*Are you one of those that we couldn’t turn into Stambouliote?
– Where are you from, kızım?
– I’m from Istanbul, amca.
– No, I mean, where you really are from.
It is quite quotidian for me to have a dialog like this one, while exchanging words with people in Istanbul. Today, I guess people born here are minor than those who came to the city afterwards.
Since the middle of the twentieth century, people from all over the country have started to migrate to Istanbul.
As all industrial, cultural and economical strategies were centered upon this shining city with very few investment to other parts of the country, people came to İstanbul with hopes of wealth, fame or just a better life. They left their families, homes and habits to open a new page.
Some people made it, some not. But almost all stayed.
Istanbul had enough love for everybody but love did not bring happiness for all. The infrastructures were not sufficient, the jobs not satisfying and politicians not visionary. Thus the city has started to change her face.
People have maybe come to love her, to live her, to be a part of her. But within the time, some have turned into crazy platonic lovers who decide to kill the loved ones when being rejected. The city has become, day by day, full of people who want to conquer her.
Until today, many still didn’t develop an intimate relation with her. They don’t feel they belong to her. There I find some of the reasons of her depression.
I find myself often dreaming about the future, in another İstanbul where more people are proud of being a part of her and they turn her head, as she keeps turning ours since thousands of years.
By our former writer: Beste Kuşçu