Insight Turkey
Insight Turkey
Challenging ideas
On Turkish politics and International affairs


Tayfun Atay

Professor of Social Anthropology and Columnist in Radikal
Tayfun Atay
The Clash of ‘Nations’ in Turkey: Reflections on the Gezi Park Incident
July 1, 2013
This article argues that the devastating mass demonstrations triggered by a humble environmentalist protest in the Gezi Park of İstanbul cannot be understood without taking into account the notion of ‘culture’. The driving force behind the demonstrations, which turned into an extensive social outburst, is cultural and rooted in the worries of the secular people of the country about the shrinking ground of their lifestyle as a result of government pressures. What happened during the weeks of Gezi Park demonstrations was actually a reaction of these people to the ‘official’ trend of intensification toward religious morality in daily life and the public space.
Ethnicity within Ethnicity’ among the Turkish-Speaking Immigrants in London
January 1, 2010
This article aims to explore multi-faceted interactions among three segments of the ‘Turkish-speaking’ immigrant community in London, composed of the Turks and the Kurds from Turkey and Turkish Cypriots. Drawing on findings of an extensive anthropological fieldwork, this paper not only documents that these sub-groups co-exist and cooperate with each other creating a sense of collective belonging to Turkish-speaking communities versus the others but also shows frictions and conflicts often occurring about ethnic, political, and ideological issues. As a result, an uneasy symbiosis exists between these sub-groups in London where they find themselves in an awkward position of existing together while not belonging to a unified group which can be described by the notion of ‘ethnicity within ethnicity’.

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