CONTESTED MODERNITIES: DIVERSE VOICES OF THE PIONEERING JOURNALISTS IN THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE

Banu Dagtas

Abstract


The history of journalism in Turkey, had moved in parallel to the history of modernization/Westernization which displays a top-down character. The first journalists (and novelists) after the Tanzimat of 1839 were state bureaucrats of the Ottoman administration. These Young Ottomans, or Jenue Turks as they were known, were in the vanguard of promoting a range of western ideas and concepts including : journalism, public opinion, liberalism, constitutional monarchy, parliment, nation, nation-state, and modern family. Most members of a group had tried to combine Western liberalism and Islam. This paper reviews the avaliable analysis and commentary on the Young Ottomans in order to re-assess their role in the process of Turkish Modernization/Westernization. A close reading of the work and careers of these key figures reveals the contested nature of negotiations around the relations between modernity (and its secular impetus) and understanding of the Islam of that time. The tensions between these two World views-which is still an ongoing problematic issue.


Keywords


journalism, modernization, pioneer journalists of Turkey, Young Ottomans.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.17349/jmc117408

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