The founder of modern Turkey, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, came to power in 1923 with a radical and wide-ranging programme of reforms, known collectively as Kemalism. This philosophy - which included adopting a western alphabet and securing a secular state apparatus - has since the early 1930s, when the Turkish state endeavored to impose a monolithic definition of the term, been connected to the development of the personality cult of Mustafa Kemal himself.
This book argues that in fact Kemalism can only be fully understood from a transnational perspective: just as a uniquely national frame is not the only appropriate scale of analysis for shedding light on the process of the nationalization of societies and nationalism itself, the Turkish national lens is not necessarily the most adequate one for understanding the genesis and evolution of what Kemalism stood for from the early 1920s onward.
Featuring case studies from across the former Ottoman Empire and using new primary source research, each chapter examines the different ways in which national borders refracted and transformed Kemalist ideology. Across the Balkans and the Middle East Kemalism influenced the development of language and the alphabet, the life of women, the law, and everyday dress. A particular focus on the interwar period in Turkey, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Albania, Yugoslavia, and Egypt reveals how, as a practical tool, Kemalism must be relocated as a global movement, whose influence is still felt today.
Publisher: I.B. Tauris & Co. Ltd.
Number of pages: 368
Weight: 566 g
Dimensions: 216 x 138 mm