Turkey after the Earthquakes, on the Eve of Historic Elections
Mediterranean Studies Forum
Program on Turkey
Stanford Global Studies Division
615 Crothers Way, Stanford, CA 94305
On February 6, two devastating earthquakes struck a region spanning southern Turkey and northern Syria. One was the largest earthquake in Turkey since 1939. Tens of thousands of people were killed in an event that affected 16 percent of Turkey's population and a cross section of Turkey's highly diverse society. Meanwhile, Turkey is scheduled to hold general elections in May, when voters will decide whether or not to reelect President Tayyip Erdoğan, who has led the country since 2003 under the banner of the Justice and Development Party. The earthquakes and the elections bring to the fore a number of issues that have been shaping regional politics over the past decade (at least), including the Syrian refugee crisis, demands for Kurdish autonomy, Alevism in Turkish society, the rise (and fall?) of neoliberal development models, and political Islam as a form of democratic governance. Now, in this moment after the earthquakes but before the elections, faculty from Stanford's Program on Turkey—representing the disciplines of History, Literature, Anthropology, and Sociology—will hold a "teach-in on Turkey" for all members of the Stanford community. All Stanford students, staff, and faculty are warmly invited to join this lunchtime discussion.