The role of national identity in accession to the European Union: The case of Turkey

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Publication Date 2012
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This thesis is empirical PhD research about political theory from the past and its adaptation in today’s politics. The National identity is evaluated with Benedict Anderson’s “imagined Communities” approach to the Republic of Turkey as a case study in the whole thesis. The PhD thesis consists of two main sections and two main issues for Turkey’s accession to the European Union. In one section is Turkey’s permanent data which expresses the Turkish national identity, such as the geography, demography, language, ethnic composition and religion.

The permanent data describes the unchangeable data for Turkey and it is the religion that is the informally important criterion for Turkey’s accession to the European Union. In another section is Turkey’s alterable data which expresses the Turkish national identity, such as the governmental and administrative ideologies like the guardian identity of the military regime in Turkey. The alterable data describes the changeable data for Turkey which is the formally important political criterion for the accession to the European Union. Both sections are closely related to the movements of political parties in Turkey to understand which identifiable data explicitly affected Turkey’s bid for EU membership.

The history of the Turks and the Republic of Turkey, the Turkish administration and the relationship between Turkey and the European Union are the determining factors in deciding which data plays a role in Turkey’s accession to the European Union, either the permanent data or the alterable data, and what role the data plays. Primary research carried out in Brussels with very high level selected elite staff provides the argument in this thesis.

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