The Importance Of Memory In Turkey

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Interest in memory has also been significant in Turkey, especially in academia and civil society. Esra Özyürek (2007) remarks that throughout the 1990s and into the 2000s, citizens of Turkey have started sorting out the layers of history to understand and control the present (p. 2). On the other hand, Nükhet Sirman (2006) also notes the academic and popular preoccupation with memory in the late 90s but also indicates that there has always been an interest to memory in Turkey by reminding the memoirs written since the 1950s. What is significant about the recent interest is their recourse to oral material (p. 32). Leyla Neyzi (2010) informs that an interdisciplinary field, memory studies and oral history is a fledgling research area in Turkey…show more content…
Özyürek provides an answer by emphasizing that the Turkish Republic was based on forgetting. In 1923, Turkish Republic was established on the idea of a modernist future by erasing Ottoman past. Özyürek argues that the current engagement of generations with the past allow them “to create alternative identities for themselves and their communities” (p. 2). Furthermore she observes that “in contemporary Turkey representations of the past have become metaphors through which individuals and groups define their cultural identity and political positions” (p.…show more content…
Collective and individual memories which have not been told in official history and / or changed / repressed / implemented are publicly returning in recent years. As people start to speak up, share their stories and demand for alternative histories, cultural artifacts are also being produced for fulfilling this need and demand. My aim is not analyzing either all cultural artifacts or the ways they are being told in many narrative forms but to understand how such a demand engage with the way people tell their

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