"The Hundred Years of Apartheid" by Dr. Taner Akçam
Since its inception, Turkey's legal system and the culture surrounding its institutions have divided citizens into three main categories. At the top of the hierarchy are Sunni Muslim Turkish citizens. During the discussion of the 1924 Constitution's Article 88 on citizenship, Celal Nuri Bey, the Member of Parliament for Gallipoli, made this very clear, stating, "Our own citizen is a Muslim, Hanafiyül mezhep, Turkish-speaking person." The second, or middle stratum, consists of Alevis and other non-Turkish Muslims (Kurds, Circassians, etc.). The third, or lowest stratum, consists of Christians and Jews. It would not be wrong to describe these categories as a Turkish "caste system."
Although we can go back further in time, to the Ottoman Millet system, Apartheid was established by a series of overt or covert laws and decrees issued by the new Parliament from April 1920 onwards, marking the beginning of modern Turkey. Many of these laws and decrees are still in force today. Where they are not in force, there has never been the slightest reckoning with their wrongdoing, and the spirit of these laws has continued to exert its institutional influence through secret internal correspondence.
This book is currently available to purchase in Turkey. Details to follow on when it will be available in the U.S.
International Book Talks
August 26, 2023 at 2:00pm in Bern, Switzerland
Please click here to view book tour interviews featuring Dr. Akcam and various news outlets.