Literature of Historical Geography in Turkey


Historical geography, briefly defined as the geography of the past, means researching a place in the past with the principles and methods of modern geography. Although it appeared in the beginning of the XVIII. century in the world, historical geography entered the Turkish geography literature in the second half of the XIX. Century thanks to the authors who prepared books by making translations from Western Works. In this case, these researches that started after Tanzimat seem to be completely forgotten after a while the proclamation of the Republic. The historical geography, which become available after the introduction of W. M. Ramsay's "Historical Geography of Anatolia" in our language, couldn’t base on scientific foundations due to the fact that our geographers couldn’t follow the west closely and other factors.  Although some works were prepared with this name again towards the 1990s, modern historical geography examples had been obtained with the studies which has been done since 2000.

In this article, the studies named historical geography and the anthology made from the works evaluated in this context although the name is different, have been examined from the beginning which was written in this field in Turkey. As a result of the evaluation and as much analysis as possible, studies of historical geography are grouped in two ways in our country. The first one has been examined in three sections, taking into account its qualities and chronological developments; The second one has been examined in six sections considering the sources, methods and structural features. In this way, as the history of historical geography is examined analytically in our country, some information has been given for the present situation of historical geography research and some predictions have been made about its future. Considering all the work, it will be seen that Turkey's historical geography studies unfortunately fall behind the West today. Changing this situation is only possible by doing more research within the framework of modern historical geography methods. When historical diversity and richness of cultural heritage of Turkey is considered, the research in this field is very clear and awaits young researchers who will work hard to move our level forward.


Key words: Turkey, Historical geography, History of geography, methodology, chronological classification, analytical classification

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