EU476      Half Unit
Turkey and Europe

This information is for the 2019/20 session.

Teacher responsible

Prof Esra Ozyurek Baer CBG 7.11


This course is available on the MSc in Culture and Conflict in a Global Europe, MSc in Culture and Conflict in a Global Europe (LSE & Sciences Po), MSc in European and International Public Policy, MSc in European and International Public Policy (LSE and Bocconi), MSc in European and International Public Policy (LSE and Sciences Po), MSc in History of International Relations, MSc in Political Economy of Europe, MSc in Political Economy of Europe (LSE and Sciences Po) and MSc in Theory and History of International Relations. This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.



Course content

Turkey-Europe relations have been identified variously as laden with numerous conflicts including those over democracy, citizens’ rights and identity, as requiring strategic if not necessarily amicable cooperation, and as bound by geography and/or history. This course aims to critically revisit such identifications in light of a nuanced appraisal of the ways in which Turkey and Europe have, throughout modern history, been conceived through and against each other as not only mutually distinct but also readily identifiable and explicable geopolitical entities. Based on an in-depth and critical engagement with weekly readings, the course explores questions around civilisation and civilianisation, democracy and democratisation, citizenship and citizens' rights, secularism and secularity, nation and nationalism, identity and belonging, and Occidentalism and Orientalism. Following an introduction to the course and its key themes, weekly topics proceed chronologically through successive periods in Turkey’s history of capitalist modernity: early capitalist modernisation (1839-1908), transformation into nation-state (1908-46), transition into multi-party system (1946-59), Cold War (1959-80), neo-liberalisation (1980-93), post-Cold War (1993-2002), “EUropeanisation” (2002-10), and “De-EUropeanisation” (2010-18). This periodisation therefore observes certain milestones in Turkey-Europe relations, such as Turkey’s application for association with the European Economic Community (EEC) in 1959 and the start of customs union negotiations between Turkey and the European Union (EU) in 1993. Students are required to come to class having read the weekly texts and prepared to discuss them at length. Alongside writing a final essay based on individual research, they will make one 15-minute oral presentation the final week of term, working from the texts read and the discussions had in class to offer nuanced insight into a current affair bearing upon Turkey-Europe relations.


10 hours of lectures and 15 hours of classes in the MT.

Students on this course will have a reading week in Week 6, in line with departmental policy.

Formative coursework

  • Slides and draft notes for 15-minute presentation in MT
  • Abstract and outline for essay (no longer than 500 words) in MT

Indicative reading

In addition to weekly readings, the following Turkey-related sources are likely to enhance the benefits derived from the course: Eric Jan Zürcher’s Turkey: A Modern History (2004), Esra Özyürek’s Nostalgia for the Modern (2006), Cihan Tugal’s Passive Revolution (2009), Jenny White’s Muslim Nationalism and the New Turks (2012), Yael Navaro-Yashin’s Faces of the State: Secularism and Public Life in Turkey (2002), Amy Mills’ Streets of Memory: Landscape, Tolerance, and National Identity in Istanbul (2010), and Ruth Mandel’s Cosmopolitan Anxieties: Turkish Challenges to Citizenship and Belonging in Contemporary Germany (2008). Leading academic journals that publish latest research on topics relevant to this course include but are not limited to Turkish Studies, The European Journal of Turkish Studies, New Perspectives on Turkey, Turkish Historical Review, The Journal of the Ottoman and Turkish Studies Association, Kurdish Studies, Études arméniennes contemporaines, Anthropology of the Contemporary Middle East and Central Eurasia, International Journal of Middle East Studies, The Middle East Journal, The Journal of Islamic Studies, and The International Journal of Islamic Architecture.


Presentation (20%) in the MT.
Essay (80%, 3000 words) in the LT.

Duration of student presentation is 15 minutes.

Key facts

Department: European Institute

Total students 2018/19: 17

Average class size 2018/19: 17

Controlled access 2018/19: No

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Self-management
  • Problem solving
  • Communication