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Buket Türkmen

Associate Professor
Galatasaray University
The actors of Democracy Watch in Turkey: towards a non-negotiated public sphere?
01 September 2018 - 30 June 2019

Buket Türkmen has worked in the Sociology departments of Bordeaux University (2018) and of Galatasaray University in Istanbul (1997-2018). She holds her MA and PhD degrees from EHESS in Paris. Her thesis is focused on the reconstruction of the secular public space by islamist and kemalist youth in Turkey. She was a visiting scholar at the Center for Middle Eastern Studies in Harvard University in 2006. She has contributed to many comparative research projects on the public sphere, Islam and women studies, new social movements, and identity movements. She is the editor of Laicités et religiosités : Intégration ou exclusion ? (Harmattan, 2010).

Research interests

Identity movements; new social movements and alteractivism; Islam; gender; postcolonial studies

The actors of Democracy Watch in Turkey: towards a non-negotiated public sphere?

Since 2010, we have been living in a period in which new forms of activism are emerging in different societies. To the new social movements which had proposed a social imagination based on horizontality, autonomies, consensus and solidarist individualism, counter-movements responded by promoting verticality, a hierarchical society, devotion to the leader and holistic citizenship. Populist regimes support these counter-movements. Inviting parts of the population to the streets and banning demonstrations of the others go hand in hand with this new type of populist authoritarianism which tries to provide an appearance of respect for democracy, represented by “the street”. To be able to understand this phase of democracy and street politics, we will analyze the case of Turkey’s “democracy watches”, after the Coup attempt on July 15, 2016. We look at democracy watches and its actors to find the relevant keys to understand the new unitarian public space in Turkey. The public space, defined as a sphere of deliberation by Habermas, becomes the non-deliberative reflection of the government’s will in the new period. The new regime is consolidated today under the State of Emergency. I consider the case of Turkey, besides its characteristics inherited from its political history, as an example that reveals a shift in the global political imagination from democracy to the new authoritarianisms. In continuity with a previous research based on a fieldwork realized with actors of democracy watches in 2016, I aim to understand the relationship between the Street and the new authoritarian regime and its repercussions on today's political subjectivities.

19 Jun 2019 10:30 -
19 Jun 2019 18:30,
Paris :
Le régime politique et la rue : du néo-populisme à la dérive autoritaire dans les démocraties
17 May 2019 11:00 -
17 May 2019 13:00,
Paris :
What kind of civil society wants an authoritarian state? Evidence from governmental support for NGOs in Russia
Buket Türkmen presents her research project within the framework of the weekly internal seminar
12 Mar 2019 10:00 -
12 Mar 2019 13:00,
Paris :
The actors of Democracy Watch in Turkey: towards a non-negotiated public sphere?
21 Feb 2019 18:00 -
21 Feb 2019 20:00,
Paris :
Mouvements sociaux et régime politique en Turquie depuis Gezi : Alter-activisme, subjectivation et désubjectivation
Talk by B. Türkmen, 2018-2019 Paris IAS fellow
16 Oct 2018 17:00 -
16 Oct 2018 19:00,
Bordeaux :
Liberté d’expression et le nouveau populisme en Turquie
Research project: "The actors of Democracy Watch in Turkey: towards a non-negotiated public sphere?"
Contemporary period (1789-…)
North Africa, Middle East