Elcin Aktoprak, Ph.D.
The School of Human Rights Association, Ankara
from September 2022 to February 2023
Born in 1979 in Istanbul
Studied Political Sciences and International Relations at Ankara University
Why Hasn't Minerva's Owl Arrived Yet? Nationalism in the 21st CenturyThe owl of Minerva has still not flown over nationalisms. From the 18th century until today, nationalism has been the leading ideology in the world, constantly renewing itself in accordance with the changing dynamics and conditions in the world. As a scholar who studies nationalism from a constructivist perspective, I argue that the fundamental question about nationalism is still of great importance in our time: “Why does it still exist and how does it do so?”
Therefore, my research project is to write a book dealing with nationalism from a constructivist perspective, from the past to the present under the conditions of its “renewal,” focusing particularly on the first quarter of the 21st century. In my previous work, I have focused on state and minority nationalisms and I have discussed the rise of nationalisms at different stages of world history by relying on the center-periphery concept within the framework of the historical capitalism-nationalism relationship. In my current research, I would like to deepen this discussion and take the question “why is there still nationalism” into the 2020s and reexamine center-periphery concepts and the historical relationship between historical capitalism and nationalism by revisiting my earlier arguments. To deepen and consolidate my research, I will comparatively examine my main arguments through period differences and various examples of nationalism. I will also evaluate new debates and conceptualizations such as populism, the radical right, and digital nationalism in the context of my basic question, “Why still nationalism?”
Aktoprak, Elçin. Devletler ve Ulusları: Batı Avrupa Milliyetçilik ve Ulusal Azınlık Sorunları [States and nations: Nationalism and national minority issues in Western Europe]. Ankara: Tan Publications, 2010.
–. “Between Authoritarianism and Peace: The Kurdish Opening in Turkey (2013–2015).” In Democratic Representation in Plurinational States: The Kurds in Turkey, edited by Ephraim Nimni and Elçin Aktoprak, 137–158. Cham: Palgrave Macmillan, 2018.
Akbulut, Olgun, and Elçin Aktoprak, eds. Minority Self-Government in Europe and the Middle East: From Theory to Practice. Leiden: Brill, 2019.