FRAGILE HEGEMONY, FLEXIBLE AUTHORITARIANISM, AND GOVERNING FROM BELOW: POLITICIANS' REPORTS IN EARLY REPUBLICAN TURKEY


Metinsoy M.

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF MIDDLE EAST STUDIES, cilt.43, ss.699-719, 2011 (SSCI İndekslerine Giren Dergi) identifier identifier

  • Cilt numarası: 43 Konu: 4
  • Basım Tarihi: 2011
  • Doi Numarası: 10.1017/s0020743811000912
  • Dergi Adı: INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF MIDDLE EAST STUDIES
  • Sayfa Sayıları: ss.699-719

Özet

This article scrutinizes election district and inspection district reports written by the deputies of the Turkish single-party government and the role of these reports in state decision making. Underscoring social discontent and the fragile hegemony of the new regime-both of which motivated the republican elite to monitor state and party administrations and public opinion-the article argues that the practice of reporting was neither a project of social engineering nor a practice peculiar to the Turkish state but rather a requirement of a polity concerned with the opinion of its citizens. In the absence of direct political participation of the people in government, the reports mediated between the state and society. Contrary to conventional accounts of the single-party period, the article argues that the republican elite did not govern the country through top-down decrees but instead sought to ascertain public opinion and its own administrative defects so as to consolidate its fragile hegemony. Based on these findings, I propose that we redefine the early republican state as a flexible authoritarian regime that was not detached from the society.