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Kitap İncelemeleri

Ölümcül Kimlikler / Zeynep Büyüksaraç


The book analysis generally based on the importance of the identity and the identities differences, modernity, especially pointed on the religion’s effects of the modernity. We saw the subject of modernity in our lessons especially in the book the same subject modernity because of the West’s behaviors. The other cultures understood that if the country wanted to modernize, they must go to West’s ways. Others wanted to be ‘like’ the west. But never come close to real west. I think this is an orientalism because west alienates others. Orientalism is made another community that not in West’s community. There is at the same time West made logic of closure because of not wanting others to develop. They close themselves from the others. In Mahmut Mutman’s article which is “Shooting the Middle East Gramscian said: ‘Orientalism is hegemonic not simply because it’s a dominant idea to which people consent’ He said that there is no aspirational acceptance (Mutman; 1992; 3).

According to ‘others’ the modernity means not to improve their selves in any place .They just loose part of their own because they wanted or not wanted but they hardly accepted this new structure. This is a conformism; it means that there is conformism of status quo. In this case we can’t talk about the modernization, we just mention about the modernism with force. Modern world’s setting up is at the same time there is an emergence of the destructives event. West’s awareness of their power, they began to spread the new techniques and liberal thought at the same time they precede colonization, slaughter and plunder age and they started to consequence everywhere and on every hand. This is West’s modernization and according to me domination is a big magical and a great admiration with evocatively grudge. It means that there is a transformation but not being on your own. It’s a power of one hand .Its West’s power and West began to tyrannized other cultures. I think emergence of modernization shouldn’t perceive as a bad because people, culture, society are the things which are dynamic. We should change with world but not by force because there is a necessity west began to develop their selves in everywhere and other aware of themselves that their community is constant. In East there is logic of closure to because they don’t want to effect any change or they don’t want any improvement because they are afraid of losing their traditions and their identity according to them their societies’ values are very important if there will be a change. They thought that they lost their own values but it is not true because they can modernize and improve themselves without losing their values. In Benedict Anderson‘s article Tom Nairn explained that people aware that they should change or modernize in every part of the things but he said that modernization’s origin is a nationalism I think he is true because firstly nations are begin to modernize and then the other parts of the identities modernize. In this change the most important thing is people‘s consent. If there is no people‘s consent there will be top down modernization. Çağlar Keyder pointed this modernization to in his Article which is “Whither the Project of Modernity?” According to him if modernization is just at the top group of people like began at elite society there isn’t a healthy change .How do the other groups change? So firstly; for the individuals should provide their freedom and should be encouraging to the change another important thing is while changing not to lose ourselves. At this point there is another Notion appears which “identity” is. The book talked about two things: first Amin Maalouf mentioned that we aren’t born with our identity and our identity can’t be occurring just in one sense. Our identity is shaped with our culture, language, nationalism… All these things affect our identity. The problem is people wanted to express their selves just only one identity especially with their religion ı think that we can use all of our identity in our every part of life because we can’t express ourselves with just one specific specialty. We are complete with all kinds of our identity for example being Turkish is not pre-given we aren’t born with this. We were born with just belonging something to continue our life. Maybe it’s an imaginary belonging to nation.

Benedict Anderson who wrote in the Imagined Communities said: ‘Nation is imagined community because the smallest nation will never know most of their fellow members, meet them, or even hear of them, yet in the minds of each lives the image of their community’ (Anderson; 1993; 6). But at this time the book that I read and Benedict Anderson pointed that there is always social cement between different societies and different cultures. I think that there is just no force in conforming one identity there is a force in our nationalism too. Sometimes people must seem like to confirm one identity or one nation because of a pressure that they live in. While I was writing this, I affect from the Micheal Billig’s article of Banal Nationalism. He said: ‘Nationalism is typically seen as the force which creates nationalism or which threatens the stability of existing states’ (Billig, sf: 43, 1995). I understood that our not just identity been in force our nationalism is been in force too. In my opinion, we should think and choose our nations and identity freely. In this time we can talk about the democracy He said that if we want to talk about democracy, people can tell their thoughts, themselves comfortably and this is a kind of tell about identity without any pressure. In democracy the writer said that the blessed thing is the values and the think is to be respect. Is the people’ believes not important the people are which colored men women child… The important thing is people’s honor.

In the beginning of the 1930, there was a social crisis and racist propaganda. In these atmospheres; there made a general election and these elections bring the democracies ends. The law of the majority is not always equal to democracy, freedom and equality. The democrat’s role is not pointed to prefer majority, to preserve the slank people’s rights opposed to majority’s rights and to be respect of minority’s rights. The book gives example from like Nelson Mandela did that the aim is neither white government nor black government. None of the people between them to apply the separation but it isn’t important that whatever their origin is. The significant thing is to give the same political rights to all the citizens.

If people’s position in the society is continued to depend on one of the contegrations, separations are continue to be deeper. The only logical aim is to reach and provide the decrease of the inequality, injustice and racism. All the citizens should own their own rights. Surely all these things can happen easily and immediately that’s why we have to struggle. The point is to catch the unity to provide the unity we have to protect, all our identities. Another point is people make a mistake while they were recognizing themselves with only one identity. At the same time we have to protect our cultures too. We shouldn’t allow disappearing our other identities that we don’t emphasize.

The book emphasize that culture, language, memory, private identities are under the threat because ‘westernization’ emerged. This affects in all parts of identities. Why we say west because they have power of everywhere; in political, economic, cultural…Americahas a power of everything, they have all kinds of power so we are affected and began to Americanization.

Cultures are affected from others than there is emerges of global culture. There are oppositions or varieties of them. It means that there is a cultural homogeneity appeared. These are very important to develop global culture. Globalization means not only cultural imperialism. One of the other factors of the globalization is postmodernism. In Mike Featherstone’s article of global culture: An introduction said that ‘Postmodernism is both a symptom and powerful cultural image of the swing away from the conceptualism of the global culture less in terms of alleged homogenizing processes’ (Featherstone, 2, 1990). He said that there is a powerful global culture emerged and occurred syntheses cultures and between cultures of boundaries are reduced. In other words post modernization is an Americanization and this causes integration in America.

Globalization means, west based on whole cultural products. The world began the shrike because of the developments of the communication, transportation or other kinds of the parts with the discovery first telegraphy, television… When I said the boundaries between other cultures are reduced I wanted to say that with the discovery of these we are getting closer to the other cultures and at the same time we are similar to each other. According to Marx means of production with the result of these, there will be standardization, there is always a continuity of west’s domination in the world. There is still an inequality in everywhere. All cultures are affected from each other and they made a synthesis between their cultures to other cultures. For example; In Turkey people began to eat sushi. They prefer to eat other cultures meals in spite of eating their own cultures meals.

We are aware of other thing in Globalization; we are drifting apart from our own selves not only our cultures. This is just one of the breaking point. We are losing some of our own identities. I sometimes confer on the east’s rights because they are afraid of losing their own traditions and so now they are still dependable their own traditions.

In conclusion; I understood that our identities are very significant to all of us because if we don’t have any identities, we can continue to our life but in who are we? How are we live? With which society system? Society and people always need something to live in the system and to live regularly so we have to need our identity and we have to aware that we don’t have just one identity. We have lots of identities and we have to protect and respect in other identities too. The most important thing is without separating people’s identities; we should confirm and respect people’s all identities. Other important thing is the Modernization, while there is a change or development, the point is not to be done with force and don’t forgetting ourselves, our own. Depending on this book; democracy means not always what the majority want or not majorities consent. It means that majority’s thoughts are important too.

In my opinion, we shouldn’t think just our nations or our rights at the same time we should always think and give importance what others want and not to justice them according to their identity.

                                      Zeynep Büyüksaraç


August 2020
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