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The Turkish Language Reform


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Table of Contents

1. Introduction 2. Ottoman Turkish 3. The New Alphabet 4. Ataturk and the Language Reform until 1936 5. The Sun-Language Theory and After 6. Atay, Atac, Sayili 7. Ingredients 8. Concoctions 9. Technical Terms 10. The New Yoke 11. The New Turkish 12. What Happened to the Language Society References


This is a study written with understanding and sympathy, avoiding such pitfalls as the opportunity to ridicule failures in the reform ... one cannot but admire the author for his expert analysis and convincing presentation ... a truly excellent book, which will remain the definitive scholarly work on the subject for a long time. Language Policy A very important contribution ... While others have told the history of the language reform as well, it is Lewis's great merit that more than a third of his study is devoted to analyzing the "ingredients" and "concoctions" of this reform, as he calls them. This he does both expertly and wittily, enlivening his scholarly discussion of how intellectuals and others employed various suffixes to coin new words while frequently bending the rules of linguistics. Language Policy This book will be compulsory reading for foreign students of Turkish. Geoffrey Lewis's account of one of the most thorough campaigns to purge a language of foreign elements will also attract the more general reader. There are substantial quotations from Turkish writers, and most will be thankful for the translations. Bengisu Rona, Times Higher Education Supplement 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. Journal of Sociolinguistics 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 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 This book can and must be recommended to anyone interested in the modern Turkish language. Anthropological Linguistics

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