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A STUDY ON THE FORMATION OF EARLY TURKISH NATIONALISM

  • Published : 2018.06.15

Abstract

Historians describe the early years of the 20th century as a period of "nationalism." During this period, Turkish nationalism transformed into a thought movement which emerged to defend Turkish national sovereignty during the collapse of the Ottoman Empire. Approaches towards nationalism in Turkey are based on the idea of national sovereignty and the ideas of national independence that developed subsequently. Nationalism in Turkey first transformed from Pan-Islamism into multinational Ottomanism, and finally developed into Turkish nationalism and patriotism. This process emerged as a movement of self-discovery in the multicultural structure of the Ottoman Empire and transformed into Turkism. The Balkan Wars (1912-1913) destroyed the foundation upon which Ottomanism was based, and led to the rise of Turkish nationalism, in other words, Turkism. The idea of nation in modern terms in the recent history of thought and nationalism subsequently developed based on this idea and emerged with the Turkism movement. Thus, Turkism became the movement of Turks in the empire, combined with political Turkism which was supported by the intellectuals who came to the Ottoman Empire from Russia. In this article, the formation of Turkist movements and the leading intellectuals of Turkish nationalism, who emerged at the end of the 19th century and at the beginning of 20th century in the Ottoman Empire, are investigated in order to examine the historical progress of nationalist approaches in a period in which a new national state was established and improved.

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