Identity Politics Inside Outtional Identity Contestation and Foreign Policy in Turkey

ISBN : 9780190655976

Lisel Hintz
224 Pages
156 x 235 mm
Pub date
Oct 2018
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The trajectory of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's time in office offers an ideal, empirical window into puzzling shifts in Turkey's domestic politics and foreign policy that do not correspond to usual shifts in geopolitical dynamics, international economic conditions, or the coming to power of a new party or leader.

In Identity Politics Inside Out, Lisel Hintz teases out the complex link between identity politics and foreign policy in Turkey. Rather than treating national identity as cause or consequence of a state's foreign policy, she repositions foreign policy as an arena, alternative to domestic politics, in which contestation among competing proposals for national identity takes place. Using intertextual analysis, she extracts competing elements in Turkey's identity from a wide array of pop culture and social media sources, interviews, surveys, and archives examined through 18 months of fieldwork to theorize when and how internal identity politics becomes externalized. Hintz traces the evolution of Turkish national identity from the wake of the Ottoman collapse and its effects; to the attempts of the Islamist Welfare Party (RP) to spread Ottoman Islamism in Turkey's public sphere; to shift the country's foreign policy away from the West and toward the Middle East.

With a unique framework developed through an in-depth study of Turkey, Identity Politics Inside Out analytically links the "inside out" spillover of national identity debates into foreign policy and fills a gap in existing scholarship by closing the identity-foreign policy circle.


Chapter 1: Introduction: Turning Identity Politics Inside Out
Chapter 2: Linking Identity Politics and Foreign Policy: An Inside-Out Theory of Identity Contestation
Chapter 3: National Identities in Turkey: Four Competing Proposals
Chapter 4: Forging a Nation from Within: Republican Nationalism's Fight for Hegemony at Home
Chapter 5: Stuck Inside: Obstacles to Ottoman Islamism at Home
Chapter 6: Ottoman Islamism Inside Out: Identity Contestation through EU-Based Foreign Policy
Chapter 7: Taking the Theory Outside:State and Non-State Actors' Use of Inside-Out Identity Contestation
Chapter 8: Conclusion

About the author: 

Lisel Hintz is an Assistant Professor of International Relations in the European and Eurasian Studies Program at Johns Hopkins University's School of Advanced International Studies. Her work is published in the European Journal of International Relations, Project on Middle East Political Science Series, The Washington Review of Turkish and Eurasian Affairs, and Turkish Policy Quarterly. She has given numerous talks to public and US government audiences, including on Turkey's increasingly authoritarian one-man rule, the Syrian refugee crisis, the rise of ISIS, and Kurdish and Alevi issues.

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