Sahin, Ozcan (2016) Turkey’s Middle Eastern pendulum under contesting geopolitical mentalities and representations (1923-2010). Doctoral thesis, Keele University.

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Abstract

This project was initially born out of a curiosity to investigate why Turkey in the 2000s so fervently reclaimed itself in Middle Eastern politics. Such curiosity was further buttressed by additional questions like 'why now?', 'is this the first time?', 'has Turkey ever indicated a similar interest in the region?' and 'are there common patterns with cross government, cross
time and cross leadership explanatory power?' Thus seeking answers in a broadened perspective, a most pertinent challenge was to develop a heuristic model.

This effort brought Turkish „state culture' to the forefront. Earlier scholarly work had already provided hindsight with regards to 'strategic culture' through a security based understanding. But this time Turkish leaders' expressly geography based reasoning required further scrutiny by analysing contending geopolitical discourses from the early days of Turkey until the
present day.

This is how this research came across geopolitics in critical scholarship. As a result, the
novel perspective to analyse as to how Turkey behaves in the Middle East is centred on the premise of 'geopolitical culture'. It covers many aspects of discursive geography in which perception and representation with historical ad continuum remain two key themes.

The analyses in this study are therefore socially and historically contextual, and are not singlehandedly restricted to the views of individual Turkish leaders. The two most prominent traditions, i.e. Kemalism and Conservatism, keep producing rediscovered discourses on the global political space, Turkey‟s geography, and sense of geo-cultural belonging. What remains beneath are two distinct, competing and highly irreconcilable geopolitical mentalities to impact foreign policy in an exercise highly imbued with domestic power relations.

This is to hint at the freshness of the theoretical perspective with a particular emphasis on geographical influences on Turkish foreign policy through the prism of the Middle East.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Subjects: J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Humanities
Depositing User: Lisa Bailey
Date Deposited: 12 Apr 2017 15:46
Last Modified: 12 Apr 2017 15:46
URI: http://eprints.keele.ac.uk/id/eprint/3258

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