Thurin, Romain


Language: Turkish

Location of Study: Istanbul Turkey

Program of Study: Ibn Haldun University Turkish summer course

Sponsors: Liu Institute for Asia and Asian Studies, the College of Arts and Letters, and the Center for the Study of Languages and Cultures.

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A brief personal bio: 

I am a Ph.D student at the Medieval Institute specializing in the political and social history of the late Medieval Islamic world. My research focuses on the Seljuk Sultanate of Rum, the early Anatolian Beyliks, and the Mongol Ilkhanate. As part of my training, I have previously lived and studied in other Middle-Eastern countries.

Why this summer language abroad opportunity is important to me:

Anatolian Turkish is one of the main languages of study in my dissertation, which focuses on the emergence of the Beyliks in the post-Seljuk period. As a student of Medieval Anatolian History, the ability to speak, read, and write in Turkish is essential to engage with secondary literature and Turkish scholars alike.  In addition, studying and living in Turkey’s most important city will give me a crucial, first-hand knowledge of Turkish culture. I have no doubt that the SLA grant will be an important step towards achieving these outcomes.

What I hope to achieve as a result of this summer study abroad experience:

My goal is to achieve full professional mastery of the Turkish language by the time I submit my dissertation Proposal in Fall 2019. My more immediate goal is to progress from an advanced beginner to a strong upper intermediate level. As I am planning to come back to Turkey in 2019, and dedicate next Spring to developing a solid foundation in Ottoman Turkish, advanced knowledge of Modern Turkish is a first, important step to beginning this process.

My specific learning goals for language and intercultural learning this summer:

  1. At the end of the summer, I will be able to read academic literature in Turkish.
  2. At the end of the summer, I will have achieved the equivalent of a full year of coursework in Turkish.
  3. At the end of the summer, I will be able to communicate in Turkish with native speakers.