Turkey and the Politics of National Identity
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Turkey and the Politics of National Identity : Social, Economic and Cultural Transformation

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In the first decade of the twenty-first century Turkey experienced an extraordinary set of transformations. In 2001, in the midst of financial difficulties, the country was under IMF stewardship, yet it has recently emerged as one of the fastest growing economies in the world. And on the international stage, Turkey has managed to enhance its position from being a backseat NATO member and outside candidate for EU membership to being an influential regional power, determining and developing its own individual foreign policy. Shane Brennan and Marc Herzog explore how these and other changes have shaped the way people in Turkey perceive themselves and how the country's self-image shapes its actions. In the modern age, the sovereign nation-state still continues to be one of the basic building blocks of social or political identity. The Turkish Republic, founded in 1923, is a good example. In weaving together and selecting certain elements of memory, myth, tradition and symbols, the narratives of national identity in Turkey have been, to a large extent, socially constructed.This volume offers analysis of the ways in which these narratives have been created, maintained and negotiated, and how current economic and political interests have been incorporated into the construction of a modern identity.
External forces such as those of cultural and economic globalisation have also been influential agents in this process. As a result, the space and opportunity for social and cultural expression has increasingly widened while alternative identities and life-style choices at both the collective and individual levels have also become more visible. Bearing this in mind, this book examines issues such as those of alternative gender identity and sexual orientation, formerly taboo issues. Through different approaches engaging with politics, economy, society, culture and history, Turkey and the Politics of National Identity offers new perspectives on the transformation of national identity in this increasingly influential country in the Middle East.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 344 pages
  • 138 x 216 x 38mm | 580g
  • I.B. TAURIS
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • New
  • 12 integrated bw
  • 1780765398
  • 9781780765396
  • 2,142,968

Table of contents

Introduction. Shane Brennan and Marc Herzog

Part 1: POLITICS
Chapter 1: The Concept of Turkiyeli. Baskin Oran
Chapter 2: Political Liberalization and Constitutional Changes. William Hale
Chapter 3: Turkey: A Rising Normative Power? Sevilay Aksoy

Part 2: ECONOMY AND SOCIETY
Chapter 4: Turkey's Economy and the EU. Canan Balkir
Chapter 5: Kurdish Language at Large: What has Changed? Clemence Scalbert-Yucel
Chapter 6: Minority Identities in Contemporary Turkey. Christine Allison

Part 3: CULTURE
Chapter 6: Minor Literatures and their Challenge to `National' Literature: The Turkish Case. Laurent Mignon
Chapter 7: Queering Identities in Ottoman History and Turkish Fiction. Donna Landry
Chapter 8: Kurds and the 'Kurdish Opening'. Ibrahim OEzco?ar

Part 4: PAST AND PRESENT
Chapter 9: Ottoman Influences in Society Today. Gerald Maclean
Chapter 10: Identity Formation in Contemporary Turkey: Legacies of a Pre-Turkish past. Stephen Mitchell
Chapter 11: Invisible Change: Archaeological Practices in Turkey in the New Millennium. Burcu Erciyas
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Review quote

'Turkey is emerging from almost a century of secularist nation building and tightly controlled identity policies. Yet, whether the current renegotiation of Turkishness will ultimately result in a multicultural liberal order, or whether it will lead to a comparably discriminating phase of Islamic-capitalist conservatism is by no means decided. The authors of Turkey and the Politics of National Identity provide much needed answers to this question from a wide range of disciplinary vantage points. Empirically grounded and conceptually sophisticated, this timely collection makes a crucial contribution to the debate on Turkey's social and political transformations since the turn of the millennium.' Kerem Oktem, Professor for Southeast European Studies at the University of Graz, Austria and author of Angry Nation: Turkey Since 1989 (2011) 'Turkey and the Politics of National Identity isn't simply essential reading for anyone interested in what is going on in Turkey today; it's also an invaluable guide to how new forms of social identity are shaping Turkey's future. Shane Brennan and Marc Herzog have assembled a cast of leading experts who explore how the secular idealism and nationalist certainties installed under Ataturk's republic have been coming rapidly unstuck in the new millennium...Frequently lively and invariably intelligent, often surprising and always informative, each of these essays deals with the living issues that confront Turkey's future.' Gerald MacLean, Professor of English Literature at the University of Exeter. His latest book is Abdullah Gul and the Making of the New Turkey (2014) 'Timely and insightful [this book] shed[s] critical light on the whole complexity of the identity issue in contemporary Turkey and deserve[s] to be read widely.' Clemence Scalbert Yucel, Researcher at the French Institute for Anatolian Research in Istanbul and Director of the Centre for Kurdish Studies at the University of Exeter
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About Shane Brennan

Shane Brennan is Lecturer in the Department of History at Mardin University, Turkey. He holds a PhD in Ancient History from the University of Exeter. Marc Herzog is Assistant Director of the British Institute at Ankara. Formerly a Research Associate at The Foreign Policy Centre, he holds a PhD in Politics from the University of Exeter.
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