In today’s world multiculturalism, which embraces cultural relationships on local, regional and international levels, is one of the hottest issues. Modern technologies actively promote intercultural dialogue and intercultural education. A variety of communication means make cultural exchange and learning - simple. Back in history, it was only through eyes of a traveler, who would give account of personal cultural experiences that people would learn about distant or neighboring cultures through the traveler’s oral or written narratives. Thus, the eyes of a traveler were the only source for informational exchange. It was these very travelers who lay the ground for the development of travel literature and later a literary-publicist genre thus took shape. Travel genre dates back to the 16th century in the Georgian literature. There are many examples of important works in this genre one of those being “Travelling from Tbilisi to Jerusalem” by Giorgi Avalishvili. These are his travel memoirs which tell us about his voyages through Turkey, Egypt, Palestine and Greece. The author not only describes ancient landmarks in these countries but also presents his observations about local peoples’ morals, customs, religious relationships and gives us important notes about the range of inhabited areas. Giorgi Avalishvili’s journey started exactly 200 years ago and lasted for a year, from July 6, 1819 to July 16, 1820. It was only in 1967 that a publication was made possible about this expedition. Our story presents only a small part of the travel. This is the part which informs the reader about the political processes in the Ottoman Empire and gives interesting accounts about the local people. There are two main highlights in this publication: •Istanbul in the 19th century Georgian travel literature; and •Turkey and the Turkish world through the eyes of a Georgian diplomat, Giorgi Avalishvili. As noted above, our present world and this journey stand two centuries apart. However, we believe that it will be exciting, as well as noteworthy, for Turkish readers to take a look at life in Turkey as seen through the eyes of a Georgian writer, who enthusiastically describes Turkish people’s customs and traditions at that period in history.
Interculturalism, travel literature, Turkish world.
|Author :||Sopio Makhatchashvili|
|Number of pages:||198-209|