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French pop music remakes in Turkey: A cognitive semiotic inquiry into cultural transfer

Author:
  • Azize Günes
Publishing year: 2017
Language: English
Document type: Student publication for Master's degree (two years)

Summary

In this thesis, the importation, transformation and distribution of French popular music in Turkey during the 20th century have been investigated as a case study of cultural transfer. By using theories and methods within a cognitive semiotic framework, this study provides an overview of the phenomenon of French pop music remakes in Turkey by accounting for the initial situation of communication of remade pop music through recorded materials, and by providing an analysis of the changes made to the songs when transformed from French to Turkish, as well as the linguistic meanings that were made available to the Turkish public in this process. Meaning making procedures in connection to pop music have been considered by analyzing components of pop music, the cognitive capacities of human beings to understand pop music, and procedures of cultural communication enabling the integration of new artefacts in a culture. According to the results of this thesis, 160 Turkish language remakes of songs originally performed in French have been produced and distributed in Turkey between 1961- 1991. The most concentrated period of production occurred during a 10-year period between 1967-1977, with a considerable peak in 1968-1969. Of the songs produced during the peak of 1968-1969, 25% account for the original French song lyrics either as “song translations” or “adaptations” of their original French versions, transferring linguistic meanings to the Turkish target culture. A thematic analysis shows that the linguistic meanings transferred from French songs to Turkish remakes in 1968-1969 are ideas related to love, difficulties associated with love, the passing of time, memories, remembering, forgetting, nostalgia, relationships, infidelity, dependence, separation, reconciliation, and morality. Conceptualized as models of reality made available for the Turkish listener, these linguistic meanings provide options for understanding, acting in and narrating social life and the self. The meanings transferred to Turkey through the distribution of French pop music remakes are placed within a larger historical and cultural context of import and translation of Western artefacts in Turkey during the 20th century.

Keywords

  • Cultural Sciences
  • Popular music
  • song remakes
  • song adaptation
  • song translation
  • Turkey
  • Turkish pop music
  • French pop music
  • cultural transfer
  • cognitive semiotics
  • cultural communication
  • westernization

Other

  • Göran Sonesson (Prof)