Turkish Language and Literature Conference


Elginkan Foundation Turkish Language and Literature Conference was organized in İstanbul in April 17-19 2013.   In the conference, which was organized in eight sessions for three days, 28 reports, which dealt with various subjects such as problem of today's Turkish language, language structure, Turkish education, formation of Turkish terms in science and art branches and exemplary pronunciation of Turkish, were presented and 2 open sessions were organized.


Conference started in April 17 2013 with the open session 'Turkish in Language of Art'.  Changes, which we have experienced but haven't been able to notice in the recent past regarding the language used radios and televisions, which are a more widespread mass media, were expressed and evaluated.


Changes occurring in daily language, and threats, dangers towards our language and solution methods were discussed in the sessions which started in the same day. It was expressed by participators that the language, which is a living being, were subjected to change within time and this was a natural and inevitable process.


Various reports regarding the structure of Turkish and grammar were presented in sessions in the second day.  Reports presented regarding Turkish education, including speaking Turkish, pronunciation and teaching Turkish to foreigners were discussed in the last day.


Conference ended with the session 'Turkish from Past to the Future', which was organized after the sessions.


The oldest known written texts of Turkish and the process from Bengü Taşlar until today were evaluated in the open session, in which a general evaluation of the conference was made.   Called as Orkhon Inscriptions as known, Bengü Taşlar belongs to the first half of the 8th century and has a very developed language and style compared to its period.  We understand from the memorials that Turkish was used in a very wide geography at that time.  Advancing from Asia to the West, Turks contributed to new nations in new geographies they arrived in, and also interacted with their languages and cultures.  Turkish majorly stayed in colloquial language and a language, which was is composed of three languages as Turkish, Arabic and Persian, and called Ottoman Turkish, was used in written language during the period of the Ottoman Empire which rules for 600 years.


According to the known history, Turks widely and commonly used Gokturk, Uighur, Arabic, Cyrillic and Latin alphabets.  Arabic alphabet was used the longest and most commonly. Latin, Arabic and Cyrillic alphabets are used in Turkish communities today.  Latin letters started to be used in the Turkish Republic with the Alphabet Revolution made in 1928.


It was expressed in the conference that some negativities we are having in Turkish language can be eliminated through effective works to be carried out in time.  Today Turkish broadcasting is made to various parts of the world through satellite broadcasts, television and radios, and number of people speaking Turkish increaes.  Moreover, Turkish schools are opened in the four corners of the world.  Yunus Emre Institutions established not only ensures spreading of the language but also promotion and extensification of the Turkish culture.


In the conference, importance of not altering the constitutional position of Turkish and its protection as the single official language was mentioned.  It was stated that learning of local language and dialects did not create and negativity in Turkish and on the contrary, brought colour and richness to our culture.


Developments occurring in science are effective in development of the science language. However, what is important is becoming the producer in science and giving Turkish names to devices and products produced.  It would be proper to provide the equivalent of terms and words entering from other languages with sources of Turkish.  Thus, negativities created by words of foreign origin in writing, pronunciation and vocabulary will be prevented.


Conference ended with vote of thanks of the Elginkan Foundation Manager İlhan Üttü. In his speech, İlhan Üttü expressed his targets regarding organization of the second Elginkan Foundation Turkish Language and Literature Conference at international level and in a more comprehensive form in 2015.