A STUDY OF OZANTÜRK'S EPIC OF "TURNALAR" IN TERMS OF NATIONALISM THEORIES
Authors: Hakan ALBAYRAK
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Various theories have emerged as a result of evaluations and studies on nationalism. Among these theories, "primordial theory", "modernist theory" and "ethno-symbolist theory" came to the fore. Primordial theory argues that nations come from the same lineage and share a common religion, language, culture and history. In this theory, there are “naturalistic”, “biological” and “cultural” perspectives. According to modernist theory, nationalism is a social necessity of that period. In this theory, nationalism is evaluated together with the modernization process, which affects social, political and economic developments and changes. In the ethno-symbolist theory, nationalism, ethnic origin and cultural characteristics of nations are emphasized.
National symbols are frequently encountered in Turkish oral and written cultural products. Symbols reflecting Turkish nationalism are widely used, especially in Minstrel Literature, a product of Turkish Folk Literature. These symbols appeal to the subconscious of the Turks with their deep meanings. Each symbol has its own semantic national value.
The "Turnalar" epic of Ozantürk emphasizes the shared cultural heritage of the Turkish people. In the epic of Turnalar, which consists of three separate works connected to each other, the Turkish communities that make up the Turkish World are described. In the first of these texts, the Turks of Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, Uzbekistan, Turkey and of Turkmenistan are mentioned. In the second text, Turkish tribes living in a wide geography including countries such as Iraq, Iran, East Turkestan, Crimea, Tatarstan, Bashkortostan, Yakutia / Sakha, Chuvashia, Altai Republic, Tuva Republic, Khakas Republic are presented. In the third text, the Turks living in countries such as Greece / Western Thrace, Bulgaria, Romania, Moldova / Gagauzeli, Serbia, Montenegro, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Kosovo, Albania, Croatia, Macedonia, Hungary, and Turks who struggle for existence" along with the Turkish presence in Europe are spoken of.
The epic of "Turnalar" is a work of Bayram Durbilmez, who also wrote poems in minstrel manner under the pseudonym Ozantürk. Durbilmez is a scholar known for his works in the fields of minstrel literature, tekke-sufi literature and folklore of the Turkish World. This scholar is also known as a Turkist, nationalist intellectual who has served as a member of the board of directors, chairman of the board of directors and a delegate to the headquarters in various non-governmental organizations, foundations and associations that defend Turkish nationalism. The fact that he usually uses the pseudonym Ozantürk in his poems shows that Durbilmez has a nationalist attitude also in the world of art.
In this article numerous national symbols that occurs in Ozantürk / Bayram Durbilmez's epic "Turnalar" about the Turkish World and that are shared by Turkish states and communities that exist across many geographical areas will be analysed. The national symbols in question are evaluated within the framework of nationalist theories, some of which through the primordial theory which states there are natural nations, some of which through modernist theory that emerged with the effect of modernization, and some of which through the ethno-symbolist theory that adopts ethnic cultural values. There are also symbols that are evaluated within these three theories. While determining the nationalist attitude in the epic, the scientific foundations of nationalism will also be tried to be shown through the mentions of the poet's academic studies on the Turkish World.