Nationalist Incidents of 1944: The First Wave of Political Nationalism in Turkey

By Ahmed Baran Dural and Burak Gümüş.

Published by The Humanities Collection

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

The 1940s were the hardest years for Turkish political life. After Atatürk, the “first man”,
passed away; İsmet İnönü, the “Second Man”, who was the new leader of the Republic of Turkey, made
an effort to place the governance principles of the late “charismatic” leader on bureaucratic and rational
grounds. Although the Republican People’s Party (CHP) placed itself on the “centre left” so as to
have an ideological ground, it gave importance to nationalist ideology.
However, the nationalist elites who aimed to politicise a nationalism which was not dependant
upon the state and to bring it together with the masses were creating a new nationalistic
coding system to criticise the rituals of the “State Nationalism” in order to get together, but not under
CHP. Those who study the Nationalist incidents of 1944 and the rise of political nationalism share a
misjudgement about nationalism. They state that Turkish nationalism arose in 1939 and afterwards,
and that it was highly inspired by the German National Socialism. However, the first anxieties were
observed in the military just after the outbreak of World War II. The poor economic structure of Turkey
worried nationalist elites and mid-level military officers. Both of these groups had serious
worries about the mission of CHP. Adding the socialist ideas originating from the USSR and their
extension to Anatolian geography to the above-mentioned realities, the nationalist reaction arose.

Keywords: State Nationalism, CHP, 1944 Nationalist Incidents, Pan-Turkism, Nihal Atsız, Alparslan Türkeş

International Journal of the Humanities, Volume 9, Issue 9, pp.271-284. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 786.266KB).

Dr. Ahmed Baran Dural

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

A. Baran Dural holds the rank of Associate Professor and 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.

Assoc. Prof. Burak Gümüş

TC Trakya University, Turkey, Turkey

Assist. Prof. Dr. at Trakya University, Edirne-Turkey. Gümüş has gotten his university and doctorate degree from Germany on Sociology and Politics. He works on minorities issues in the Middle East/Turkey, Turkish-German relations and political parties.

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