Library Week in Turkey, 28 March – 3 April 2011 – Part I

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Turkish National Library View - Nation Of Turks
Turkish National Library
Turkish National Library

For the past 47 years, the last week in March has been celebrated as Library Week in Turkey (1) with the goal of developing the love of reading and emphasizing the importance of books to students and the awareness of libraries for the general public.

Very few advertisements on the Library Week appeared in the news media, or anywhere except in only a few places. One of the newspapers reported that the Library Week celebration took place at the Antique Library in Ephesus. The posters for the Library Week includes the photograph of the Library in Ephesus, built-in 970 AD.   An exhibition of photographs of students reading at several universities is currently on display at the Taksim Metro station, which has some wonderful images. The curator of the exhibition, entitled ‘’Incentives for Reading, 7 – to – 70 ‘’, is M. Lutfi Sen and Bahar Bicer and Abdullah Turan are the librarians worked on the Project.

The Library at the small Pasa Village near the site of the buried Allioni Health center

On the way to Izmir from Istanbul, I went to see the site of the antique Allioni Health Center which was recently covered with sand and buried under the waters behind the Yortalı Dam. The road to Allioni was also submerged which made it impossible to see the site. As I was driving around to find a way to the top of the dam, I found myself at the center of Pasakoy village and in front of a library with a number of students waiting to be driven to another village nearby to begin their classes. The library across the mosque was  closed since it was only 7:00 AM, but the students told me that the Library is open every day. What a wonderful oppportunıty for the children of Pasakoy village and others from nearby villages to be able to spend some time in the library. When I spoke with the Muhtar of the village later, I congratulated him and the village elders for the library.

Turkish Library and Museum in America for Friendship and Peace Project, April 23, 2015

Some Turkish – American organızations in the US claim that there are close to 500,000 Turks and Turkısh – Americans in the United States, including the immigrants from the Turkic countrıes (2). However, there ıs not a single Turkish Library or a Museum in America. To  alleviate this problem, a Working Group has been holding meetings to establish a Turkish Library and Museum in America on April 23, 2015. The group held its first introductory and organizational meeting in Istanbul on March 29 and the second one in Izmir on April 3, 2011. The third meeting will be held on April 9, Saturday, in Ankara,  to be followed by other meetings in more cities in Turkey and the US. The Project will be introduced during an exhibition (May 1 -31, 2011) and a presentation on Mustafa Kemal Atatürk and Turkey at Hunterdon Public Library in Clinton, NJ, on May 21. 2011.

Last year, there was an international conference at the SantralIstanbul Campus of Bilgi University in Istanbul under the title, “The European Capital of Cultures, Istanbul-Pecs—Essen Ruhr are coming together to celebrate the 46th Library Week.” The conference, attended by university students, US İstanbul Consulate Representatives, public and the media representatives, was opened by the Rector of Bilgi University, Dr. Halil Guven, who presented information on the Bilgi University, a member of the Laureate International Universities, and stated the importance of libraries..

One of the speakers at the conference was Dr. Ann Carlson Weeks from Maryland University, Information Studies Centre, at College Park. Dr Weeks spoke about creating responsible ‘’ digital citizens’’ for the 21st century. She spoke about a project that the university is conducting, ”International Digital Children’s Library. Cristobal Pasadas, the head of the Psychology School Library at Granada University spoke about the development of public libraries.

Yuksel Oktay
3 April 2011, Sunday
Izmir

Notes. 1. The Library Week in the US is celbrated on April 10 – 17

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