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By Ahmad Feroz

Turkey is the 1st sleek secular country in a predominantly Islamic heart East. during this significant textbook, Feroz Ahmad presents an intensive exam of the political, social and monetary techniques which ended in the formation of a brand new Turkey. After a bankruptcy on "the Ottoman Legacy", the e-book covers the interval because the revolution of 1908 and the improvement of the recent Turkey. Successive chapters chart the growth in the course of the single-party regime manage by way of Ataturk (1923-1945), the multi-party interval (1945-1960) and the 3 army interventions of 1960, 1971 and 1980. The ebook results in 1989 with the election of Turgat Ozal as president. unlike most modern analyses of contemporary Turkey, the writer emphasises the socio-economic alterations instead of continuities because the motor of politics.

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We may be able to arrive at a proper judgement regarding its legacy if we follow the historical evolution of the dynasty over six long centuries. The Ottoman state, which grew into a world empire by the fifteenth century, began its life as a suzerain of a branch of the great Seljuqs 15 16 The making of modern Turkey who advanced into Anatolia and defeated a Byzantine army at the battle of Manzikert in 1071. Thereafter, the Seljuqs and their tribal levies continued to advance into Anatolia and founded a dynasty known as the Seljuqs of Rum.

The Ottoman state suffered from the paradox of being too powerful and stable to make the structural adjustments necessary to meet the challenge of dynamic and innovative Europe. Spain and Russia faced a similar predicament; they too lacked the social and institutional flexibility and therefore failed to provide an adequate response and, like the Turks, lagged behind their rivals. For their part, the sultans were convinced that they could meet the Western challenge through piecemeal reform, especially the reform of their army.

But it again became the prevailing view after 1945 and continues to be so in the early 1990s. 14 The Tanzimat reformers were sophisticated enough to tailor some Western theories to their own environment. They did not see the role of the state as that of nightwatchman, as liberal theory required; the state had to be interventionist—the state as social engineer—so as to transform society. The Anglo-Ottoman Commercial Convention of August 1838 was perhaps the first conscious step taken by the reformers to destroy existing social and economic structures in order to make way for new ones.

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