Constructions of the Turkish self-image in textbooks for Turkish as a heritage language

This project analyses the construction of national identity in textbooks produced for heritage language education (HLE); both in books under Turkish consular control and those for which the individual federal states in Germany are responsible. It will compare textbooks for HLE published in Germany and approved for use in three federal states with educational materials for HLE produced in Ankara for international use. The contents of the individual chapters in eight textbooks from the series ‘Türkce ve Türk Kültürü’, produced by the Turkish Ministry of Education, and of a selection of eight textbooks approved for use in three German federal states, produced by two publishing houses located in Germany, will be examined and comparatively analysed with regards to their depictions of the Turkish self-image, particularly in terms of historical, cultural and religious dimensions and with respect to gender perceptions. An examination of history narratives can provide insights into aspects of Turkish history that are highlighted or omitted in the construction of the self-image, particularly with regard to religious and ethnic diversity, and memories of conflicts. Critical discourse analysis will be used to determine content related to culture and religion and to establish the pedagogical approaches used in the educational media including their historical narratives, images of Turkey and interpretation of Islam. The findings from the textbook analysis will be discussed with a selection of HLE experts at a one and a half day workshop and subsequently published in a 40-page research report



Project head

Riem Spielhaus

Project team

Zrinka Stimac

Aysegül Turan (assistant)

Project consultant

Önder Cetin, research fellow