Switch to Forum Live View Talking Turkey: Jewish Museum of Turkey is a unique place
|5 years ago :: Jun 17, 2012 - 2:42PM #1|
Talking Turkey: Jewish Museum of Turkey is a unique place
ISTANBUL — Turkey’s first and only Jewish museum, one of the very few museums of its kind in the Muslim world, opened 11 years ago to mark the 500th anniversary of the arrival of Spanish Jews to the Ottoman Empire.
More than a decade after its inauguration, the focus of the Jewish Museum of Turkey is on this group of arrivals and their descendants.
“We celebrate five centuries of togetherness of Turkish Jews and Turkish Muslims,” said Naim Guleryuz, the president and curator.
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As Guleryuz writes in The Turkish Jews, a booklet visitors can purchase at the museum, the history of Jews in Anatolia began centuries before the migration of Sephardi Jews into the Ottoman Empire.
As he points out, ancient synagogue ruins have been found in Sardes and Miletus, while traces of Jewish settlement have been discovered near Bursa.
But at the Jewish Museum, the emphasis is on the Ottoman Empire and its successor state, the Turkish secular republic, which emerged in 1923.
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According to Guleryuz, there is only one other Jewish museum that’s even remotely like it, in Casablanca, Morocco.
Cairo’s Jewish museum, which showcased Jewish history in Egypt, closed years ago, he noted.
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A section on Turkish Jewish composers reveals that the Turkish Air Force March was composed by Isak Algazi, with lyrics by Isak Ferrera.
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