Conference on “Words’ Archeology; Languages, Monumental Inscriptions and History”
Conference on “Words’ Archeology; Languages, Monumental Inscriptions and History” held in Kazakhstan
A conference entitled “Words’ Archeology; Languages, Monumental Inscriptions and History” and dedicated to the 175th anniversary of the famous Kazak scholar Abai was held in Almaty, Kazakhstan.
The conference hosted by the “Center for the Rapprochement of Cultures” was held with the participation of TURKSOY and gathered linguists, literature experts and researchers along with many representatives of various universities.
The opening speech of the conference moderated by the Director of the International Institution of Kazak Language Erden Kajybek was delivered by the famous Kazak author Mr. Oljas Suleymenov, Director of the Center for the Rapprochement of Cultures which operates under the auspices of UNESCO. In his speech, Mr. Suleymenov said that language plays a key role in the transmission of peoples’ history from one generation to the next. Mr. Suleymenov further said that words are the most important relicts of our history and that the ethymologic roots of words we use in our language make it possible for us to explore our past history. Mr. Suleymenov concluded his speech saying that this conference is also a Pioneer contribution to the creation of a new method regarding linguistic research.
In the opening speech he delivered at the conference, the Deputy Secretary General of TURKSOY Assoc. Prof. Dr. Bilal Çakıcı stressed that the title “Words’/Language’s Archeology” is a magical title for this meeting as it calls upon deep reflexions on the Notion of language which is the most important means of communication among humans and yet remains a concept the mysteries of which are still to be elucidated. Mr. Çakıcı who also drew attention to the fact that the subject “language/words” which is closely linked to the mission statement of TURKSOY is being dealt with in a special conference further said: “Language has also been the most important factor leading to the establishment of TURKSOY. As an organization, we are in some way trying to carry out archeological research activities on the language, culture and art of our member countries which speak the same language and while doing this we try to decipher the codes of our common culture, art and language. Throughout history, this common heritage of ours was split apart in time and disappeared in the dust-covered pages of our past. Now we are unveiling this common heritage and trying to get acquainted with eachother under the motto “unity in language, ideas and deeds”. Within this framework, we attach particular importance to TURKSOY member countries and to the literature heritage of Turkic speaking peoples and this is why we are committed to foster interaction among our languages which evolved throughout history and display some different characteristics in terms of phonetics and morphology. In this respect, I would like to stress that commemorative years declared by TURKSOY as well as its conferences on pioneers of the Turkic World and its translations are in fact concrete steps taken towards the successful realization of this commitment.”
The Deputy Minister of Culture and Sports of Kazakhstan Nurkisa Daueshov who reminded of a statement made by the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan Kasım-Jomart Tokaev who stressed that in order to overcome obstacles preventing development one must be aware of one’s national values and that the failure to preserve one’s mother tongue and national awareness will never be excused by future generations.
The Deputy President of the People’s Assembly of Kazakhstan Janseyit Tuymebayev who also said a few words stressed the importance of the establishment of a “National Language Department” in terms of the preservation of Kazak culture and its heritage. Mr. Tuymebayev who also drew attention to the richness of the Kazak language which features approximately 300 million words expressed his belief in the fact that this conference entitled “Words’ Archeology; Languages, Monumental Inscriptions and History” will also be a contribution to linguistic research activities as well as to methodological research aiming at the development of language.
The conference went on with paper presentations by scholars from Kazakhstan, Central Asia, Western Europe, Turkey, the USA and Russia.