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Skidmore College
First-Year Experience

Scribner Seminar Program
Course Description

Across the Bridge: Turkish Politics in Historical Perspective

Instructor(s): Feryaz Ocakli, Political Science

Why do we define ourselves as Americans, Germans, or Turks? What does it mean to live in a "nation-state," and why are some regions of the world richer than others? Students will explore questions of ethnic, religious, and national identity, economic development, and democracy by focusing on the experience of Turkey. Turkey is a "torn country," where basic questions of religion, identity, development, and democracy lack clear answers. It is a country of deep social, economic, and cultural contrasts. Turkey is Middle Eastern, European, and Asian at the same time; it is poor yet a rising economic power; it is secular yet ruled by an Islamist government. This course will introduce students to the study of Ottoman history, political Islam, ethnic identity, economic development, and non-Western literature through the lens of Turkey and its people.


 Course Offered: