The Social Basis of Secularism: From Late-Ottomans to Early Republic Period

By Ahmed Baran Dural and Gürkan Ozan Tekin.

Published by The Humanities Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

The traditional Turkish pragmatism politics which carried the Turks from the Central Asia to Asia Minor and then the Europe created a relation between the state and the religion where religion was always a means in the hands of the state. In the Turkish state tradition, religion is a dependent variant of the leaders of the state where it is an active means for the dominion of the state. The claim that Turks adopted the idea of “Ilay-ı Kelimetullah” (to sublimate the name of Allah in the universe) is only an act which Turkish statesmen used to legalize their imperial visions rather than promoting Islam. So the universal state mentality of Turks derived from the mythology of traditional philosophy of state, not from Islam itself. On the other hand the breaking point in Turkish history which carried the nation to the laic principles was the Kemalist era. Many Republican intellectuals argue that to resist secularism means to resist the main values, principles and objectives of the Turkish Republic (ÖZEK, 1962: 72-73) Secularism is the sprit of the new regime. Ziya Gökalp, one of the “social engineers” and the “official sociologist” of the Republic stated that Islamic community era was over any more and the idea of “ummah” actually dissolved the idea of nationality. Gökalp wanted religion to go back to its inner and personal area and it could still stay as one of the components of the Turkish nation.

Keywords: State, Secularism, Kemalism, Sultan Hamid the II., Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, Modernism, Ottoman Empire

International Journal of the Humanities, Volume 8, Issue 1, pp.97-112. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 648.354KB).

Dr. Ahmed Baran Dural

Associate Professor Doctor, Public Administration Department, Economics and Administrative Sciences Faculty, TC Trakya University, Edirne, Turkey

A. Baran Dural: Assistant Professor Doctor. Dural has a doctorate degree on the “History of New-Era Turkish Politics” and gives lectures at Trakya University Public Administration Department. Heading the Political and Social Sciences Discipline, Dural has published several books and many articles on Ataturk and some aspects of Turkish Modernization process. The titles of his boks can be stated as fellows: His Story: Mustafa Kemal and Turkish Revolution (In English-2007); Revolt and Obeisance: Turkish Conservatism and Nurettin Topcu (2005); Leadership of Ataturk (2002,2004) and Turkish Historical Novels (1991).

Gürkan Ozan Tekin

master degree student, TC Trakya University, Edirne, Turkey

Gürkan Ozan Tekin was graduated from TC Trakya University- Department of Public Administration. Heis currently a master-degree student at the same university. Tekin mainly focuses on Administrative Studies and Turkish History.

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