Posts tagged "Language"
At the Tomb of Imam Asim

At the Tomb of Imam Asim

    Mystics seem to have a penchant for seeking out remote locations. Perhaps out-of-the-way spots are more conducive to contemplation, and they add an element of enigma when chosen as a final resting place. The tomb of Imam Asim, in China’s northwestern Xinjiang Province, conforms to type. North of the oasis city of Hotan,...
Kurds without Slogans

Kurds without Slogans

The advent of spring has relit the path of the Kurdish struggle in Turkey. Activists tighten the ropes on banners strung over Newroz celebrations. But what do the slogans above mean to those dancing halay below? Young men fueled the festivities at Kazlıçeşme, a twenty-minute bus ride southwest of Istanbul’s tourist hub. On the long...
Interview with a Stone-Thrower

Interview with a Stone-Thrower

I first met him when he was a lanky 17-year-old with a shaven head, wide-set features, and a quiet voice that carried a hint of menace. He went by the name “Amed”, a pseudonym he chose as it was the Kurdish name for the city of Diyarbakır. It was 2010 and for the first time...
Treasure Map Time Machines

Treasure Map Time Machines

  Anyone who has traveled in rural Turkey as a foreigner has undoubtedly had the experience of being taken for a spy. Most likely, anyone who has ever expressed interest in Greek or Armenian ruins has also had the experience of being asked, first jokingly but then seriously, with the offer of a 50/50 split....
The Bukharian Jews: The Story of a Mizrahi Community

The Bukharian Jews: The Story of a Mizrahi Community

Even at first glance, Aron Aronov has a demanding presence you can’t forget. He doesn’t stand very tall and he dresses in plain dark clothing, but there is something about the way he looks at you that is captivating. His gaze drills into your eyes, and he speaks rapidly, his furrowed brows moving in tune...
The Annotated Adventures of an Apparent Academic

The Annotated Adventures of an Apparent Academic

Below are my SUUUPER LONG travelogues from this summer. Read them at your leisure, or not at all! Take care, ladies and gentlemen! Adventurously, Jaimee Dusty Desert I look out my window at the dusty mesquite tree. There is no puff of wind in this desert to shake it. I hear the sound of voices....
"Except in Kurdish Class"

“Except in Kurdish Class”

“Yes, they do, they do!” says 11 year old Nagihan. She is reacting to her mother, Aynur Kusca, who says elective Kurdish class isn’t offered at her daughter’s school. They discuss the topic but keep disagreeing. But anyway, Aynur explains, even if her daughter is right she wouldn’t enroll her in Kurdish class. “It is...
A Mother Tongue and the Daughter Teacher

A Mother Tongue and the Daughter Teacher

In the jumpy YouTube video, tiny eleven year-old Medya Ormek, dressed in baggy green pants and a black-checked scarf stands at a podium with her microphone in hand. In front of her are nearly a million people gathered for Newroz festival, an ancient Kurdish celebration of spring refashioned into a celebration of ethnicity and rebellion....