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Societal challenges to the state. Islamic movements in Turkey. Islam & the Turkish state. Muslim citizenry Turkey as “secular state” Abolition of Caliphate in 1924 Mustafa Kemal Ataturk & the “six arrows” of Kemalism Islam as “backwards” Multi-party period, 1950 onwards

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societal challenges to the state

Societal challenges to the state

Islamic movements in Turkey

islam the turkish state
Islam & the Turkish state
  • Muslim citizenry
  • Turkey as “secular state”
    • Abolition of Caliphate in 1924
    • Mustafa Kemal Ataturk & the “six arrows” of Kemalism
      • Islam as “backwards”
    • Multi-party period, 1950 onwards
    • Interventions: Three (four?) military coups
      • Fundamentalism as internal enemy
islamic groups in turkey an overview
Islamic groups in Turkey: an overview
  • Diverse, mostly moderate
  • Islamic political parties
    • Refah (Welfare)
      • Coalition partner 1995-1997
    • Adalet ve Kalkinma Party (Justice & Development, or the AK Party)
      • Current ruling party (since 2002)
      • Moderate, progressive Islamic
        • Split from “traditionalist” Islamist party in 2001
  • Other Islamic orgs
    • Sufi orders
    • Nurcu movement
      • Said Nursi (1873-1960)
      • Gulen community (Fethullahcilar)
slide4
AKP
  • “One of the main principles of our Party is the proverb, ‘Unless everyone is free, no one is free’. Our Party considers as one of its most important tasks, the assurance of democratization by placing the individual at the center of all its policies, and to provide and protect fundamental human rights and freedoms.
  • Our Party constitutes a ground where the unity and the integrity of the Republic of Turkey, the secular, democratic, social State of law, and the processes of civilianization, democratization, freedom of belief and equality of opportunity are considered essential.”
  • AK Party Program. For more see: http://www.akparti.org.tr/
fethullacilar when who
Fethullacilar: When & Who
  • Nurcu offshoot
  • Fetullah Gulen (hocaefendi)
    • born in Erzurum, 1938; Islamic preacher
    • “Best religious story teller in Turkey”
  • Phases:
    • 1960s-1970s Building a core group of spiritually motivated supporters
    • 1980s-1990s transnational education movement
    • 200,000- 4 million supporters by 1990s
          • young professional men
fethullacilar what
Fethullacilar: What

Islamic-scientific synthesis through education

Personal and social transformation through education and use of the public sphere

Turkish-Islamic nationalist synthesis

Turco-Ottoman nationalist

Discourse of democracy, human rights

Pro-State

Rejects politicization of Islam

religion a private matter and its requirements should not be imposed on anyone.

when Islam is mixed with politics it becomes polluted

Unequivocal rejection of violence

re-establish link between religion and the state by having state leaders privately practice Islam.

Emphasis on tolerance and inter-faith dialogue

Faith before Islam

Status of women

fethullacilar how
Fethullacilar: How
  • vast educational, charity and financial network
    • own and run more than 300 schools worldwide
    • Financial institutions (Asya Finans)
  • large media empire
    • Newspapers and TV stations
  • Books, cassettes, columns, videos, web sites
  • state-society relationship
    • Briefly jailed in the 1970s and sermons banned until 1986; today has good working relationships with many political parties and secular leaders of the establishment
    • Supportive of military-led efforts to combat political Islam in Turkey
    • Some persecution after 1997
  • Watch a Fethullah Gulen video at these links:
      • http://www.fgulen.org/ (English)
      • http://www.m-fgulen.org/a.page/multimedya/c782.html (Turkish)
    • Recent Interviews with Gulen: http://www.zaman.com/?bl=national&alt=&hn=6681
slide8

Above left, Gulen at a meeting of the Turk Ocaklari; above right, with the late Pope John Paul II; bottom left, with David Aseo, the late chief rabbi of the Jewish community in Turkey, 1996. Photos from

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