Posts by Ayşe Zarakol

Ayşe Zarakol 03-03-2017
The International Studies Association (ISA) convention theme this year was “Understanding Change in World Politics.” The theme is set every year by the president and program chairs in an attempt to introduce an overarching coherence to the program. The president invites noted scholars to organize roundtables and panels linked to the conference theme. This year’s call for proposals observed that: “[m]uch of international relations theory is poorly equipped...
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Ayşe Zarakol 03-01-2017
I was part of six panels at the International Studies Association (ISA) convention. One of the more interesting ones was on Russia and NATO. It was organized by Kimberly Marten (Barnard College) and included, along with me and Kimberly, Deborah Yarsike Ball (Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory), Olga Oliker (CSIS), and Elizabeth Wishnick (Montclair State University). Each panelist was asked to reflect on where they thought Russia and NATO relations...
Ayşe Zarakol 02-28-2017
The International Studies Association (ISA) Convention is held annually in a different North American city every year, almost always in the United States. This year’s conference was held in Baltimore February 21-25. To my knowledge, ISA is the largest conference for those who study international relations, hosting more than 6,000 scholars and political scientists annually.[1] This year the Trump travel ban hung heavy in the air. After the ban was...
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Ayşe Zarakol 12-20-2016
(LRB Blog) At 7.05 p.m. Turkish time yesterday, the Russian ambassador, Andrei Karlov, was shot dead in an Ankara art gallery, while visiting an exhibition entitled Russia through Turkish Eyes. The assassin, Mevlüt Mert Altıntaş, an off-duty Turkish police officer in a suit and tie, calmly shot Karlov in the back several times; spoke in Turkish about Aleppo, with his hand in the air, one finger pointed upward (a jihadi sign, symbolising ‘takbir’, the...
Ayşe Zarakol 08-05-2016
(Changing Turkey) The deficiencies in Turkish IR literature mirror the deficiencies of the broader IR literature. IR is still an American dominated field. Until recently, American IR was characterised by what is called inter-paradigm debates between realism, liberalism and to some extent, constructivism. Later another major debate emerged between positivists and non-positivists, the end result of which has been an increasing divergence between American IR...
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Ayşe Zarakol 08-04-2016
(LRB blog) Since the failed coup attempt on 15 July, two distinct narratives about Turkey have emerged. Talking to Turks and non-Turks about the coup increasingly resembles travelling between parallel universes. Outside Turkey, most observers have focused on the way President Erdoğan and the AKP government have handled the aftermath of the coup, rather than the coup attempt itself. The indiscriminate violence of the coup, the killing of hundreds of...
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Ayşe Zarakol 07-12-2013
Since the start of the 2000s, it has become commonplace to speak of the so-called “Rise of the Rest.” This theme skyrocketed after the global financial crisis of 2008-9, which disproportionately affected the economies of Western industrialized states. Although not everyone agrees that “the Rest” is rising to the extent that they seriously challenge Western dominance in the international system, it cannot be denied that “rising powers” now occupy a...
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Ayşe Zarakol 10-15-2012
(Journal Article) Given its economic success and the political transformations of the last decade, it is not surprising that Turkey is now charting an ambitious course in foreign policy. This article provides a sober assessment of some of the shortcomings becoming evident in Turkish foreign policy, and argues that if these problems are not addressed, Turkey is due to fall short of its regional leadership ambitions. [...] Nationalities Papers: The...
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Ayşe Zarakol 03-23-2012
  At issue here is the recent decision to dismiss the cases against five defendants in the Sivas Massacre trial because of the statute of limitations, and the AKP government’s reactionto that decision. Sivas, Turkey, 1993 The Sivas Massacre is one of the most sordid episodes in recent Turkish history. Sivas is a town in Eastern Anatolia with a sizable Alevi population. In 1993, during the Pir Sultan AbdalFestivities organized by the Alevi community, a...
Ayşe Zarakol 03-02-2012
   The French highest court decision last Tuesday to overturn the “Armenian genocide bill” brought the most recent confrontation over Turkey’s refusal to accept the genocide label for the 1915 mass killing of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire to a rather anti-climactic end. Despite Sarkozy’s insistence that he will have a new law drafted, it is clear that this effort is dead in the water. Going forward to the French Presidential elections, Sarkozy can claim...

About the author

University Lecturer (Assistant Professor)
University of Cambridge