Why learn Turkish
It’s not only the Turks who speak Turkish. It is also one of the official languages in Cyprus, some municipalities in Macedonia and the Prizren District of Kosovo. Parts of the population in Bulgaria, Romania, Greece, Germany, Azerbaijan, Serbia and Iraq speak Turkish as well. Native speakers exceed 63 million people.
Reasons to learn Turkish
Turkish belongs to a family of over 30 Turkic languages used in parts of Caucasus, Central Asia and Eastern Europe. Similarities make it easy for people who speak Turkish to learn other Turkic tongues and dialects.
Studying the language opens up broader horizons encompassing the cultural and political heritage of Turkish and neighbouring civilizations. Students focusing on Ottoman and Eastern European history or contemporary Eurasian studies benefit from research sources in the original language.
Turkey is among the world’s top 10 favourite tourist destinations. Every year, 26 million visitors explore its famous sites dating back to ancient and Biblical times. Çatalhöyük in southern Anatolia is the biggest well-preserved Neolithic-era settlement, now recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage site. Religious pilgrims trek the routes that St. Paul trod or visit the Virgin Mary’s house in Ephesus. The remains of Noah’s Ark are believed to rest on Mount Ararat. Christian holy shrines blend with Islamic architecture in this land of wonders.
Learning the language unlocks the key to an in-depth understanding and appreciation of Turkish arts, music, commerce, trade, politics and society. This valuable knowledge enhances career and business opportunities in government, industry and media sectors. Familiarity with the language is an asset for service organisations advancing collaborative endeavours that promote European and Asian mutual interests.
Westernisation and significance of Turkish in Europe
The language was modernised into standard form when the Ottoman script gave way to the Latin alphabet and phonetic pronunciation. Other European languages, specifically German and French, have contributed to the language. Terms primarily borrowed from English to introduce novel technologies and ideas have further enriched the vocabulary.
In Europe, a significant number of academic positions in various disciplines are open to professionals who speak Turkish. The language is spoken by over 2 million people in Germany. Turkish speaking communities also thrive in the UK, Belgium, Austria, France, Switzerland and the Netherlands.
Importance of Turkey in Eurasia
Turkey is a transcontinental country straddling Eastern Europe and Western Asia. The straits between the Black Sea on the north, Aegean Sea on the west and Mediterranean Sea on the south are under Turkey’s jurisdiction. Its strategic location and status as emerging global economy position the country as a crucial player in Middle Eastern and European affairs.
Ankara, the country’s capital, is a major commercial hub at the crossroads of Asia and Europe. Cosmopolitan Istanbul, the largest city in both Turkey and Europe, is also a vital centre of trade and industry.
Turkey’s modern outlook, membership with the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, and geopolitical ties with Central Asia and the Middle East can serve to bridge gaps between East and West. The country’s co-existent stance among different religious and ethnic groups can play a significant role in fostering peace, tolerance and cooperation among various factions.
Knowing the language is a definite advantage to engage in socio-cultural exchanges and meaningful dialogue with native speakers in many countries. Learners of the language can share conversations and experiences with other international students as well. Students find Babbel an effective yet affordable alternative to learn and speak Turkish. Babbel’s proven system integrates a fun, interactive learning environment with a flexible multimedia platform and innovative technology.