Seren Selvin KorkmazDoktorand
Seren is the co-founder and executive director of İstanbul Political Research Institute (IstanPol), an independent policy-oriented research institute with a particular focus on Turkey & Euro-Mediterranean zone. Also, she works as researcher at the Human Development Research Center at Boğaziçi University. She has contributed to the studies and administration of various NGOs and research centers and has also participated in various congresses, workshops and seminars as a speaker and an organizer. She co-founded Political and Social Research Institute of Europe (PS:EUROPE), an Austria- and Turkey-based research institute and served as Director of Turkey Office of the institute from 2015 to 2017.
Seren has contributed to various media platforms with her comments and opinion pieces about international and Turkish politics. Her frequent comments in Medyascope.tv can be accessed via https://medyascope.tv/etiket/seren-selvin-korkmaz/
Seren teaches “Minorities and Migration” course.
Her research interests include the political economy of exclusion, populism, identity politics, migration, state-society relations and Turkish politics. Her current researches focus on the origins of populism and responses from the left against populism their programs, and strategies. She has recently coordinated two research projects which are titled "From June 24 to March 31: Political Polarization in Turkey" and "The Precarity of Youth in Turkey: Perceptions of Work, Subsistence and Life". Her previous research covers the social exclusion of Kurdish internal migrants in Turkey by focusing on the interrelations between space, identity and class in everyday life.
I urval från Stockholms universitets publikationsdatabas
(Re)construction of Turkish National Identity in Urban Space
2019. Seren Selvin Korkmaz. Nation-Building and Turkish Modernization, 233-254Kapitel
This article explores the transformation of Turkey’s national and state identity under Justice and Development Party (JDP) rule in a spatial perspective by focusing on the counter hegemonic war on İstanbul’s panorama. (Re)construction of urban space have been used as means of transforming the ideologies into a concrete form and consolidating the symbolic power of the state in the everyday life. Urban space is not a static but dynamic “lieux de memoire” (the sites of memory) which reproduces the past, constructs the “new” and reflects state-society relations. The new Republic of 1923 used space-politics to create a Westernized, modern and secular nation-state by detaching the urban space from the traces of Ottoman past. (Re)naming and (re)construction by using specific symbols and modern architecture was operated by Kemalists not only to consolidate the new state identity but also to transform the society. However, counter hegemonic attacks towards Kemalist policies which lays behind the two main political cleavages, modernists vs. traditionalists and Islamists vs. seculars, has existed throughout the Republican history. Beginning from 1980s, rising with the identity politics in 1990s Islamic politics has consolidated its power under the rule of JDP since 2002. While the hegemony of Kemalist secularism has been strongly weakened; the visibility of Islamists in the society and public life has increased in JDP era and a new form of state identity is created with the support of mass media, architectural designs, Islamic arts as well as discursive practices. Istanbul, with its symbolic, geographic and economic significance, would be a compatible field to explain the transformation of Turkey’s national and state identity in the urban space. As a capital of Ottoman Empire and the biggest metropolitan city of Turkey, İstanbul has been the center of hegemonic wars on urban space; each political group who hold the power has tried to redesign İstanbul throughout the Republican history. JDP revitalized the İstanbul’s symbolic power by attributing it as a “de facto” capital of Turkey. İstanbul’s transformation in the last decade such as construction of Panorama 1453 Museum as a reviving the Conquest of Istanbul, the boom in the mosque construction and Çamlıca Mosque Project, using Ottoman symbols in the public buildings and landscaping; and renaming the Boğaziçi Bridge as “July 15 Martyrs Bridge” are some crucial samples of ideological using of space politics. All in all, this article argues that JDP redefined the national and state identity as well as citizenship and used urban space as a means of consolidating its ideology. The article explains how Islamism, neo-Ottomanism and latest increasing Turkish nationalism are combined in the state identity and serve as the main pillars of nation building process under JDP rule.