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Turkish Studies Initiative

Turkish Studies Initiative offers a cross-regional, comparative, and multi-disciplinary exploration of history, political economy, and culture in the context of the Ottoman Empire and the contemporary Turkey.

In their pursuit of becoming global citizens, Stanford students acquire and contribute to the collective body of contemporary thought about Turkey and the Ottoman Empire. Undergraduate and graduate courses offered by our faculty affiliates employ wide array of theoretical orientations and methodologies. Some courses take Stanford students to the actual sites in Turkey, such as Çatalhöyükİstanbul, or İzmir. Others offer cutting-edge training in a small classroom setting enriched by thorough discussion.  Both Ottoman and modern Turkish language courses are offered for conversational and research purposes, addressing various levels of fluency.

Through the Turkish Studies initiative, we sponsor lecture series, academic conferences, film screenings, and outreach events, bringing scholars together with entrepreneurs and policy-makers to critically engage with pressing political and economic issues facing Turkey. In 2007, we hosted Nobel Laureate Orhan Pamuk with the participation of over seventeen hundred people. In 2010, our 2-day Conference on Islam and Secularism in Contemporary Turkey produced a well-attended forum and book chapters or journal articles published in various venues. In 2011, we sponsored a Turkish Film Poster Art Exhibit, which was first showcased at Stanford and later traveled to the Washington, D.C. Effective September 2015, we collaborate with Stanford's Abbasi Program in organizing  Turkish/Ottoman Studies Student Network, providing an interdisciplinary forum for Stanford students to discuss their intellectual and professional interests.