Özge Özgür / The Great Wars of the First Quarter of the Twentieth Century and the Representation of War in Selected Works in European and Turkish Literature

The Great Wars of the First Quarter of the Twentieth Century and the Representation of War in Selected Works in European and Turkish Literature

In the thesis, the place and importance of the era of 1912-1922 in Turkish Literature is explored, focusing on the perception of the phenomenon of war in the literary work of eleven Turkish authors of the war generation. The period of 1912-1922 is a period of disorder for it embraces continuos wars that brought economic and social discomfort. It is found that 1912-1922 period is represented as an era of defense as far as the Turkish-Muslim experience is concerned. Thus, making war is identified with defending the homeland. This sate of defense was strengthened with the evaluation of the political developments of the 192-1922 period. The defeat of the Ottomans and the loss of the territories in the Balkan Wars; the attempt of annexation of the homeland during the First World War; the annexation of homeland after the initial defeat of the Ottomans strengthened this state of defense. This defense of state effected the identification of the enemy and of the self. As a result, identification of self and other are drawn with subjective concepts such as good and bad. While the Muslim Turks are profiled as brave and wise, the enemy is shown as brutal, ruthless and cowardly. Also, in the war scenes that appear rarely in the works, the Muslim Turks are victimized. The "sacred" values, heroism, faith and such traditional values of the Muslim Turks are also strongly emphasized. It is seen that in contrast with the questioning of the traditional values in the post-war European literature, in the evaluation of the Turkish Muslim experience of the 1912-1922 period, the traditional values become stronger. Thus 1912-1922 period becomes an important period that reflects the traditional values of the Muslim Turks.

(Approved by Prof. Dr. Zafer Toprak, Assoc. Prof. Halil Berktay, Assit Prof. Duygu Köksal)