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The Capital of Otherness: A Geocritical Exploration of Diyarbakır, Turkey

  • Francesco MarilungoEmail author
Chapter

Abstract

This chapter focuses on literary representations of Diyarbakır, the largest Kurdish city in Turkey. Often called “the capital of Kurdistan”, in Turkey Diyarbakır is “second” in at least two respects. Firstly, it is the cultural and political centre of Turkey’s second ethnic group, the Kurds. Secondly, in the temporal evolutionary line of Turkish modernist imaginary, Diyarbakır often represents tradition, backwardness, underdevelopment. This temporal framework intersects an orientalist geographical framework for which Turkey’s West is peaceful, liberal, modern, whereas its inner East, of which Diyarbakır is the city-symbol, is violent, unsettled, or archaic. Nonetheless, switching the focus from the Turkish to the Kurdish cultural imaginary, Diyarbakır’s position changes significantly. The city, in Kurdish language called Amed, becomes a primary source of identity, the capital of imagined Greater Kurdistan.

Keywords

Literature Representations Diyarbakır Turkey Kurdistan 

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of ExeterExeterUK

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