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Agrarian Change, Industrialization and Geopolitics

Beyond the Turkish Sonderweg

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  04 December 2017

Eren Duzgun*
Affiliation:
University of Kyrenia, North Cyprus [duzgunerenler@gmail.com]
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Abstract

This article takes issue with the common view that the early Turkish Republic (1920-1940) followed a “special” route to modernity characterized by “state capitalism.” It argues that such a view, rooted in the Sonderweg paradigm, obscures the historical-comparative specificity of Turkish state formation, leading to problematic conclusions about the character of Turkish modernization. Based on insights derived from Karl Polanyi’s notion of “economistic fallacy” and Political Marxism’s conception of capitalism, I offer a new interpretation of the early Republican project in Turkey, which, in turn, provides a deeper understanding of the social content, tempo and multi-linearity of world historical development.

Résumé

Cet article discute de façon critique la vision commune selon laquelle la jeune République Turque (1920-1940) aurait suivi une voie « spéciale » vers la modernité caractérisée par le « Capitalisme d’État ». Il entend montrer que cette thèse, associée au paradigme dit « Sonderweg », obscurcit davantage qu’elle n’éclaire ce qui fait la spécificité historique et comparée de la formation de l’État en Turquie, conduisant à des conclusions fragiles à propos du processus de modernisation. En s’appuyant sur l’approche des relations sociales de propriété mais également la notion d’economistic fallacy développée par Karl Polanyi, l’article propose une nouvelle interprétation du projet républicain pour la Turquie, et entend contribuer à une meilleure compréhension du contenu, du tempo et de la multi-linéarité du développement historique mondial.

Zusammenfassung

Dieser Beitrag diskutiert kritisch die allgemein verbreitete Vorstellung, dass die junge türkische Republik (1920-1940) mit dem Staatskapitalismus einen besonderen Weg in die Modernität gewählt hätte. Er versucht des Weiteren zu zeigen, dass diese These, in Verbindung mit dem Paradigma des sogenannten « Sonderwegs », die historisch-komparative Besonderheit der türkischen Staatsbildung eigentlich mehr okkultiert, da sie zu voreiligen Rückschlüssen bezüglich des türkischen Modernisierungsprozesses führt. Aufbauend auf dem Ansatz der sozialen Besitzverhältnisse sowie des von Karl Polyani entwickelten Begriffes des « wirtschaftlichen Trugschlusses » schlägt der Aufsatz eine neue Interpretation des republikanischen Projekts der Türkei vor und möchte zu einem besseren Verständnis des Inhalts, der Geschwindigkeit und der Multilinearität der weltgeschichtlichen Entwicklung beitragen.

Type
Varia
Copyright
Copyright © A.E.S. 2017 

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