Kurdish: Unity and division in the world’s largest transnational minority language,” by Prof. Geoffrey Haig

23 April 2021 4:00pm

The Otago English and Linguistics Seminar series for Semester 1, 2021 continues this week with a presentation entitled “Kurdish: Unity and division in the world’s largest transnational minority language,” by Prof. Geoffrey Haig.

Geoff Haig is Professor of General Linguistics in the Institute of Oriental Studies at the University of Bamberg, Germany.  He describes the seminar topic as follows:

Kurdish is traditionally spoken in a region split across four countries (Iraq, Iran, Turkey and Syria). But after decades of violence in the Middle East, there is also now a massive diaspora community, whose linguistic identity is imbued with special significance, but faces enormous challenges: not only political repression in the homeland countries, but also the long-standing divisions that cross-cut the language(s) traditionally referred to as Kurdish. This talk gives an overview of the Kurds’ linguistic and socio-cultural roots that have shaped their current situation, focussing primarily on the Kurdish people of Turkey.

The seminar meets at the usual time, in a newish venue: Burns Lecture Theatre 4, at 4.00 p.m., on Friday, 23 April 2021.  We hope you will be able to join us.  


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