Sinan Yıldırmaz / The Mass Mobilization in the Elections of the Democrat Party Period

The Mass Mobilization in the Elections of the Democrat Party Period

This study aims to examine the changes on the methods of making politics throughout Turkish society during the formation and the development of the multi-part system in Turkey. Mainly by examining the relations of the political parties and groups with the masses during the transition period, the continuations and the breaks in using these relations are observed. Within this framework, elections, which are the moments when political parties directly and intensively are in relation with the masses, are chosen as the subject of research to examine the mentality differences between the two periods.

During the transition to the multi-party system in Turkey, it is possible to observe some continuations and breaks in the ways of making politics and in the power party's behavior towards the masses. In order to analyze the mentalities of both the one-party and multi-party systems and the periods on the masses, the populism understandings of the main actors in both systems and periods are analyzed. To show the continuations and the breaks between the populism understandings of the two periods exposes the differentiation in the forms of founding the legitimacy of the political parties. According to this, during the transition to the multi-party system, the political parties' forms of founding their legitimacy in relation to the necessity of gaining the active support of the masses had changed as to the previous period.

In the multi-party period, during the process of gaining the power and maintaining its continuation, to gain the active support of the masses became necessary for political parties. In a sense, to maintain the continuation of the power depended on rendering the support of the masses continual for the party in power. This situation enabled the formation and the establishment of some new methods and structures in between the relations of the parties with the masses. In the DP period, the attempts at establishing these new forms of legitimacy focused on new political formations such as the Motherland Front.

(Approved by Prof. Dr. Sevket Pamuk, Prof. Dr. Zafer Toprak, Asst. Prof. M. Asim Karaömerlioglu)