How related are Turkish to Greek culture?

By: | Post date: 2016-09-04 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: Culture, Modern Greek

*shrug* Similar. 500 years of close coexistence and bilingualism (not that people can grok that now). Lots of food in common, with traffic in both directions, and different preferences of spices. Several common cultural practices, such as taking shoes off before going inside. Many, many formulaic expressions in common. Significant musical overlap: in some genres more than others, and church music was one of them.

Aziz Dida, as a neighbour of both our peoples, can see it clearer than both our peoples: they’re different, but only if you look closely.

Some of those cultural similarities aren’t even old. One that astonished me was reading a Turkish paper while waiting around a hamam. (I wasn’t the one in the hamam.) I don’t really know the language, but the look and feel, the cliches, the punctuation, the formatting… they were all recognisable from the Greek press. So too were the apartment buildings, down to the clunky old lifts. Those commonalities though is more about common cultural hegemony from an external source—in those cases, I’m guessing, pre-WWII France.

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