Author(s): Emre YILDIRIM

This article aims at analyzing two intellectuals, Yahya Kemal Beyatl? and Yakup Kadri Karaosmano?lu and their thoughts on nationalism and Turkish national identity in the context of ‘‘Neo-Hellenism’’ and ‘‘Mediterranean Identity’’, during the nation/identity-building process in the early decades of Republican Era. After the historical and social transition, French Revolution spreading the ideas of equality, liberty and fraternity giving rise to nationalist movements throughout Europe ended up with the decline of the multi-national empires and gave birth to the nation-states. Like the others, a new nation-state, Turkish Republic was established after the Ottoman Empire was collapsed. Turkish modernization initially took a form of westernization. Three ideologies; Pan-Ottomanism, Pan-Islamism and Pan-Turkism were seen as an appropriate direction for the society’s search for a new identity. The republican elite however, embarked upon more radical stand. It defined Turkish identiy as western modern secular nation which later became a dominant ideology for the new republic. Although there was this kind of definition, The contents of Turkish identity had not been clarified. Around the same time, Yahya Kemal Beyatl? and Yakup Kadri Karaosmano?lu came out with a new concept of Turkish national identitiy combining the perspective of ‘‘Neo-Hellenism’’ and ‘‘Mediterranean Identity’


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