Turkey, Culture

Turkish, Iranian agencies hold conference in Ankara

Panelists raise awareness on cultural interaction between two countries

Turkish, Iranian agencies hold conference in Ankara


By Erdogan Cagatay Zontur, Zehra Nur Duz


A conference in Ankara on Friday highlighted the cultural relationships between Iran and Turkey.

The Iranian embassy in Ankara and Turkey's Culture and Tourism Ministry sponsored “Iran, Our Neighbor” in which Turkish professors Ilber Ortayli and Adnan Karaismailoglu highlighted the interaction between Turkish and Iranian literature throughout history.

“Iranian literature is as important for Turkey as the Greek literature in Europe,” said the renowned historian Ortayli while stressing the influence of Iranian literature, especially in Turkish poems since the pre-Islamic period, which dates to 600 A.D.

Ortaylı said Turkish people have a "growing" interest in Persian language and Iranian culture in recent years. He added: “Iran takes its place in the lives of Turks again.”

Karaismailoglu said the lines between Turkish and Iranian poems are not clear, adding culture in Mideast geography should not be limited to formal frontiers.

He stressed the similarities between Turkish and Iranian poets, giving examples from Mevlana Rumi, the famed 13th-century Muslim poet.

He also spoke about the effects of historical events and social developments on Iranian poem. He said the Iranian poets used to write in a “rebellious” style before the 1979 Iran Revolution.

Newly-appointed Iranian Ambassador to Ankara Mohammad Farazmand said the cultural relationship between the two countries should be developed and sustained.

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