The Kurdish Question in Turkey: New Perspectives on Violence, Representation and Reconciliation

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Cengiz Gunes, Welat Zeydanlioglu
Routledge, Sep 23, 2013 - Political Science - 288 pages

Almost three decades have passed since political violence erupted in Turkey’s south-eastern regions, where the majority of Turkey’s approximately 20 million Kurds live. In 1984, the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) initiated an insurgency which intensified in the following decades and continues to this day. Kurdish regions in Turkey were under military rule for more than a decade and the conflict has cost the lives of 45,000 people, including soldiers, guerrillas and civilians. The complex issue of the Kurdish Question in Turkey is subject to comprehensive examination in this book.

This interdisciplinary edited volume brings together chapters by social theorists, political scientists, social anthropologists, sociologists, legal theorists and ethnomusicologists to provide new perspectives on this internationally significant issue. It elaborates on the complexity of the Kurdish question and examines the subject matter from a number of innovative angles.

Considering historical, theoretical and political aspects of the Kurdish question in depth and raising issues that have not been discussed sufficiently in existing literature, this book is an invaluable resource for students and scholars of Nationalism and Conflict, Turkish Politics and Middle Eastern politics more broadly.


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Turkey and the Kurds
1 The role of the judicial system in the politicide of the Kurdish opposition
2 The representation of the Democratic Society Party DTP in the mainstream Turkish media
Newroz as a myth
Ethnography of political violence and the Kurdish struggle in Turkey
5 Redefining the role of women within the Kurdish national movement in Turkey in the 1990s
6 Taking to the streets Kurdish collective action in Turkey
7 Repression or reform? An analysis of the AKPs Kurdish language policy
The Kurdistan Workers Party and the reinvention of democracy
The Kurds as a case
10 Music and reconciliation in Turkey
Limits of the AKPs democratic initiative
Challenges and prospects

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About the author (2013)

Cengiz Gunes is the author of The Contemporary Kurdish National Movement in Turkey: From Protest to Resistance (London: Routledge, 2012). His main research interests are in identity and nationalism, peace and conflict studies and the international relations of the Middle East.

Welat Zeydanlioglu is the coordinator of the Kurdish Studies Network and the managing editor of the peer-reviewed journal Kurdish Studies. He has published several articles on the Kurdish question, state violence as well as on the politics of nation-building and modern Turkish and Kurdish history.

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