Away From Home

away 280Migration from rural to urban parts of Turkey, and from eastern parts of the country to the west, started to become widespread in the early 1980s. Industrialisation expelled young agricultural workers from the production cycle, and migrants started seeking their ways to the urban centers for new sources of income. It has continued since: every year, thousands of migrants leave behind their homes in sleepy towns and villages and move to Istanbul, Ankara, and other big cities.

In addition to this movement, forced migration related to the Turkey-PKK conflict took place during the 1990s, changing profoundly the social structure of Turkey’s major cities. Two and a half million people from nearly 4000 villages in eastern and south-eastern Anatolia have since migrated west, causing a disruption of lives and livelihoods in both countryside and cities.

“Nearly five years ago, I began documenting the situation for inhabitants of Eminönu, Küçükpazar, in Istanbul”, explains the photographer Kursat Bayhan. “The project Away From Home looks at a group of internal migrants who reside there. Many work as day labourers, since they lack access to higher education.

away 545c

Collecting trash and selling scrap are common jobs, which earn workers about $200 per month. Around one fourth of the wage goes to paying rent in Istanbul; after that, as much as possible is sent back to family members in the countryside.

away 545y

Most houses in Istanbul have only one room, limited supply of electricity and water, and are shared by around ten people. Only a lucky few are able to achieve the oft-sought goal of earning enough income to bring their families to live with them in the city”. 

away 545 


Kursat Bayhan

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Related Posts

Roma in Turkey: Not recognized, not protected

08/04/2015

repo tk0 110The Roma population in Turkey is not recognized as a minority, and therefore not under legal protection. Roma rights activists in Turkey fight against discriminatory rhetoric of politicians and stereotypical representation in the media and publications that feed the prejudice.

Director Neco Celik : “The word integration is like a bar of soap”

08/10/2008

Director Neco Celik : “The word integration is like a bar of soap”Gettopump, Urban Guerillas, Black Virgins: these are the names of some of the film and theatre projects of Neco Celik, a German director of Turkish descent. The FAZ am Sonntag newspaper dubbed him the German Spike Lee...

Onay Akbaş: «My heart is in two places, my country and Paris…»

13/04/2007

Onay Akba?: «My heart is in two places, my country and Paris…»Onay Akba? was born in 1963 in a Turkish village on the Black Sea. He has been living in Paris for the last twenty years and his children were born there. He welcomes us in his atelier, a pleasant place near the François Mitterand Library, in a district in full renovation where various designers, painters and creators have chosen to live.