Northwestern Events Calendar


MENA Monday: MENA Graduate Colloqium

When: Monday, June 8, 2015
12:00 PM - 1:30 PM CT

Where: University Hall, 201, 1897 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208 map it

Audience: Faculty/Staff - Student - Public - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Cost: Free

Contact: Katelyn Marie Rashid   (847) 467-5314

Group: Middle East and North African Studies

Category: Lectures & Meetings


Speaker: Arif Çamoğlu, English Department 

Respondent: Taymaz Pour Mohammad, English Department  

Title: Bandits and All: The Construction of Turkishness as an Absolute Political Identity in the Republic of Turkey

Description: Focusing on the nationalist discourse on banditry, this presentation will examine the politicization of life as the fundamental practice of Turkey’s juridical-political system that has been at work since the foundation of the republic. The state of exception and the production of bare life that ground the modern politics of Turkey become clearly observable when studied through Giorgio Agamben’s philosophy. To shed light on the significance of Giorgio Agamben’s reference to ‘bandit’ as an example of bare life and its relevance in the contemporary politics of Turkey, we will revisit the meaning of the word ‘bandit’ by taking a close look at its Turkish equivalent, ‘Eşkıya’. Exploring the variant meanings of Eşkıya -to accomplish a task as such- we will resort to the selected poetry of Shakespeare and Köroğlu -a sixteenth century Ottoman poet- along with some contemporary political events and stories taken from local Turkish, and international media. This lexical survey on bandit/eşkıya, and the discussion of the chosen works of Giorgio Agamben, consequently will help us address the problematic nature of the notions of democracy and ethnicity in the case of Turkey.

Lunch Served 

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