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Faculty Profile


The Faculty of Turkish Studies and Modern Asian Studies was established originally as part of the School of Philosophy of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, in 2003. As of June 2013, the Faculty is part of the School of Economic and Political Studies. The Faculty offers two areas of specialisation, in Turkish Studies and in Modern Asian Studies, respectively. The Turkish Studies specialisation area started to operate first, enrolling 60 students annually, while the area of Asian Studies is expected to welcome its first students in the near future, focusing initially on the Japanese and Chinese cultures.

The operation of a Faculty of Turkish Studies per se has been a long-standing requirement, both within the University of Athens and the academic community in general. There can be no doubt that its establishment, after a rather long period of preparation, deviates from the specific and far-famed boundaries of the “typical” Schools of Philosophy, with their West-European linguistic and literary focus (e.g. English, French and German Languages and Literatures) and enters into the domain of Area Studies (Études Régionales, Raum Wissenschaften). The teaching of Turkish language, History and Culture at the University level is ground-breaking, since it creates a University department focusing exclusively on this particular cognitive and cultural world, for the first time in Greek academic history. The Faculty of Turkish Studies and Modern Asian Studies is supervised by a temporary General Assembly, comprising (since November, 2010) faculty members. It aims to bring the scientific study of language, history and culture of Turkey to our country, well beyond amateur approaches and non-scientific vulgarisations that rely merely on sentiment, and to shed light on its long course, with which Hellenism, in its widest sense, has maintained close contacts for many centuries. The temporary General Assembly of the Faculty and the University of Athens, by extension, estimate that this effort will produce scientists and specialised researchers whose thorough knowledge and understanding of the geographical and geo-cultural system of the Turkish world, and of its Middle Eastern and Asian geographical, geo-economic and geopolitical super-system, will significantly and substantially support its understanding, inter alia, by Greece's scientific and research community and will thus contribute to a better communication between the two neighbouring countries, on all levels of scientific, cultural, political, social and economic activity. Besides, it is widely accepted that the approach of peoples and states can only be realised, if the necessary “capital” is invested in education, with the aim to comprehend and consequently respect the physiognomy, the particularities and, generally, the cultural level of the “Other”.

During the last six years, the Faculty of Turkish Studies and Modern Asian Studies has operated almost exclusively by relying on specialised scientists and has launched schemes of co-operation with Turkish universities, within the context of the Erasmus programme. Also, it has recently been staffed with its first faculty members and pursues the election procedures for appointing new faculty members. Finally, it is a landmark, that the first students of the Faculty have graduated already. The future of the Faculty is both promising and far-reaching, and it is more than certain that its presence will widen the scientific horizons of the current academic space, suppressing superficialities and allusion, eliminating brinkmanship in political theory and thought, overcoming deadlocks and syndromes, and thus contributing significantly towards a self-confident knowledge and understanding, not only of the other side of the Aegean, but also of the wider super-systemic area of the Greater Middle East and Central Asia.