(2020-2021 Fall)

Turkey have had difficulties in establishing a high quality liberal democracy. Yet at the same time, she cannot, it seems, live with long term authoritarian rule either. “What are the basic factors which make it exceedingly difficult for Turkey to have a liberal democray” is the the primary question that this course deals with. In answering this question, political, economic, social, cultural and geopolitical factors, despite the fact that it is very difficult to make a clear-cut separation, will be considered. The course  will emphasize importance of elite choices without ignoring structural elements and appreciation of the fact that the same factor could play both positive and negative role in different time periods.

                        COURSE OUTLINE

  1. What is liberal democracy?     (1 week)
  2. What makes for liberal democracy ?  (1 week)
  3. A short overview of the Turkish experiment with democracy  (5 weeks)
  4. Factors which makes the establishment of liberal democracy difficult  (3 weeks)

-the “patrimonial” state tradition

-  the imprint of nation-making process

-  the centrality of state in material and non-material resource allocation.

-  the prevalence of pervasive “distrust” in society

-  the weaknesses of liberal democrat thought and tradition

                        -  the geopolitical factors

  1. Factors which make the establishment of long term authoritarian regime difficult    (3 weeks)

-relative social/political pluralism deriving from class structure and ethnic/religious composition of society

-prevalence of the idea of (relatively) limited or law-based state

-the fact that Turkey is not a rentier state

-the level of socio-economic development

-the geopolitical factors






  1. For I and II,

Christian Haerpfer, Patrick Bernhagen, Ronald F. Inglehart, Christian Welzel Democratization, second edition, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2019; Tanel Demirel, “Demokrasi ve Demokratikle┼čme Üzerine”

  1. For III, IV, V

Carter V. Findley, “The Tanzimat,” pp. 11-37; Benjamin C. Fortna, “The Reign of Abdülhamit II” pp, 38-61; M. ┼×ükrü Hanio─člu, “The Second Constitutional Period, 1908-1918” pp. 62-111; Hasan Kayal─▒, “The Struggle for Independence” pp. 112-146 all in  The Cambridge History of Turkey, vol 4, Turkey in Modern World, ed, Re┼čat Kasaba, Cambridge, CUP, 2008; ─░lter Turan, Turkey’s Difficult Journey to Democracy-Two Steps Forward, One Step Back, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2015; Ergun Özbudun, Contemporary Turkish Politics: Challenges to Consolidation, London: Lynne Rienner, 2000; Ersin Kalayc─▒o─člu, “Turkish Democracy: Patronage versus Governance,” Turkish Studies, 2, 1 (2001), pp. 54-70; Metin Heper “The ‘Strong State’ and Democracy: The Turkish Case in Comparative and Historical Perspective” In Democracy and Modernity, eds, Shmuel N. Eisenstadt, Leiden Brill, 1992; ─░lter Turan, “Stages of Political Development in the Turkish Republic”, Perspectives on Democracy in Turkey, Ankara: Turkish Political Science Association, 1988, pp.59-94; Kemal Karpat, “Türkiye’de Demokrasi Tarihi Üzerine Genel Görü┼č”  Türk Demokrasi Tarihi- Sosyal Kültürel Ekonomik Temeller, 9.bas─▒m, ─░stanbul, Tima┼č, 2017, ss. 9-70; Tanel Demirel “Demokratikle┼čme”  Türkiye’nin Uzun On Y─▒l─▒- Demokrat Parti ─░ktidar─▒ ve 27 May─▒s Darbesi, 2.bas─▒m, ─░stanbul, ─░stanbul Bilgi Üniversitesi Yay─▒nlar─▒, 2016, ss. 25-94; Ça─člar Keyder, “The Political Economy of Turkish Democracy,” Turkey in Transition-New Perspectives, In Irvin C. Shick and Ertu─črul A. Tonak, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 1987, pp. 27-65. 


                        COURSE EVALUATION


Due to the Covid 19 pandemic this will be an online course. Students are expected to participate online classes. There will be one online exam (25) a final exam (50 p). Whether final exam will be online or not, would be decided later. Students are also expected to write review of an “article” which they will chose. (25p).