Erziehungs- und Bildungswissenschaften

Comparing women’s movements in different cities in Turkey

Project Management: Prof. Dr. Yasemin Karakaşoğlu

Research: Dr. Charlotte Binder, Aslı PolatdemirMünevver Azizoğlu-Bazan

Funding: Blickwechsel: Contemporary Turkey Studies (A Programme by Stiftung Mercator)

Duration: 2014 - 2017



The project “Comparing women’s movements in different cities in Turkey”, which was funded by the Mercator Foundation as part of the interdisciplinary framework programme entitled “Change of Perspective: Studies on Contemporary Turkey” (“Blickwechsel. Studien zur zeitgenössischen Türkei”), analysed the diversity of women’s movements, which embody a diverse range forms of action and organisational structures and which strive to achieve gender equality in Turkey. Furthermore, in qualitative interviews with activists and scientists, topics and areas of action dealt with by women’s movements – such as female employment, body politics and gender violence in transnational, urban and rural spaces – were discussed.


The focus of the research was placed on the identity and alliance politics of different women’s and gender political movements in various regions of Turkey.


The main focus of international feminist debate has shifted to questions of identity and related power positions since gender differences were acknowledged in the 1990s. Owing to the processes of globalisation, transnationalisation, neoliberal restructuring and debates on identity politics, international gender research has identified a “crisis in feminist movements”, especially in “Western” societies, since the 1990s. Even in contemporary Turkey, feminists and women’s groups, in particular Kurdish and religious-conservative activists, continue to focus on identity during critical interventions. There are therefore groups that define themselves as radical, lesbian, queer, trans, socialist, religious-conservative, Kemalist, dis/abled, Kurdish, Alevi and Armenian.


However, despite the deconstruction of the collective subject “we women”, which has also occurred in Turkey, the continued existence of structural discrimination and violence against women raises questions about how to constructively deal with diversity, whether solidarity can be developed and whether alliances can be formed.


Information about the project at Blickwechsel Website


Project description in Turkish / Türkçe proje tanımı



Online publication of research findings (German, English, Turkish, Kurdish)


Contact Person: Dennis Barasi


Room: GW2 1.240


phone: 0049 - 421 218-69129



The exhibition entitled "Courageous Women: Women's and Gender Studies in Turkey's Academia"can be obtained free of charge to display at other venues and downloaded here.


Yasemin Karakaşoğlu and Paul Mecheril in "Das Staatsangehörigkeitsgesetz ist unwürdig, sagen Yasemin Karakaşoğlu und Paul Mecheril" (taz-article from 6-27-2019)


Yasemin Karakaşoğlu comments on the ongoing discussion on English-lessons in primary schools in Northrhine-Westfalia in the online-newspaper Migazin