Why does a familiar bird and favorite Thanksgiving day meal have the same name as the country of Turkey? What is the name for the turkey in other languages? Is there any link between the spread of turkeys into the Anglophone world and the Ottoman Empire? In this episode, we answer these questions and discuss more broadly the historical context within which the turkey and other foods such as potatoes and corn became part of global diets.
Chris Gratien is a PhD candidate studying the history of the modern Middle East at Georgetown University (see academia.edu)
Citation: "Turkey: a Bird and a Country," Chris Gratien, Ottoman History Podcast, No. 80 (November 20, 2012) http://www.ottomanhistorypodcast.com/2012/11/turkey-bird-history-thanksgiving-america.html
List of names for the Turkey in other languages
Smith, Andrew F. The Turkey: An American Story. Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 2006.
Crosby, Alfred W. The Columbian Exchange: Biological and Cultural Consequences of 1492. Westport, Conn: Greenwood Press, 1972.
Hobhouse, Henry. Seeds of Change: Six Plants That Transformed Mankind. [Washington, D.C.]: Shoemaker & Hoard, 2005.