Diaspora-making as a state-led project : Turkey's expansive diaspora strategy and its implications for emigrant and kin populations
Title: Diaspora-making as a state-led project : Turkey's expansive diaspora strategy and its implications for emigrant and kin populations
Author: OKYAY, Aslı Selin
Citation: Florence : European University Institute, 2015
Series/Number: EUI PhD theses; Department of Political and Social Sciences
States' efforts to create, expand or mobilise extraterritorial populations of emigrant or kin origin have been largely dealt by separate strands of scholarship. This thesis aims to bridge these two strands and offer a broader understanding of home-states' role in diaspora-making by analysing why and how Turkey has evolved into a hybrid origin-reference state claiming and engaging an expansive diaspora composed of emigrants and a broad set of kin populations defined beyond co-ethnicity. The empirical analysis traces the state's transformation through focusing on its categorisation and identification practices and policy-discourse repertoire oriented towards these different types of transborder populations over the last two decades. It argues that the ways in which the state identified and targeted both emigrants and external kin groups changed as a function of the interaction between: i) economic liberalisation and outward economic expansion, ii) shifts in the state's foreign political and identitarian positioning vis-à-vis the West and its non-Western neighbourhood and iii) differing elite-sponsored conceptions of nationhood and narratives of nationalism. These interacting underlying factors have led the home-state to gradually expand the scope and diversify the composition of its transborder membership universe, while simultaneously engage in practices of selection and hierarchisation within its broad diaspora based on its changing definitions of ideal emigrants and external kin. This thesis also scrutinises the implications of changing rationalities and modalities of the state's diaspora making for the targeted populations. Empirical examination of the cases of the Turkey-origin emigrant population in Germany and the co-ethnic minority in Bulgaria demonstrates that the home-state, through its varying definition, (sub)categorisation, and engagement efforts, significantly impacts the diasporic membership claims and practices of both emigrants and co-ethnics. State-led diaspora-making has (re)structuring effects particularly on intra-minority dynamics as well as different sections' stances towards and relations with the home-state.
Defence date: 1 December 2015; Examining Board: Prof. Rainer Bauböck, European University Institute (Supervisor); Prof. Olivier Roy, European University Institute; Prof. Rogers Brubaker, University of California, Los Angeles; Dr. Alan Gamlen, Victoria University of Wellington.
Type of Access: openAccess