CCI

Culture and Politics in Turkey and the Middle East

Examination of cultural identity and politics in Turkey and modern Middle East. Using Istanbul as a classroom, considers how representations of the Middle East are contested and gendered, analyzing such icons as “veiled women” and “terrorist men” and political implications of such representations. Topics include emergence of new social movements and paradoxes of secularism, Islamism, globalization, and neoliberalism in various settings. Offered only in the Duke in Turkey program. One course.

Between Europe and Asia: The Geopolitics of Istanbul From Occupation To Globalization

EI Istanbul as a site of historical, political and cultural interaction between Europe and Turkey. Approach framed by two important geopolitical events separated by nearly a century: first, the Allied occupation of Istanbul after WWI, which gave rise to the modern Middle East, and second, Turkey’s accession to the European Union, a contested transnational process that officially began in 2005. Examination of issues arising from Turkey’s separation from Europe as a Muslim country and its potential reintegration as a functioning democracy.

Sports, Economics and Politics in Russia and Eastern Europe

Sports as a manifestation of political ideology and international conflict in the communist countries. How sports has responded to the upheaval following the fall of communism, the break-up of Yugoslavia and the USSR, the influence of oligarchs and organized crime, establishing new national identities. This course will use sports as a window into the transformation of Eastern European societies. One course.

Trauma and Nostalgia: East European Film in the 21st Century

Examines the major thematic focus of East European filmmakers in the 21st century: their efforts to reconstruct and reassess the experience of the Cold War (1945-1989) and the Yugoslav wars (1991-1995). These films from the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Croatia, and Serbia include ironic/sentimental tales of Cold War childhood, thrillers about sleeping with the enemy (political informers), and psychological dramas centering on political trauma, resistance, and compromise. All films shown with English subtitles. No prerequisites. One course. 

Turkey: Muslim and Modern

Turkish history from the 18th century to the present. Turkey as strategic ally of the U.S.; candidate for membership in European Union; first Muslim country to adopt democracy, secularism, and Westernization, and as political, cultural, and economic model for other Muslim countries. Focus on

Turkish people's encounter with modernity as Muslims; questions about contradictions and promises of Muslim and modern experience; informed consideration of Islam's encounter with the West. No prerequisites. No knowledge of Turkish required. One course.

Turkey: Muslim and Modern

Turkish history from the 18th century to the present. Turkey as strategic ally of the US; candidate for membership in European Union; first Muslim country to adopt democracy, secularism, and Westernization, and as political, cultural, and economic model for other Muslim countries. Focus on

Turkish people’s encounter with modernity as Muslims; questions about contradictions and promises of Muslim and modern experience; informed consideration of Islam’s encounter with the West. No prerequisites. No knowledge of Turkish required. One course.

Around the Bloc: Cold War Culture in the USSR and Eastern Europe

Drawing on oral and written history, memoirs, film, fiction, and essays in anthropology and sociology, we’ll resist the black/white readings imposed by the Iron Curtain and explore the dreams, fears, ethical concerns, cultural trends, and lifestyles of Cold War baby boomers in the USSR, Poland, Czechoslovakia, and Romania. Highlighted topics include: the privileges and discontents of postwar youth, the atomic age and its mutations, adventures in socialist consumer culture, gender politics and real life, making art about the socialist state of the absurd.

Geopolitics and Globalization: From Bosnia to Afghanistan

Study of countries on the geographical periphery of the commonly defined Middle East: Bosnia, Turkey, Armenia, Chechnya, Iran, and Afghanistan. All of these countries have deep Middle Eastern ties and traditions, sizeable communities with Middle Eastern origins and connections, and recent histories of cultural and ethnic conflict and violence. Exploration of how the Middle Eastern components and histories in these conflicts have been distorted and obscured as the conflicts have been depicted through the lenses of U.S. or Soviet/Russian geopolitical interests. One course.

Geopolitics & Globalization: From Bosnia to Afghanistan

Study of countries on the geographical periphery of the commonly defined Middle East: Bosnia, Turkey, Armenia, Chechnya, Iran, and Afghanistan. All of these countries have deep Middle Eastern ties and traditions, sizeable communities with Middle Eastern origins and connections, and recent histories of cultural and ethnic conflict and violence. Exploration of how the Middle Eastern components and histories in these conflicts have been distorted and obscured as the conflicts have been depicted through the lenses of U.S. or Soviet/Russian geopolitical interests. One course.

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