My secondment in Santiago was a concentrated on exploring the interaction of Turkish Immigrants in Santiago with designed objects as well as with public spaces. The narratives of Turkish Immigrants about Immigration through objects was one concentration where their emotional attachment to public spaces and their experiences in public spaces was another concentration. I have made an exploratory field research with the Turkish immigrant Community in Santiago. I have continued the approach I have used in the previous secondment and at the same time, I have extended my work by developing an experimental exploration about the interaction of Turkish immigrants with public spaces in Santiago.
In semi-structured interviews, the Turkish immigrants were asked about their domestic life, their life in public spaces and their feeling of belonging. Secondly, the interviewees were asked to map out their emotional experiences in public spaces to understand which emotions public spaces elicit in Santiago.
There is a small Turkish community in Santiago. I have interviewed with a selected portion of this small community representing different social and economic backgrounds. I have accessed these people either directly by visiting their shops, recognizing their background through Turkish shop signs, or through a list prepared by the Turkish Embassy in Santiago as a kind response to my request to support to my research.
In the interviews, besides the fundamental information about their background, the Turkish immigrants are asked questions concentrating on 3 areas:
1. How is their daily life in their private sphere in Santiago? What kind of objects do they bring to Santiago, what do they use, what kinds of new habits and practices they have developed and what do they take back to Turkey? (As a reference to my previous study)
2. How do Turkish immigrants experience public spaces in Santiago? What do they think about the Public Space in Santiago? What do they do in which places and how do they exist in these places?
3. Where do they feel home? What activities or people or places remind them home?
Aside from these 3 lines of questions, I also asked them to match certain emotions with certain places. I also asked them to name the places they like and hate in Santiago so that I can mark them on a map. The analysis of these interviews will result in a map of the spatial experience of Turkish immigrants in Santiago. The result will be a collection of the narrative of the experiences of Turkish immigrants in public spaces in Santiago and an experimental legend (emotions, attachments and perceptions of Turkish immigrants towards certain places) for the map of Santiago. I am very hopeful if the same study is carried out with other immigrants from Peru, Haiti, Venezuela etc. in Santiago and some residents of the city, then we can have a much complex and multi-layered comparative map of Santiago. This experimental exploration has the potential to be extended for different communities in Santiago in particular and the framework of this exploration can be applied to other cities as well.