Passport to Turkey
Schedule of Events - Fall 2009

UCO STUDENTS: Attend ten events and become eligible to enter the drawing for a $300 tuition waiver.

Monday, August 24, Chambers Library room 212 3:30-4:45 p.m.: Passport to Passport UCO. Learn more about the Passport program and what it can offer you this semester, and enjoy some eye-popping videos from the Turkish Board of Tourism. Tea and Turkish delight will be served (so if you only know about Turkish delight from the Chronicles of Narnia, you're in for a treat).

Wednesday, August 26, Chambers Library room 212 1:00-1:50 p.m.: Living and Working Abroad in Turkey. Are you interested in living in another country, but don't know where to start? Dr. Charolette Myles-Nixon has some tips from her experience as a teacher at Incirlik High School and School Psychologist in both Ankara and Incirlik, Turkey. She has been a practicing School Psychologist and a Professor in UCO's Special Services, Special Education program for 20 years.

Tuesday, September 1, Chambers Library ground floor 11:00-11:50 a.m.: "Tracking the Ottomans from the Fall of Constantinople to the Treaty of Lausanne." Dr. Jessica Sheetz-Nguyen of UCO's department of History and Geography will trace the rise and fall of the Islamic empire that defined Turkey's history for more than half a millennium. This presentation is co-sponsored by the University of Central Oklahoma Friends of the Library.

Thursday, September 3, Chambers Library ground floor 11:00-11:50 a.m.: "Mustafa Kemal Atatürk." Dr. T.H. Baughman of UCO's department of History and Geography will follow the amazing career of the man whose vision of a secular republic succeeded the Ottoman Empire in the chaos following World War I. This presentation is co-sponsored by the University of Central Oklahoma Friends of the Library.

Wednesday, September 9, BUS 121 (Business Building) 4:30-5:30 p.m.: Special Guest Bilal Erturk, "Business in Turkey and the Islamic World." Dr. Erturk is an Assistant Professor of Finance at Oklahoma State University's Spears School of Business. He will talk about Turkey's economic situation nationally and globally, and discuss topics unique to the Islamic world, such as the burgeoning field of Islamic Finance--first codified by Turks in the Ottoman Empire--that has developed in the wake of the Muslim prohibition on receiving interest on one's investments.

Tuesday, September 15, Pegasus Theater 3:30-5:30 p.m.: Film, Crossing the Bridge: The Sound of Istanbul. A lover of experimentation with sound, Alexander Hacke of the German avantgarde band Einstürzende Neubauten roams the streets of Istanbul with his mobile recording studio and "magic mike" to assemble an inspired portrait of Turkish music. His mission to capture the musical diversity of Istanbul leads to the discovery of a broad spectrum ranging from modern electronic, rock, and hip-hop to classical "Arabesque." Artists include neo-psychedelic band Baba Zula, fusion DJs Orient Expressions, rock groups Duman and Replikas, maverick rocker Erkin Koray, Ceza (Turkey’s answer to Public Enemy), breakdance performers Istanbul Style Breakers, digital dervish Mercan Dede, renowned clarinetist Selim Sesler, Canadian folk singer Brenna MacCrimmon, street performers Siyasiyabend, Kurdish singer Aynur, the "Elvis of Arabesque" Orhan Gencebay, and legendary divas Müzeyyen Senar and Sezen Aksu.

Wednesday, September 16, Pegasus Theater 1:00-1:50 p.m.: "Reflections on Modern Turkish Society and Politics." Dr. Husam Mohamad of UCO's Political Science department will identify current socio-political trends in Turkey and explain how these trends affect our life and foreign policy here in the United States.

Tuesday, September 22, Pegasus Theater 3:30-5:30 p.m.: Film, A Touch of Spice. The relationship between Turkey and Greece has been a difficult one since long before the 19th-century Greek War of Independence from the Ottoman Empire. After the start of intercommunal violence on Cyprus in 1963 and the increasing tension between Turkey and Greece, most Greek citizens who lived in Istanbul were deported to Greece. This film tells the story of Fanis, who was forced to leave Istanbul--and his beloved grandfather's spice shop--at the age of seven. 35 years later Fanis leaves Athens and travels back to his birthplace with the hope of reuniting with his grandfather and his first love. As he prepares for the journey, he realizes that he forgot to put a little bit of spice in his own life. This film broke all box-office records when it premiered in Greece in 2003. Its original Greek title is Politikh Kouzina (Politiki Kouzina) which means Cuisine of the City, a reference to the inspirational role of the cuisine of Istanbul.

Thursday, September 24, Pegasus Theater 3:30-4:45 p.m.: "Aristotle, Istanbul and Bees: A Natural History of Northwestern Turkey." Dr. John Barthell, Dean of UCO's College of Math and Science and an apiologist (specialist in honeybees) by training, makes an annual trek to the west coast of Turkey to pursue his research. In June 2010, he plans to lead a study abroad tour to western Turkey and the Greek island of Lesbos for UCO students. Dr. Barthell will talk about his travels and his research in a presentation that will interest scientists and non-scientists alike.

Friday, September 25, Pegasus Theater 11:00-11:50 a.m.: "The Trouble with Zeugma." Nine years ago, one of the great frontier cities of the Roman Empire all but disappeared from the face of the Earth under the flood waters of a dam. The Turkish government has embarked on one of the most ambitious engineering projects in the world, building a series of dams on the Euphrates over the past twenty years. Almost every dam threatens ancient remains that lie below in one of the most archaeologically rich regions of the world. What can you do when the needs of the present overwhelm the needs of the past... and the future? Watch a video and join in a discussion with UCO faculty.

Monday, September 28, Constitution Hall 12:00-1:15 p.m.: Special Guest Stephen Kinzer, "Turkey: America's New Best Friend?" It was no accident that President Obama chose Turkey as the first Muslim country he wanted to visit. It is the most democratic country in the Islamic world, and it has recently launched a new drive to become a regional and even global power. Stephen Kinzer, the first New York Times bureau chief in Istanbul and author of Crescent and Star: Turkey Between Two Worlds, suggests that Turkey and the United States share both values and strategic interests. He argues that a partnership between these two countries--perhaps with Iran as a third partner--could have a profound impact on the Middle East and the wider world. Mr. Kinzer's home page.

Tuesday, September 29, Liberal Arts room 211 12:30-2:00 p.m.: Rumi: Poet of the Heart. Dr. Susan Spencer of UCO's English department will lead a discussion centered around Jalal-e-Din Rumi, the 13th-century mystical poet who founded the Mevlevi order of Sufi dervishes, sometimes called the "whirling dervishes." A close reading of some of Rumi's poems will accompany a video documentary in which Coleman Barks, the most celebrated modern translator of Rumi's work, talks about the poet and his poetry.

Thursday, October 1: Nigh University Center room 304 9:30-10:45 a.m., Special Guest Bulent Atalay, "Leonardo and his Turkish Connection." Professor Atalay, a Turkish-American physicist and the author of Math and the Mona Lisa and Leonardo's Universe, presents science through art and art through science, approaching the larger goal of achieving a synthesis of the two fields with Leonardo DaVinci's's model providing the unifying thread. A highlight of today's talk: In 1953 a scholar, carrying out inventory of the documents in the archives of the Topkapi Palace, uncovered a letter from Leonardo to the Court of Sultan Beyazit. Exactly five hundred years earlier, Leonardo had offered his services as a military engineer in Istanbul, proposing to build a single-arch bridge over the Golden Horn.
This event is made possible by Oklahoma's DaVinci Institute, which will join with UCO in hosting an all-day creativity seminar on The New Renaissance: A Revolution of Creativity and Learning in the Nigh University Center on September 30.

Monday, October 5, Howell Hall Atrium 1:00-1:50 p.m.: "Pythagoras." Dr. Charlotte Simmons, Chair of the Department of Mathematics, will discuss Pythagoras's life and achievements, and his relationship with his colleagues during the golden age of ancient scientific and philosophical thought that prevailed in Asia Minor (ancient Turkey) in the sixth century B.C.E.

Tuesday, October 6, Pegasus Theater 3:30-5:30 p.m.: Film, Gitmek (My Marlon and Brando). Based on a true story. Ayça Damgaci, a Turkish actress from Istanbul, met Hama Ali, a charismatic B-movie Kurdish actor, on a film set in western Turkey in 2004. The two fell in love. After the shoot, Ayça returned to Istanbul and Hama to his home, Süleymaniye in Northern Iraq. They continued their relationship on the telephone and via letters while America prepared to attack Iraq. The post often didn't work and the phone lines were usually cut off, but from time to time Ayça would receive a declaration of love on video. Feeling suffocated by her own city and unable to bear the distance any longer, Ayça (who plays herself in the film) decided to travel to find her lover. However, getting into a country at war turned out to be just as difficult as getting out.

Wednesday, October 7, Communications Bldg. room 120 10:00-10:50 a.m.: Special guest Nurcihan Uysal, "Women in Turkey." A graduate student at the University of Oklahoma's Gaylord School of Journalism and the outreach director for Oklahoma City's Raindrop Turkish House Cultural Center, Ms. Uysal will share her insight into the everyday lives of Turkish women at home and abroad.

Thursday, October 8, Wellness Center room 127 3:30-4:45 p.m.: Inside Turkish Cuisine with Tiffany Shurtz. Tiffany Shurtz is the Dietetic Internship Director here at UCO. She has been a registered dietitian for 17 years. She practiced 14 years in clinical and community settings before joining the UCO family full time in 2006. She is the media spokesperson for the Oklahoma Dietetic Association and has been actively involved in "This City is Going on a Diet" with Mayor Mick Cornett. Turkish cuisine has many healthy choices: find out about both new and familiar dishes and their health benefits.

Monday, October 12, Pegasus Theater 12:00-1:15 p.m.: Special Guest Çigdem Balim Harding, "Turkic Speaking Peoples: from Inner Asia to the Balkans." A senior lecturer and director of Graduate Studies and Language Instruction at Indiana University's Department of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures and the Middle East Editor of the Women's Studies International Forum, Dr. Balim Harding has devoted her career to contemporary transnational Turkish and Islamic culture. She will talk about current developments and trends in everyday Turkish society, with an emphasis on Turkic languages and literatures, and contemporary transnational communities in Europe and the USA. Dr. Balim Harding's home page.

Tuesday, October 13, Howell Hall 201 7:30-8:45 p.m.: "Dancing with Caffeine – The History of Coffee in Turkey." David von Minden of UCO's Chemistry department gives us... literally... the inside scoop on the beverage that has become a Turkish (and an American!) institution.
Online extra: Video, How to Make Turkish Coffee.

Wednesday, October 21, Pegasus Theater (Liberal Arts Building): Documentary, Forsaken Paths. Every June, the semi-nomadic Çepni tribe in the Black Sea region of Turkey lead their cows on a two-day hike up to their high pastures. Today, only a few families still follow the old traditional paths to the mountains. The cows are dressed with colorful talismanic tassels accompanying the chime of cowbells, and the girls put on their most elegant traditional costumes. The journey concludes with a festival where thousands of people from various ethnic backgrounds meet on a remote mountaintop to feast and dance all day to the manic tunes of the kemençe, drum, and pipe.
The producers have given us permission to offer multiple screenings, so the film will be screened three times today at 12:00, 1:00, and 2:00.

Thursday, October 22, Wellness Center group fitness room 3:30-4:45 p.m.: Bellydancing workshop with Aalim Dance Academy.

Monday, October 26, ED 115 (Education building) 1:00 p.m., with a reception to follow: Special Guest Sait Yavuz, "The Gülen Education Model." Fetullah Gülen, a Muslim scholar, thinker and educational advocate, has been recognized for his stances for interfaith and intercultural dialogue, for science, democracy and spirituality, and against violence, and turning religion into political ideology. Gülen’s ideas and activism have inspired a faith-based social movement in Turkey which could have often been referred to as volunteer service movement that has set up charitable foundations and companies active in the areas of education, media, health care, relief and business. Over 1,000 educational institutions such as K-12 schools, tutoring centers and reading rooms have been established around the world inspired by Gülen’s ideas and life. These are non-religious, non-denominational, secular schools sponsored by local entrepreneurs, altruistic educators and dedicated parents. Regardless of their location, these schools are symbols of harmonious interfaith and intercultural relationships, successful unification of faith and reason, and dedication to the service of humanity. Mr. Yavuz is the Director of Academic Affairs at Gülen Institute, University of Houston. A reception will follow, hosted by the College of Education and Professional Studies.

Wednesday, October 28, University Center 2:00 p.m.: Fashion Show Under the direction of Dr. Susan Miller, UCO's Fashion Marketing and Global Diversity and Protocol students will present a fashion show focused on traditional Turkish attire and contemporary clothing inspired by it.

Thursday, October 29, Jazz Lab 7:00-9:00 p.m. Turkish Republic Day Exhibit and Modern Languages Talent Show. The Department of Modern Languages presents its annual Talent Show at the UCO Jazz Lab, 100 E. Fifth Street. Food and drink will be available for purchase from Hideaway Pizza, next door (they'll deliver right to your table). Enjoy the aesthetic and educational delights of the display in the lobby, a tribute to Turkey's national holiday, Republic Day, put together by the Museum-Study students of Heidi Vaughn, Director of UCO's Laboratory of History Museum.

Wednesday, November 4, Liberal Arts room 211 7:00-8:15 p.m.: Special Guest Kamil Celik, "Democracy in Turkey." Mr. Celik comes to us from the Tulsa branch of the Raindrop Turkish House cultural center.

Monday, November 9, Liberal Arts room 211 1:00-1:50 p.m.: Special Guest Vahap Uysal, "Sufism." Sufism, a practice that emphasizes the mystical dimensions of Islam, emphasizes the purification of the inner self to gain a closer relationship with God. Dr. Uysal comes to us from the Oklahoma City branch of the Raindrop Turkish House cultural center.

Wednesday, November 11, Melton Gallery (Art building) 3:30-4:30 p.m.: "Modern Turkey, Traditional Arts." Dr. Theresa Vaughan, Chair of the Department of Humanities and Philosophy, will give a multimedia presentation about traditional Turkish folk art. While you are in the Art building, please take a little time to admire the display of Turkish art on loan from the Oklahoma City branch of the Raindrop Turkish House.

Tuesday, November 17, Constitution Hall 7:00-9:30 p.m.: The Man Who Saved the World, or, Turkish Star Wars.
Guaranteed to be the worst movie you've ever seen! Because not all culture is high culture...
In 1982, a group of highly motivated but poorly financed movie buffs founded what would become a series of underground cult classics, the satirical low-budget "Turkish rip-off cinema" genre. Cheer on two brave Turkish warriors as they combat evil with cardboard swords and gravity-defying Ninja moves! Thrill to their X-Wing dogfights as they sit in cockpits with Walkman headphones on their motorcycle helmets, as footage from Star Wars plays on a TV behind them! Gasp in terror as the Turkish Darth Vader drinks human blood and sends his giant Muppet monsters and toilet-paper zombies to attack!
Screening of the film will be preceded by a costume competition and a martial arts demonstration by UCO's Budo Society, in keeping with the movie's many Kung Fu-style skirmishes. This event is co-sponsored by UCO's MEGA League (Media Entertainment, Gaming and Animation).

Wednesday, November 18, Melton Gallery (Art building) 3:30-4:30 p.m.: "The Restoration and Conservation of Turkish Archaeological Treasures." Heidi Vaughn, Director of UCO's Laboratory of History Museum will present a multimedia presentation addressing the unique problems in restoring Turkish landmarks and archaeological sites. While you are in the Art building, please take a little time to admire the display of Turkish art on loan from the Oklahoma City branch of the Raindrop Turkish House.

Friday, November 20, Virginia Lamb Room (HES building room 109) 11:00-11:50 a.m.: Special guest Ali Soylu, "Family Life in Turkey and Adaptations when coming to the US." Dr. Soylu is an Assistant Professor Management at Cameron University in Lawton. He immigrated to the United States after receiving his B.A. in Business from Anadolu University in Turkey.

Tuesday, November 24, Deadline! Turn in your passport at the Centre for Global Competency, NUC 137, to enter the drawing.


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