The Turkish Malaise – A Critical Essay

In this ECPS Book Talks event author Dr. Cengiz Aktar, who is an adjunct professor of political science at the University of Athens, discusses his book The Turkish Malaise – A Critical Essay (Transnational Press, London, 2021) with Dr. Dirk Rochtus of KU Leuven. As most agree that no one can predict today how Turkey will evolve, which spirit will mark the country’s future. Who could have predicted the turn it has taken in recent years after having been a rising star in the early 2000s, a candidate for the European club, “the” model to follow, especially for Muslim countries seeking justice and prosperity? The failure of its candidacy, in which Europe has its share, has been the prelude to its progressive de-Westernisation accompanied by bellicosity on all fronts, at home and abroad. Western countries are trying to manage this “Turkish crisis” between incomprehension and blind detachment, between appeasement and complicity, between containment and apprehension of seeing this large country decompose in its turn. As a scholar who has witnessed Turkey’s never-ending transformation, Dr. Cengiz Aktar provides analytical tools to understand the split of a society between state, nation, religion, imperial myth, and the West in this concise and well-documented study.

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