"Turkish Cultural Identity: A European Identity¨, by Nilay Baycar

Turkish Journal of Politics Vol. 4 No. 2 Winter 2013



The aim of this paper is to review the nature of Turkish cultural identity and, in that context, answer the question: Does Europe consider Turkey an opportunity or a threat? The author will put forward a definition of the term ‘Europeanness’, discuss the character of Turkish cultural identity, and argue the Europeanness of that identity. In doing this, the author will provide some background: to the historical influence of Europe on Turkey; to Turkey’s influence, and the influence on it, by virtue of its unique geographic link between East and West; as well as, to the border-lines of European civilisation. From this, the broad similarities between the Turkish culture and the European culture will be discussed. Finally, the importance of Istanbul will be addressed, both as the cultural and artistic heart of Turkey and as the European Capital of Culture in 2010.