Download Occidentalism in Turkey: Questions of Modernity and National by Meltem Ahiska PDF

By Meltem Ahiska

From the early Attaturk years, Turkish radio broadcasting was once noticeable as a very good desire for sealing the nationwide identification of the hot Turkish Republic. because the inaugural broadcast in 1927, the nationwide elite designed radio broadcasting to symbolize the "voice of a nation." the following Meltem Ahiska finds how radio broadcasting really confirmed Turkey’s uncertainty over its place with regards to Europe. whereas the nationwide elite desired to construct their very own Turkish id, whilst they wanted attractiveness from Europe that Turkey used to be now a Westernized smooth kingdom. Ahiska indicates how those tensions performed out over the radio within the conflicting depictions and discrepancies among the nationwide elite and "the people," "cosmopolitan" Istanbul and "national" Ankara, and ladies and men (especially in Radio drama). via radio broadcasting we will see how Occidentalism dictated the Turkish Republic’s early heritage and formed how sleek Turkey observed itself.

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Extra info for Occidentalism in Turkey: Questions of Modernity and National Identity in Turkish Radio Broadcasting

Sample text

I said yes. He knew that I was very much interested in wireless. He had seen before wires, microphones in my house and inquired about them, and I explained to him how a 'wireless' works. Then we started recruiting people for the new task ... We were finally ready but there was no audience ...

The desire was shaped by both projection and introjection. One the one hand, the elite who embraced the duty to make the nation projected pathologies, as reflected from the viewpoint of the imagined Western gaze, to the people who needed to be civilised; and on the other hand, they introjected 'authentic' elements assumed to be embodied in the people (such as the uncontaminated traditions of the Anatolian peasantry, especially the women) as the essence of the nation. The lack in the people had to be filled by means of Western technologies, but the same process involved a rigid regulation of some undesired aspects of Western-ness, such as 'excessive Westernism'60 - that is, liberalism, immorality, and dangerous class and ethnic conflicts ascribed to the West.

Turkish identity in this context persists as a question that needs to be defined. and redefined, and which today has come to take on new variations in the ongoing negotiations with the European Union. 56 But at this point, I would like to give my argument a new twist and claim that it is not merely non-knowledge, but instead 'knowing too much yet pretending not to know this' which defines Occidentalist political subjectivity in its specificity. registers of truth in Turkey. Those practices that seem - from the virtual viewpoint of the Western gaze - not logical and suitable to be included in the domain of the sayable - in other words, the practices performed at the limits of the discourse (as in the case of the missing archives) - pierce reality.

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