Turkish Studies

2018 Call for Papers

Youth and Education in Turkey

October 18-19, 2018

Proposal deadline June 29, 2018


painting by Nezir Akkul

Credit: Nezir Akkul

Youth and education are central to political contestation in today’s Turkey. While the AKP government is engaged in creating a new generation in its own image, youth, parents, and educators grapple with ongoing institutional transformations in the education system.

Among the issues generating omnipresent concern among stakeholders are the constant state of flux in schools, curricula, and examination systems; the rapid expansion of religious schools; the commodification of education at all levels of schooling; the disjuncture between curricula and labor market needs; the challenges to critical thinking and academic freedom; and the dismissal of thousands of teachers and university professors from their jobs.

The 2018 Keyman Conference calls for papers that examine the state of ongoing transformation in education in Turkey. While education as an ideological tool to cultivate a national identity and a compliant and productive citizenry has long formed the core of educational research, less available are studies that focus on the institutional and cultural aspects of education. 

In order to discuss recurrent patterns and ruptures, we will take a historical perspective in this conference. While we remain interested in what takes place in the classroom, we encourage participants to take education beyond its narrow definition of formal schooling. We encourage ethnographic and survey-based research that analyzes the changing institutions, social hierarchies, meaning, and practices in Turkey’s field of education.

Issues participants may explore include:

  • Definition(s) and experiences of education
  • Institutional changes in formal education (such as regulatory bodies, educator appointments, curricula, textbooks)
  • Social inequalities in access to education
  • Civil society initiatives
  • Use of digital technology
  • Education beyond schooling
  • School to work transitions
  • Youth’s civic participation
  • Mobility
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