Turkish foreign policy after the elections

This commentary by Nuh YILMAZ and Kılıç Buğra KANAT was originally published in Foreign Policy on June 21, 2011. Although it is still early to evaluate the ultimate impact which Turkey's June 12 parliamentary elections -- which resulted in a landslide victory for the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) -- will have on the... Continue Reading →

Turkey a beacon amid Arab world’s uncertainty

Nuh YILMAZ quoted by  Washington Times in this news story on June 11, 2011 ISTANBUL | Headscarves and miniskirts. Mosques and nightclubs. High rises and hovels. Turkey’s booming metropolis, Istanbul, is the contradictory heart of the country and has come to be held up as a model for other Islamic countries weathering the “Arab Spring.” With... Continue Reading →

Renksiz Kokusuz Halk Devrimi: Bir Tunus Hikâyesi

Cumhuriyet Türkiyesi’ni hedefleyip, 28 Şubat’ın hayal ettiği otoriter bir ülke yaratmayı başaran Zeynel Abidin bizim ulusalcıların en büyük kahramanı olmalıydı. Arap olması Türk Baasçıların ulusal duygularını rencide etmesinden mi, düşene dost olmak ulusalcılığa yakışmadığından mı bilinmez, tersi oluverdi.

“Islamic Iconoclasm” as a Eurocentric Narrative

When the discussions of iconoclasm shifted from theological context to modern art context, iconoclasm turned into a secular concept and even gained the meaning of ‘radical’ and even sometimes avant-garde in the European context. However, during the formation years of art history as a discipline, pictorial practices of Muslims, i.e. miniatures, patterns and other ‘minor’ artifacts as well as the lack of anthropomorphic figures were likened to ‘older’ or ‘past’ religious iconoclastic experiences of Europe thanks to the idea of progress. This act of distancing to describe the pictorial practices of “Europe’s principal Other,” coincided with the heydays of Orientalism. Therefore, it led the scholars of Islamic art to use the term iconoclasm implying a perceived backwardness rather than other possible alternatives such as “radical” or “avant-garde.” I argue that the main reason behind the iconoclasm thesis arises from this historical affinity between the Enlightenment’s conception of secular art and the Orientalist assumptions about the nature of “Muslim art.”

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