Writing a Letter
Lesson 133beginner Turkish Beginner
Writing a Letter
Dear Turkish learner - won't you please join us for some tea and Turkish this evening? Sincerely, Turkish Tea Time
How to write a letter.
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everything in this lesson?
In English we end our formal letters "Yours sincerely" if we address the recipient by name, but "Yours faithfully" if we don't know their names and have just addressed them as
"Dear Sir/Madam."
I am guessing that there is no difference in Turkish i.e "Saygilarimla" could be used in either case ?

Just a minor point, when you hover over "samimi" in the Dialog Section it comes up as "formal"
Feb 25, 2014
Öğrenci, Eva
In the Review:
The name "Ezgi Toker" ist not clear, if it refers to a woman or a man, because I never heard that name before.
So I tried for female version for good luck.

Very nice lesson! Thanks a lot for all of that!
Feb 25, 2014
@Frank - I've never head that distinction made before. Very interesting! Right - saygılarımla and sayın are both gender neutral. (And thanks - I'll go fix that now.)

@Eva - ha, good point. Though, we do use the name Ezgi in the language points in a way that identifies it as female. Thanks for checking in! :)
Feb 25, 2014
Hi Justin and Busra, how is 'bayan' politically charged?
Many thanks for the really enjoyable and helpful lessons :)
Feb 26, 2014
Good question. I don't pretend to completely understand since it's an issue tied so tightly to culture. Most Turks don't seem to really care at all, but for the more progressive-minded, it goes like this (I just called my activist Turkish friend to make sure I have it straight):

The word "bayan" is used as a polite address for a woman. This implicitly implies that "kadın" is somehow a word that needs to be made polite or more lady-like. Traditionally, Turkish has used the word "kız" to refer to women that haven't had sex, while "kadın" refers to a woman who has. The thought is 1. this is sexist considering that there is no similar distinction made for men, and 2. that it is offensive for a word to imply that being a woman who has had sex is in any way shameful.

There are other polite addresses for women that don't carry this nuance - like hanım.

You'll often see "bay" and "bayan" used on bathroom doors, for example. That's innocent enough. But you'll often see "erkek" used with "bayan" - as if "kadın" is not polite enough in some way. Progressives would just prefer "erkek-kadın."

It's all very subtle and, like I said, most people don't give it a second thought. But when you pause to think of the underlying implications of where these words come from and how they're used, I do think these are very interesting points.
Feb 27, 2014
Thanks Justin, very interesting and helpful. I've found that there's a similar distaste with some, for the word 'woman' in English, not even sure what the word 'lady-like' would mean to most people in my own (UK) culture. Have to say I'm with the progressives on this one. :)
Mar 02, 2014
Hello Isabel, Iyi aksamlar Justin ve Busra... Interesting. Reminds me of Frau (+last name) and Fräulein (little Frau + last name) when addressing married/unmarried women in Germany. No more. All women are addressed as Frau (+last name) nowadays. Makes sense really ... You had Frauleins that were 90 years old and Fraus that were just 18. In my day, some women in the UK objected to being called a lady because a. it is a nobility term and offended some republican women and b. it assumes nice behaviour that may require a lady to only have a half pint instead of a pint of bitter (beer is always a good example). à la women have more fun than ladies. Glad sexism is being ironed out all around the globe. Mükemmel! Teşekkürler!
Apr 04, 2014
Çoban Köpeği
Thank you Frank for informing us about something which, as a 38 year old Englishman, I should probably have known already :) I too, like Justin, had never been aware of this distinction regarding the correct usage of 'Yours sincerely' and 'Yours faithfully'. I have always used them interchangeably, but the definitions provided by Cambridge Dictionaries Online do indeed validate your version. Not only is this site fantastic for learning Turkish, it now seems to be doing wonders for improving my English too :)
May 16, 2015
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