09. Nov 2020 | 19.00 - 20.00 Uhr

09 NOV | Feminism(s) | Part III: Feminism in Turkey

Original photo by Hazel Aksoy

Feminism(s) | Part III: Feminism in Turkey


9th November, 7-8 pm

Feminist movements have been a political force since the late 19th century and have shaped the world as we know it today. Our contemporary feminist discourse is dominated by prominent Western figures, from second-wave feminists Gloria Steinem and bell hooks to fourth-wave activists fighting against gender norms and for intersectionality.

The black-and-white photo challenge that swapped through our social media accounts this summer has brought global attention to feminism and gender-based violence in Turkey. How can we explain the increasing number of femicides in Turkey? And why do, in these circumstances, conservative and nationalist Turkish politicians attack the Istanbul Covention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence?

Turkey’s history between “East” and “West” also manifests itself in the feminist discourse. Secular ideas that were introduced with the founding of the republic in 1923 have increasingly been challenged, particularly during the reign of the conservative-islamic Justice and Development Party (AKP) under president Erdoğan. The resulting tensions are most visible during the annual 8th March and 25th November marches, crucial events to point at shortcomings in gender equality and women*’s rights that are increasingly met with brutal police violence. Where does this leave the feminist movement in Turkey? Moreover, to what extent does the movement consider intersecting types of discrimination, as experienced, for instance, by Kurdish women? 

We will try to answer these questions in conversation with Dr. Hürcan Asli Aksoy, an expert on the women’s movement in Turkey based at the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP).

If you would like to join our online Tea Time via Zoom, please sign up below. We will send you the Zoom link shortly before the start of the event. We are looking forward to an engaging and interesting discussion and hope to see many of you there!

This event is organized by Polis180’s program Gender and International Politics. It is part of our event series Feminism(s) that takes a look at feminist movements, ideas and actors around the world. Previous tea times discussed Islamic feminism and feminism in China.

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