Settlement Law of 1934: Turkish Nationalism in the Age of Revisionism
Öztan, Ramazan Hakkı
Date de parution
Journal of Migration History, Brill, 2020/6/1/82-103
There is a strong tendency in Turkish historiography to approach Kemalist policies as purely domestic affairs that emanate from the centre in a top-down manner, reflecting the clear ideological positions of Ankara. The existing scholarship on the Settlement Law (1934), too, has read the development of Kemalist demographic policies in ideological terms, framing them in top-down modernist trajectories that were long in the making since the late Ottoman times. These perspectives often remained analytically singular and nation-centred, failing to engage with the broader transnational developments that were in fact crucial to the making and timing of a range of Kemalist policies. As such, the processes of demographic engineering are framed as devoid of historical conjuncture and immune from unintended consequences or the constraints presented by state capacity. In this article, I seek to overcome such limitations by situating the Settlement Law within its due transnational context of heightened interstate rivalries since the 1930s. Unfolding in myriad ways across the borderlands of Eastern Europe, the complex dynamics of interstate competition created the necessary push and pull factors that started dislodging the Balkan Muslims from those areas coveted by various territorially revisionist states in the region. The demographic engineering their arrival triggered in Turkey, I argue, was therefore as much national as international.
Type de publication
Resource Types::text::journal::journal article
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