to provide the needed words, the reformers simply invented them. The reform was central to the young republic s aspiration to be western and secular, but it did not please those who remained wedded to their mother tongue or to the Islamic past. The controversy is by no means over, but Ottoman Turkish is dead. Geoffrey Lewis both acquaints the general reader with the often bizarre, sometimes tragi-comic, but never dull story of the reform, and provides a stimulating and incisive account for students of Turkish language, history, and culture. The author draws on his own wide experience of Turkey and his personal knowledge of many of the leading actors. He has left no word, phrase, or sentence of Turkish untranslated, other than the names of books and articles. Codice libro della libreria AAV9780199256693

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