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I have chosen to conduct a study into the Turkish community and language as their identity. As being Turkish myself, I have an interest in this topical area and feel I have the ability to relate and recognise some of the issues that will come out from it.

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Introduction

A2 Sociology Coursework I have chosen to conduct a study into the Turkish community and language as their identity. As being Turkish myself, I have an interest in this topical area and feel I have the ability to relate and recognise some of the issues that will come out from it. Using my own experiences, I feel I'll have the certainty to understand and the advantage of having the capability to relate to my respondents, to build the necessary rapport. Background Information The majority of Turkish citizens, from both Cyprus and mainland, came to Britain in the late fifties and early sixties. They were the second group to come over along with Greek Cypriots. Both these groups have been more involved in Britain and more socially excepted than any other group. Similar to the Jewish community, the Turkish community have moved from Haringey towards Enfield, easing the main concentration of them that was once there. My local community has in fact taken a lot of minorities, such as Turkish, where the arrival has been so high, there are in fact now 'Turkish areas', e.g. Hackney, Dalston etc Identity has become quite a talkative point in the past few years, because of the great influx of asylum seekers, Turkish as well as other minorities. Secondary data on language- 'Cypriots in Haringey' In any community it is natural that families speak their mother tongue at home. The close-knit community such as the Turkish community has further maintained this. Most parents desire for their children to be bilingual and subsequently try to speak both English and Turkish at home. Because of there close knit community, children (especially the eldest child), speak Turkish at home until the approximate age of five years old, when ready for school. This has been seen as an enormous set back for teachers who are often unable to ascertain how intelligent a child is and has been reasoned for them to be put in lower levelled work classes. ...read more.

Middle

It raised questions such as, whether it's important to be bilingual? How they learnt to talk English? Whether their households were predominantly Turkish speaking? etc (See questionnaire in appendix). I found many of my respondents shared comparable experiences and adopted similar attitudes. This I felt resulted from similar backgrounds. For example those who were born in Turkey/Cyprus had far stronger values on their children to learn Turkish, practice traditions, etc, than those who were born here. Many of their reasons for this were also analogous; they want their children to have the advantage of being bilingual, to be able to communicate with elder members of the family and most importantly to 'remember their mother tongue and recognise their roots' (Fatma Jemal). Those who were born in England I found, tended to adopt a 'lighter' approach to the 'importance' of continuing or wanting their children to continue with the Turkish identity e.g speaking Turkish. However, the limitation to this may just show the coincidental majority of views, resulting from an unrepresentative sample. For example, my sample may be full of the 'least religious' Turkish people, who in fact may be 'very English' i.e. speaking English at all times and not knowing any Turkish. However, this certainly does not mean all Turkish people who were born or live in London, act upon this way. I may have needed translators in a larger scale sample, for those who could speak very little English. The generalisation of Turkish people from London, having a greater sense of being 'English than Turkish', therefore may not all be true. In fact I did come across one lady who was born in London, however appeared as having an even stronger identity than those who weren't. One reason being, ' I feel I have to try even harder in maintaining my identity. Speaking Turkish is a way for me to do this.' (Yasemine Menevilli). ...read more.

Conclusion

I wouldn't do much to improve my study, as most of the problems I came across were inevitable through my size sample and ones that I anticipated. I would however, have got one other Turkish boy, to conduct the study with me, interviewing the male respondents and vice versa. After conducting my research I did feel I might have over interpreted too much and felt I would need to have taken a more neutral approach when interviewing. I felt my questions overall were relevant and helped me understand and drive towards my aims of what I wanted to find. I felt by me using a conversational approach, relaxed the respondents and made it seem less of an interrogation on their perceptions. Through this I felt I got a lot more out of it, than using a simple question and answer adjacency pair technique. I used a very comfortable venue (my school classroom) and most participants were interested in the coursework I was doing. Words 2729 Diary December 4th Looked for appropriate secondary data on the Internet, library etc. Found and read 'Cypriots in Haringey' from the library. December 9th Planned interview for the coming open evening e.g. what were suitable questions to ask ? etc. Roughly planned my introduction, my aims and objectives. December 13th Open Evening- Interviews were to be taken place at school 1830-2100. Venue- sociology classroom. Teas and coffees to also be provided. Gathered information from respondents and went home. December 15th Studied data received from respondents. Highlighted points made from them, similar answers etc. Roughly planned my findings. January 5th Continued working on and writing out my findings. January 14th Wrote out a first draft to my coursework. Read and checked what I had written-improved and added to it. January 15th Typed up my coursework, adding important points that were left from my draft. January 16th Carried on typing up coursework. January 17th Handed in to my English teacher to check any spelling/ grammatical errors. January 20th Corrected any mistakes highlighted. Finished coursework. ?? ?? ?? ?? Ayla D 13 DH ...read more.

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