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Sylvia W Onder


Visiting Associate Professor, Turkish


Georgetown College
General profile



+1 202-687-6175


Dr. Sylvia Wing Önder has been teaching Turkish Language and Culture at Georgetown since the Fall Semester of 1998, when she created Georgetown's first Intensive Beginning Turkish class (6 credits per semester) and developed Intermediate and Advanced levels for growing numbers of students. Along with language classes, she has taught a range of classes in Turkish Culture, Cultural Anthropology, Central Asian Cultures, and seminars for the School of Foreign Service's Culture and Politics major. She offered a new course on Medical Anthropology in the Spring and Fall of 2009. In the Spring of 2010 she will offer "Europe and Islam: Orientalist Fantasies and Turkish Realities" (Anth-436) and "Central Asian Cultures" (TURK-362).

Dr. Önder's research is primarily ethnographic, including long term stays in a Turkish Black Sea village to study women's lives and traditional healing practices. Her current research interests include political cartoons, popular music videos, and political and artistic expressions of Turkish youth groups in Turkey and in Germany.

Dr. Önder has served for several years as Co-Director for the State Department's CAORC Turkish Critical Language Scholarship program, which has allowed up to 52 students from around the United States to study Turkish in the summer.


  • Ph.D. (1998) The Ohio State University, Turkish Culture, Interdisciplinary
  • M.A. (1991) University of Pennsylvania, Folklore and Folklife
  • B.A. (1982) University of Pennsylvania, International Relations


  • Turkish (speak, read, write)