Ontological (in)security of 'included' citizens: the case of early Republican Turkey (1923-1946)
Taylor and Francis
117 - 133
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Conflict resolution and ontological security: peace anxieties
When considered from today’s vantage point, attempts to create cohesive nationstates through forced migration and/or assimilation of peoples come across as sources of insecurity for all those affected (Krishna 1999). However, in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, both forced migration and assimilation were adopted as conflict-regulation measures. The assumption was that ‘cohesive’ nation-states would be less conflict-prone than others (see Joenniemi Chapter 7). Authors of the Lausanne Treaty (1923) between Turkey and the European great powers adopted such an understanding of conflict regulation when they agreed on exchanging population between Greece and Turkey. In the following years Turkey’s Republican leaders engaged in various spatial, economic and cultural practices in the attempt to create a ‘cohesive’ body politic. In this chapter, we highlight multiple in/securities experienced by myriad peoples in Turkey – including those who were forced to migrate and others who were encouraged to assimilate in the early Republican period. Different from other accounts that have focused on insecurities of those who were forced to immigrate or those who were encouraged to assimilate (see Çelik Chapter 3), we also look at the experiences of ‘model citizens’ of the Republic, those who were fully integrated (and/or assimilated). We utilize the concept of ‘ontological (in)security’ in accounting for the experiences of this latter group who, we argue, were also in/secured as they became less able to live with ‘difference’.