CEFTUS Online Talk “The role of religion and state identity transformation in Erdogan’s Turkey and its reflections to the Balkan Peninsula”

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CEFTUS Online Talk “The role of religion and state identity transformation in Erdogan’s Turkey and its reflections to the Balkan Peninsula” with Ahmet Erdi Öztürk and Cengiz Çandar. Moderator of the discussion is Dr Derya Bayir.

When: Friday, 5 March 2021

              19:00 GMT

In the past two decades, the transformation of Turkish foreign policy has generated a lively debate in the academic and policy circles. Turkey’s changing role in the Middle East and the Balkans has been particularly highlighted in this debate. Turkey’s foreign policy activism in the Balkans is the subject of Dr Ahmet Erdi Öztürk’s recently published book Religion, Identity and Power: Turkey and the Balkans in the Twenty-First Century. The book offers a detailed discussion of Turkey’s ethnoreligious activism and power-related political strategies in the Balkans during the Justice and Development Party (AKP) rule to determine the scopes of its activities in the region. The talk will explore some of the book’s themes and explain the role Turkey’s domestic ethnoreligious transformation has had on its relations with the Balkan Peninsula.

The event is open to all and to join you must register via the link below


After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

*The event is 1.5 hours long. The last 30 minutes will be a Q&A session.

Due to limited participation quota in Zoom event, we will be broadcasting our meeting live on Facebook as well.

Dr. Ahmet Erdi Öztürk is an associate professor and Marie Sklodowska-Curie fellow at Coventry University in the UK and GIGA in Germany (between 2021-2023) and  at London Metropolitan University. He is also an associate researcher (Chercheur Associé) at Institut Français d’Études Anatoliennes and Non-Residence Scholar at ELIAMEP’s Turkey Programme. He is the co-editor of Edinburg University Press’ Series on Modern Turkey and editor of International Journal of Religion. He was a Swedish Institute Pre and Post-Doctoral Fellow at Institute for Research on Migration, Ethnicity and Society (REMESO), at Linköping University, Scholar in Residence at the University of Notre Dame’s Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies. He is the author of more than 25 peer-review journal articles, numerous policy reports, opinion pieces and co-editor of four special issues on religion and politics and Turkish politics. Dr. Öztürk is the co-editor of Authoritarian Politics in Turkey: Elections, Resistance and the AKP (IB Tauris 2017), Ruin or Resilience? The Future of the Gulen Movement in Transnational Political Exile (Routledge 2018) and Islam, Populism and Regime Change in Turkey (Routledge 2019). In January 2021, his first solo-authored book, Religion, Identity and Power: Turkey and the Balkans in the Twenty-First Century is published by Edinburgh University Press. He is a regular contributor to media outlets such as Open Democracy, The Conversation, Huffington Post and France 24.

Cengiz Candar

Distinguished Visiting Scholar” at the Stockholm University Institute of Turkish Studies and Senior Associate Fellow at UI (The Swedish Institute for International Affairs). Winner of Abdi Ipekçi Peace Prize in 1987 for contributing to Greek-Turkish relations. A public intellectual and a leading Turkish expert on the Middle East. Served as a Special Advisor to President Turgut Özal on foreign policy (1991-1993). The main architect of the establishment of Turkish-Kurdish relations. Public Policy Scholar- Wilson Center (1999) Washington, D.C. Senior Fellow, US Institute of Peace (1999-2000), Washington, D.C. Adjunct Professor on the Modern History of the Middle East in different universities, Istanbul (1997-2010). Veteran journalist since 1976, Columnist, Al-Monitor. Author of several books in Turkish and English. His bestseller (2012) (Mesopotamian Express – A Journey in History) is published originally in Turkish and also in Arabic and Kurdish languages. His latest book entitled Turkey’s Mission Impossible: War and Peace with the Kurds (with Eugene Rogan’s Foreword) published by Lexington Books in June 2020.

Dr Derya Bayir is the author of the book Minorities and Nationalism in Turkish Law. She obtained her doctorate from the Law Department at Queen Mary. Her thesis was awarded a prize by the Contemporary Turkish Studies Chair at the LSE. Derya has litigated many cases before the European Court of Human Rights, including the prominent case of Güveç v. Turkey. She was affiliated to GLOCUL as a visiting scholar while holding a Leverhulme Research Fellowship to research secular law and religious diversity in Turkey. Her areas of research include human rights, minority rights, diversity and law, and ethno-religious diversity in Turkey’s legal system, Nationalism, Ottoman pluralism, Constitutional Law, autonomous and federal state systems.

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