The Language of the 1982 Turkish Constitution in the Context of the Conflict Between Modernity and Traditionality

Bingol Y.

AMME IDARESI DERGISI, vol.46, no.3, pp.33-58, 2013 (Peer-Reviewed Journal) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 46 Issue: 3
  • Publication Date: 2013
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index, Scopus, TR DİZİN (ULAKBİM)
  • Page Numbers: pp.33-58


This study aims to analyze the language of Turkish Constitution through the lens of modernist-traditionalist debate. It argues that the purification movement conducted by modernists from 1932 to 1983 and the opposition by traditionalists to this movement in favor of simplification of the language has caused a linguistic chaos in Turkey, that the modernist achievement attained by the purification movement may only be regarded as a "catastrophic success," and that the trace and reflection of this linguistic chaos can be seen in the language of 1982 Turkish Constitution. The study will firstly explore the political and historical background to the modernist-traditionalist debate and secondly demonstrate expressional disorders and conceptual inconsistencies caused by modernist-traditionalist debate. The study will end with some basic propositions for a simple, comprehensible, and consistent language in Turkish Constitution to be written.