The Journal Forum: 1954-1960 in Turkey

By Diren Cakmak.

Published by The Social Sciences Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

In the ten years (1950-1960) of Democrat Party rule in Turkey, intellectuals were obliged to create some alternative centers of power, particularly in view of government’s oppressive policies towards the universities and the press. Forum Journal constituted one such center of criticism. Forum’s writers –most of whom were educated in the republican regime- opposed the DP’s pragmatic approach to politics and wanted to center political life on reason and to eliminate conservative attitudes. Most of the writers were from the Faculty of Political Science in Ankara University. Forum started to be published in April 1954. Forum did not aim at a struggle to acquire political power. Forum had an influence on almost the whole of the Turkish intelligentsia in the years 1954-1960. The institutions and ideas suggested by Forum were realized to a large extent with the Constitution accepted after the military intervention in the year 1960. For example, the establishment of a second chamber of the legislative assmebly –the Senate-, the constitutional court, the state planning organization, autonomous universities, independence of judges, free press, granting rights to strike and collective negotiations to workers, free opposition, the principal of social equality..etc that had all been discussed in the pages of Forum, found place in the Constitution 1961. So it is possible to claim that Forum Journal with its great contribution for the reconsolidation of the democratic regime demonstrated the higly significant role in Turkish political life. Forum writers treated the military intervention in 27 May 1960 as the liberator of Turkish democracy although it caused a temporary break in the democratic regime. This study which is based on the evaluation of Forum Journal will be a serious contribution considering the journal’s support in military intervention of 1960 in Turkish political life.

Keywords: Turkish Political Life, Military Intervention on 27 May 1960 Constitution Dated 1961, Army's Role in Turkish Democracy

The International Journal of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences, Volume 2, Issue 3, pp.31-40. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 573.341KB).

Diren Cakmak

Research Assistant, Department of Political Science and International Relations, Cankaya University, Ankara, Turkey

I was not born in 1911 when Olive Schreiner’s book, Woman and Labour (I called this book as the Bible of the Women’s Movement like Vera Brittain) was published. I was not born also in 1929 when Virginia Wolf’s book, A Room of One’s Own (in which she describes how men socially and psychically dominate women) was published. I was born in 1977 -when Julia Kristeva’s book Desire in Language: A Semiotic Approach to Literature and Art was published- in Tarsus which is a small city in the southern region of Turkey. After I have graduated from primary school, in the year 1988 when Palestinian women protested with their bodies in occupied territories, I began to study in a private high school named TEV Tarsus College (with state bursary). I graduated from secondary school of the College which had four-year English curriculum with the first rank in 1992, and graduated from Turkish-Mathematics Section of high school of the College which had three-year program in English with the first rank in 1995. In the year 1995 when Customs Union Free Trade Agreement between Turkey and European Union was signed, I began to study in the Department of Political Science and International Relations (English) in the Faculty of Economics and Administrative Sciences in Marmara University in Istanbul. I had bachelor’s degree in 2000 when Turkey has faced economic crisis of the year 2000.During September 2000-March 2001, I have worked as an English teacher, then in March 2001 I began to work as an expert in Ministry of Culture and Tourism in Ankara. At the same time I began to study in master programme in Department of Public Administation and Political Science in Ankara University. I finished master programme with the thesis named “The Evaluation of Copyright Codes in Ottoman Turkey and Republic Turkey in the years 1850-2002 in the scope of the relations between society and government” and entered in doctorate program. I worked in General Directorate of Copyright and Cinema in Ministry of Culture and Tourism in the period of March 2001-February 2005. I resigned from Ministry. In February 2005, I won the written and oral examinations of post of research assistant in the Department of Political Science and International Relations (English) in the Faculty of Faculty of Economics and Administrative Sciences in Çankaya University. I am going to get PhD title from Department of Political Science in Ankara University (In Turkey we name Faculty of Political Sciences in Ankara University as Mekteb-i Mülkiye, Mekteb-i Mülkiye was established in 1859. Most of the government officials and politicians have graduated from this faculty since 19 th century of Ottoman State.) My thesis is going to be completed in June 2007.

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