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A Hundred Years of Republican Turkey

A History in a Hundred Fragments

488 pages
Amsterdam University Press
On October 29, 2023, the Republic of Turkey will celebrate its centennial. The foundation of the Turkish Republic in 1923 marks the catastrophic, yet triumphant, foundation of a new nation-state as the successor of the defeated and partitioned Ottoman Empire. Until today, Turkey remains to be the center of attention due to its continued state of crisis and its position between Europe and the Middle East. In the 100 years of its history, Turkey went through multiple political and social transformations. The Kemalist origins in the Interwar years were marked by an authoritarian nation-state building in a post-imperial society with cultural reforms and modernization projects which radically constructed a new national identity and a secular ethos. The tumultuous decades during the Cold War opened a more democratic and culturally diverse field, but rapid socio-economic developments and ideological radicalization contributed to political instability, which in return legitimized Turkey’s endemic military tutelage over civilian-democratic affairs. While post-Cold War Turkey suffered from corruption and intensified identity politics, the brief moment of political stability and opening as well as the economic growth reached in the 2000s proved to be a false promise under the Justice and Development Party. Contemporary Turkey under the President Recep Tayyip Erdo.an is suffering from multiple problems resulting from the authoritarian policies of the government, Muslim-conservative vulgar populism, and an aggressive foreign policy that feeds into Muslim-Turkish nationalism at home. This volume is the first of its kind in offering a history of hundred years of Republican history through expert introductions to 100 sources on various themes of politics, economy, society, culture, gender, and arts. In doing so, this project will not only tell a truly multi-facetted history under the guidance of prominent and promising scholars of Turkish Studies, but will also allow its readers to hear voices and see images of a fascinating Republican past.
Author Bio
Alp Yenen is a university lecturer for modern history and culture of Turkey at the Institute for Area Studies at Leiden University. He works primarily on the political history of modern Turkey and the Middle East in the twentieth century. He studies transnational and transgressive politics during transitional periods, such as the end of the Ottoman Empire and the end of the Cold War. Erik-Jan Zürcher is emeritus professor of Turkish Studies at Leiden University. He is primarily interested in the period of transition from the Ottoman Empire to the Republic of Turkey and in the role of the Young Turk generation/movement in this process. He studies the emergence of modern Turkey by linking the processes of forced migration, war, imperial legacies, and nation building.