Reece Waldron

The ‘Gezi Spirit’: Re-Imagining National Identity in Turkey

By conducting a critical discourse analysis, this dissertation aims to argue how the plurality and diversity of those within Gezi Park throughout June 2013 has encouraged a ‘re-imagining’ of national identity in Turkey. Through a poststructural understanding of nationalism, this analysis identifies the key aspects of the movement that have challenged previous notions of national consciousness. Labelled the’ Gezi Spirit’, the discourse disseminated throughout the ten articles is one that draws extensively from the heterogeneity of the movement. As such, what is argued is how those in the park, through a horizontal and decentralised network that is constituted by and constitutes demands for a greater direct democracy, have constructed a more cosmopolitan understanding of national identity. With strong evidence of engagement with the ‘Other’, a respect based on morality and less restrictive identities, what the literature demonstrates is those in the park acknowledging and uniting in diversity. Thus, what can be seen is not a redefinition of ‘Turkishness’, but in fact a realisation of ‘turkishness’: a re-imagining based on the acceptance and acknowledgement of national subjectivity.