Among the scholars of Turkey, there is a wide-spread tendency to view post-1980s as an era of progress and liberalization that also encompasses the fom1ation of a nascent civil society. Within that context, the contemporary revival of Alevilik in Turkey, along with the revival of Sunni Islam, is believed to demonstrate how a culture based group challenges the authority of the homogeneous national identity. Thus, the increasing visibility of Alevis in the public sphere is also taken as a proof of the formation of a pluralist and multicultural environment in Turkey, in which the power of the state is diminished. Yet, this thesis aims to challenge the perspective presented above through the analysis of the contemporary Alevi politics in Corum, a provincial city with a significant Alevi minority. Indeed, according to this thesis, an investigation of the Alevi politics in Turkey overall and in Corum particularly illustrates that the Alevis reiterate the power of the state rather than confronting it by presenting themselves as progressive, democratic, liberal and secular Muslims. To put it differently, the politics of Alevi revival reinforces the relations of power between the state and the society that eventually lead to the subordination of Alevis. Along those lines, the thesis also examines the emancipatory possibilities of political strategies based on cultural identity. Thus, it argues that even though the recognition of Alevi identity is a political gain in itself, it does not automatically lead to a more pluralist society. Hence, the thesis concludes, what is needed to be accomplished is an equal distribution of resources through the transformation of political and economic institutions along with the recognition of ethnic and religious differences.
School of Humanities and Social Sciences
Middle East Studies Center
MA in Middle East Studies
Date of Award
Online Submission Date
Committee Member 1
Committee Member 2
Committee Member 3
Library of Congress Subject Heading 1
Library of Congress Subject Heading 2
The American University in Cairo grants authors of theses and dissertations a maximum embargo period of two years from the date of submission, upon request. After the embargo elapses, these documents are made available publicly. If you are the author of this thesis or dissertation, and would like to request an exceptional extension of the embargo period, please write to firstname.lastname@example.org
(2005).Contemporary Alevi Politics: The Case of Corum [Thesis, the American University in Cairo]. AUC Knowledge Fountain.
Bayrak, Hande. Contemporary Alevi Politics: The Case of Corum. 2005. American University in Cairo, Thesis. AUC Knowledge Fountain.
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 International License.