Anna Vakali / Agreements and Friendship between Greece and Turkey in 1930: Contesting Nationalist Discourses and Press Reactions

An abstract of the Thesis of Anna Vakali for the degree of Masters of Arts from the Atatürk Institute for Modern Turkish History to be taken June 2007

Agreements and Friendship between Greece and Turkey in 1930: Contesting Nationalist Discourses and Press Reactions

The signing, among others, of a “friendship agreement” between Greece and Turkey in 1930 has been coined by official nationalist discourses as the initiation of a brand new “friendship-era” between the two nations. This rupture though was undermined by the fact that the signing followed only few years after the end of the Greek-Turkish war in 1922, and the ethnic tensions that the ten-year-long fighting had brought as its unavoidable repercussion. This thesis, after a brief analysis of the international matrix in which the Greek-Turkish rapprochement was concluded, proceeds to a two-fold analysis: On the one hand it reconstructs the nationalist discourses -mirrored in parliament debates and public speeches, as well as the regime-loyal press, that is, the Venizelist ??e??e??? ??µa (Free Tribune), and the Turkish Cumhuriyet (Republic)- with which both the Venizelist and the Kemalist government justified in public the followed policy and attempted to render the other party as a “trustable” and “new” partner, disentangling it thereby from past connotations, while presenting themselves as fully supported by both countries’ “public opinion.” On the opposite pole, it seeks to shed light on the differences evolving between these official nationalist discourses and oppositional/popular ones. With that aim it analyzes the two countries’ press spectrum of 1930 and sheds light on the different nationalist imaginaries that were uttered around the signing of the agreements in June and October 1930, by popular versions of the official nationalist discourse, like the Turkish newspaper Vakit (Time), by oppositional parties, as the anti-Venizelists in Greece, or such marginalized groups like the refugees/exchangees and the communists. The method thereby used is a critical reading and a reconstruction of the texts of the parliament discussions and a variety of newspapers, with the aim to create a narrative unraveling the different political implications, the power relations and the contradictions these contain.

Atatürk Ilkeleri ve Inkilap Tarihi Enstitüsü’nde Yüksek Lisans derecesi için Anna Vakali tarafindan Haziran 2007’te teslim edilen tezin kisa özeti

1930 Yilinda Yunanistan ve Türkiye Arasinda Dostluk Dönemi ve Anlasmalari: Çekisen Milliyetçi Söylemler ve Basindaki Tepkiler

Imzalanan benzeri anlasmalar arasinda, 1930 yilinda Yunanistan ve Türkiye arasinda imzalanan “dostluk anlasmasi”, resmi milliyetçi söylemler tarafindan iki ülke arasinda yeni bir “dostluk dönemi”nin baslangici olarak nitelendirildi. Ancak bu “yeni dönem” 1922 yilinda sona eren Türk-Yunan savasindan hemen sonra anlasma ve yaklasik on yil süren bir savasin kendisiyle birlikte kaçinilmaz olarak getirdigi etnik gerilimler tarafindan gölgemekteydi. Bu tez, Türk-Yunan yakinlasmasinin sonuçlandigi uluslararsi iliskiler matrisini kisaca inceledikten sonra iki yönlü bir analizi hedefliyor: Bir taraftan -parlamentodaki tartismalarda, halka açik konusmalarda ve rejim taraftari basinda (hem Venizelist ??e??e??? ??µa (Serbest Kürsü’ de) hem Cumhuriyet’ te) yankilanan- Venizelist ve Kemalist hükümetlerin, her iki ülkenin “kamuoylari” tarafindan da desteklendikleri iddiasiyla, anlasmayi kamuoyunda mesrulastirmak için kullandigi, bir digerinin “güvenilir” ve “yeni” ortak olarak tasvir edilerek, geçmis kötü çagrisimlara mesafe konuldugu, milliyetçi söylemleri yeniden insa etmeyi deniyor. Diger taraftan bu çalisma, bu resmi söylemlerle muhalif/popüler söylemler arasinda ortaya çikan farklara isik tutmaya çalisiyor. Bu amaçla, her iki ülkede de 1930 yili basini taranarak, Haziran ve Ekim ayinda imzalanan anlasmalarla ilgili, resmi söylemin daha popüler versiyonlarini dillendiren basinin -Türkiye’deki Vakit gazetesi gibi-, Yunanistan’da anti-Venizelistlerin olusturdugu muhalif partilerin, ya da göçmen/mübadil gruplar ve komünistler gibi marjinallestirilmis gruplarin bu anlasma etrafinda gelistirdikleri milliyetçi tahayyüller ortaya çikarilmaya çalisiliyor. Bu amaçla kullanilan metod, farkli politik sonuçlari, güç iliskilerini ve söylemlerde içerilen çeliskileri açiga çikaran bir anlati ortaya koymak amaciyla, parlemento tartismalarini ve bir dizi gazete metnini yeniden insa eden bir elestirel okumadir.