For a week now, Turkey has been the scene of debates regarding three texts.
These are: the "Apology to Armenians" campaign, "Being Different in Turkey: Alienation on the Axis of Religion and Conservatism," a joint study by the Open Society Institute (OSI) and Boğaziçi University, and the Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV) report, "A Roadmap for the Solution of the Kurdish Question: Policy Suggestions to the Government from the Region."
A report released early this week by the Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV) titled “Recommendations from the Region to the Government,” which provided the government with suggestions on ways to resolve Turkey’s Kurdish problem, has brought the decades-long problem to the agenda once again.
Everyone is discussing the research conducted by Professor Binnaz Toprak, who was engaged by the Open Society Institute (OSI) to conduct her research.
Turkey has been talking about Binnaz Toprak’s research for days. Yes, the scientific value of the report may be controversial.
Is there a "neighborhood pressure" on people with secular lifestyles in Turkey’s conservative towns? Are they, for example, harassed for drinking alcohol or wearing shorts?
You bet. Most Anatolian cities have a pretty illiberal culture in which everybody is expected to subscribe to norms of "appropriate" dress code or behavior. That’s one reason why I rather live in Istanbul Ñ which is not a beacon of liberty, either, but at least much more diverse.
A recent survey on "Being Different in Anatolia," supported by the prestigious Boğaziçi University and the Open Society Institute, highlighted this problem. It was directed by political scientist Binnaz Toprak – my university professor – who led a team of three journalists which interviewed 401 people in 12 different cities of Anatolia such as Konya, Kayseri, Trabzon or Batman. All of the interviewed were specially chosen from groups with secular lifestyles: members of the Society for Kemalist Thought, CHP organizations, Alevis, student associations, feminist clubs, etc. And they told that they felt themselves under the pressure of the conservative and sometimes outright bigoted "neighborhood"s.
A report was recently published on the Kurdish question by the Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV).
ANKARA – The country’s top court has dealt a setback to government efforts to meet European Union accession requirements by annulling an ombudsman law designed to hold public authorities to account.
an older op-ed:
Thursday’s opinion poll regarding Turkish civil society and their evaluation of politics, terror and other matters opens the door to a vital and, until very recently, missing debate here in Turkey.