Dossier: Turkey

A woman photographs one of Istanbul's new rainbow steps (photo: AFP/Getty Images)

Art and protest in Turkey

Poking fun at the sultan

For about a year now, Turkey has been experiencing one of its worst ever political crises. It is a situation that has given the country's art scene a chance to flourish and to exercise its creativity in protest. However, such activity often entails the risk of serious consequences. By Senada Sokollu in IstanbulMore

Portrait of the Turkish painter Osman Hamdi Bey with his daughter Nazli (photo: Cretanforever)

Turkish art in Germany

A reading Arab pulls in the crowds

His paintings fetch record sums in Turkey. Now the works of Osman Hamdi Bey are pulling in the crowds at Berlin's Alte Nationalgalerie, much to the delight of its young director. By Julia VossMore

Bandista in concert at the SO36 in Berlin (photo: Ceyda Nurtsch)

The Turkish music collective Bandista

"Every resistance movement has its own voice"

The music collective Bandista combines ska, dub and ethno sounds with a left-wing political message. With their catchy melodies and rhythms, they have become an essential part of street protests in Turkey. By Ceyda NurtschMore

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan waves to supporters from the balcony of the AKP's headquarters (photo: AP)

Local elections in Turkey

Carte blanche for a crackdown

The election result in Turkey was barely affected by last summer's Gezi Park protests, recent accusations of corruption against the ruling AKP and the on-going open conflict with the Gulen Movement. This is primarily due to the nation's economic situation and the fact that the AKP now controls most of the country's media outlets. By Ekrem Guezeldere in IstanbulMore

Gezi Park activists in Istanbul (photo: dpa/picture alliance)

Book review: "Taksim is everywhere"

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"This was a social uprising, not simply some demonstration"

Deniz Yuecel, a journalist for the German daily newspaper "taz", interviewed 96 different protesters for his first book, "Taksim ist Ueberall" (Taksim is Everywhere), which was recently published in Germany instead of in Turkey. In view of the fact that the writer Erol Oezkoray was taken to court for allegedly insulting Prime Minister Erdogan in his book on the Gezi phenomenon, this is perhaps a good thing. Luise Sammann introduces the book and its authorMore

An opponent of the AKP government holds up two posters of Prime Minister Erdogan with the slogan "Big thief" (photo: Reuters)

Eleven years of Erdogan

Hard times for the "champion" of political Islam

As everything points to a clear victory for the AKP in Turkey's local elections, Turkish political scientist Cengiz Aktar takes stock of 11 years of Erdogan's rule. He says that Turkey's political and economic problems are home made and are caused by the fact that the AKP has been in power for too long and Erdogan's growing inability to enter into political co-operation. Nevertheless, he cautions against celebrating the downfall of political IslamMore

Teacher and pupils in a Turkish class (photo: Andrea Groß)

The Turkish language in Germany

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Turkish is booming at schools and universities

An increasing number of young people in Germany are taking Turkish at school. The German–Turkish Year of Science hopes to further boost this trend. At present, only native speakers can take the subject at schools, but this is about to change. By Andrea GroßMore

Amy Chua (photo: Prakash Singh/AFP/Getty Images)

Book review: Amy Chua and Jed Rubenfeld on immigrant culture

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Attack of the power migrants

Amy Chua and Jed Rubenfeld pledge to lift the lid on the cultural secrets of success of certain immigrant groups in the US. According to Daniel Bax, their book is nothing more than an exercise in cod folk psychologyMore

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses an AKP rally in Elazig, Turkey, on 6 March 2014 (photo: picture-alliance/AP Photo)

Local elections in Turkey

An erosion of Erdogan's legitimacy

Turkey is holding nationwide local elections on 30 March. The prime minister, mired in growing corruption allegations, has turned the polls into a referendum on his rule. With such high stakes, the vote is widely seen as one of the most important in the country's history. Dorian Jones has more from IstanbulMore

Fethullah Gulen (dpa/picture-alliance)

The Gulen movement in Germany

Dogma instead of dialogue

Opaque structures and ambiguous objectives are not conducive to the education of the young. This is why the Gulen movement must be monitored more closely, writes Ursula RuessmannMore

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan (photo: picture-alliance/AP Photo)

Corruption scandal in Turkey

"The evaporation of the Turkish state as we know it"

A series of alleged telephone recordings between the Turkish prime minister and members of his family has escalated an ongoing political crisis to unprecedented levels, with many now fearing for the state of the country's democracy. By Dorian Jones in IstanbulMore

Crimean Tatars demonstrate against the possibility of Crimea becoming part of Russia (photo: dpa/picture-alliance)

Crimean Tatars in Ukraine

Deep-seated fears

The Crimean Tatars, numbering some 250,000, are the third largest demographic group in Crimea. They fear that their rights will be sharply curtailed should the referendum on 16 March turn out in Russia's favour. Fear of Putin and his supporters is equally palpable amongst the millions of Crimean Tatars living in Turkish exile. By Luise SammannMore

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan visiting Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on 29 January 2014 (photo: MEHR)

Turkish–Iranian relations

"Zero problems" with the Islamic Republic

Even at the height of diplomatic tensions with Iran and after an intensification of sanctions against the country, Turkey did not fall in with the West's strict line on Iran. Sinan Ulgen explains whyMore

A newsreader prepares to read the news on a DITIB television programme in the German city of Duisburg (photo: DW/U. Hummel)

Interview with Kerem Öktem

Farewell to the "Islamic Vatican"?

Diyanet, Turkey's state-run Directorate General for Religious Affairs, is often referred to as a kind of Islamic "mini-Vatican". The Ankara-based authority seeks to shape the religious lives of Turkish Muslims living in Western Europe. In Germany, the Turkish Islamic Union for Religious Affairs (DITIB), a federation of almost 900 mosque communities, is closely allied with Diyanet. Claudia Mende asked German scholar Kerem Öktem of St Anthony's College Oxford to what extent Ankara influences debates about religious matters in GermanyMore

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan (photo: dpa/picture-alliance)

The Erdogan administration

Turkey's paradigm shift

Since coming to power 12 years ago, Turkey's Justice and Development Party (AKP) has launched the most far-reaching process of democratisation the country has ever known and facilitated an unprecedented economic upswing. According to Cemal Karakas, however, it has not all been positive; there have been some worrying developments too, particularly in recent yearsMore

Turkish riot police in clouds of tear gas in Istanbul during the move to clear Gezi Park on 15 June 2013 (photo: Reuters)

Culture in Turkey before and after Gezi

The end of Cool Istanbul

By bursting the bubble of mainstream discourse, there is no doubt that the Gezi protests transformed the horizon of grassroots political praxis in Turkey. Should we expect an equally drastic change in the domain of culture and the arts? After Gezi, is it still possible for the cultural industry to cling on to the easily marketable "self-Orientalising" currency that has been so fashionable over the past 10 years? By Mutlu YetkinMore

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