An exhibition of photographs taken in Anatolia’s Village Institutes (Köy Enstitütleri) in the 1940s and ’50s. These were the rural boarding schools set up across Turkey to increase levels of literacy: 80% of the population lived in villages, and barely 5% could read and write. The idea was to train a new generation of village boys and girls to do the teaching rather than importing teachers from the better educated cities. They would understand village needs better and teach both classical subjects and practical skills. A brave enterprise bitterly opposed by village imams and scorned by urban sophisticats, the project was scrapped after the CHP, the Republican People’s Party, lost the elections. The photographs are beautifully printed and very moving (see Cornucopia 48, out September 2012). The exhibition is accompanied by a sturdy 2-vol catalogue, which tells the story of İsmail Hakkı Tonguç, the boy from a Danube village whose brainchild the scheme was. See blog report.