Throughout the 1960s and 1970s, Turkey relentlessly persecuted any form of Kurdish dissent. This led to the radicalisation of an increasing number of Kurds, the rise of the Kurdish national movement and the PKK’s insurgency against Turkey. Political activism by the Kurds or around Kurdish-related political demands continues to be viewed with deep suspicions by Turkey’s political establishment and severely restricted. Despite this, the pro-Kurdish democratic movement has emerged, providing Kurds with a channel to represent themselves and articulate their demands.
This book is timely contribution to the debate on the Kurds’ political representation in Turkey, tracing the different forms it has taken since 1950. The book highlights how the transformations in Kurdish society have affected the types of actors involved in politics and the avenues, organisations and networks Kurds use to challenge the state. Based on survey data obtained from over 350 individuals, this is the first book to provide an in-depth analysis of Kurdish attitudes from across different segments of Kurdish society, including the elite, the business and professional classes, women and youth activists. It is an intimate portrait of how Kurds today are dealing with the challenges and difficulties of political representation.