tjir_v1n1bag01 - A DISCUSSION ON ETHNIC IDENTITY Gkhan...

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Unformatted text preview: A DISCUSSION ON ETHNIC IDENTITY Gkhan BACIK* After the end of the cold war a new wave of expectations has come to the forefront. Accordingly, many substantial concepts and institutions are, and will be, changing. Of all discussed concepts and institutions, some of them, such as nation states, are now part of the ongoing discussions. However, considering the various sides of these ongoing discussions, one should note that the main discussion around the concept of identity identification theory constitutes a large portion of the above-mentioned disputation. Why? The difficulty of giving a clear answer to this question is obvious. However, we may refer to the nature of the same process. Accordingly, the process that we are talking about includes some contradictions. These contradictions intensify with the definition of the identity formation. Consequently, the same process and the developments may give way to some contradicting results. For example, with the positive effect of globalisation we are talking about the de-functioning of nation states. At the same time, however, the role of sub-identities, such as ethnic ones, is increasing paradoxically. From this stance, we have two independent tendencies: one that increases the commonalities of the world nations, and the other one that makes much more clearly the differences of the sub- identities. Alternatives: Turkish Journal of International Relations, Vol.1, No.1, (Spring 2002) 19 Within these margins of the global line of action, some concepts deserve a re- evaluation since they have become the determining facts of our political/international system. We have had these concepts for more than centuries, and we will continue to have them in the future. However, what makes them important is the changing role/meaning of these old, or known, concepts/values. In the words of Sir Ernest Barker: The self-consciousness of nations is a product of the nineteenth century. This is a matter of the first importance. Nations were already there; they had indeed been there for centuries. But it is not the things which are simply there that matter in human life. What really and finally matters is the thing that is apprehended as an idea, and, as an idea, is vested with emotion until it becomes a cause and a spring of action. In the world of action apprehended ideas are alone electrical; and a nation must be an ideal as well as a fact before it can become a dynamic force. 1 The same, said above for the self-consciousness, can be said for the role of ethnic identities. Ethnic identities have always been effective. People from the very beginning have identified themselves and their societies to other people by using their ethnic-oriented motives and values. However, as it was mentioned in Barkers words, the set of ethnic values, though they have always been an inseparable part of society, have become much more active in the recent decade . To re-emphasize the emerging role of ethnic identity studies as well one can easily read Esnams introductory...
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This note was uploaded on 02/01/2012 for the course POLS 494 taught by Professor Garymoncrief during the Fall '11 term at Boise State.

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tjir_v1n1bag01 - A DISCUSSION ON ETHNIC IDENTITY Gkhan...

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