Archive for August, 2008|Monthly archive page

“Between the bear and the elephant

In Turkey and Armenians, Turkey in Europe, Turkish foreign policy on August 31, 2008 at 22:24

 I don’t know why but i cannot take the new cold war tension in Black Sea very seriously. My mind is somewherelse. But there is certainly some tension.


Between the bear and the elephant

Turkey is trying to tread a fine line of diplomacy between Russia and the West. As an American ally, Turkey has trained and partially equipped the Georgian armed forces under American guidance that aimed to encircle growing Russian power in the Caucasus.

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Exactly 100 days left.

In Erkan as a dissertation writer on August 30, 2008 at 15:16

@ in Different Forms of Suicide

Excerpts from the 13th Writing Report to Erkan dissertation committee members: 

Glad to be on time. This is a Saturday afternoon, I am in my office and there are exactly 100 days left before the defense day I and Jim arranged. I am contemplating about what to do in the remaining days. I still believe things are under control but I am continuously stressed for not writing/working enough. Here is what I think: I am going to submit a full draft by the end of September. A full first draft which will need too much work to do but it will still be a ‘complete’ form.

I still need to insert data all over the drafted 9 chapters. Most of the chapters are in mess with fragments of data and writings. Particularly, ‘internet urban legends’ chapter needs attention as all the material collected is in Turkish. So for the first three weeks of September, I will do my best to integrate my notes and blog archive. Then I will work on the draft form in the last week; more than inserting new staff.

Anyway, I had kept my usual pace of work during last week. I was never satisfied but I kept doing what I do during the week days. I did some cleaning up too. Especially on Chapters 005 and 006b. I will attach them both for the highlighted chapters of this week.

 Current Dissertation Draft
    includes 9 drafted chapter (plus bibliography), nearly 148,000 words in 254 pages.

New Orhan Pamuk novel released today and Erkan republishes his piece on Pamuk novels

In Erkan's habitus, Erkan's readings on August 29, 2008 at 12:46

Turkey’s Nobel laureate Pamuk to release new novel

World-famous Turkish novelist Orhan Pamuk, who was awarded with the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2006, focuses on love as well as details in daily life in his latest novel ‘Masumiyet Muzesi’, (the Museum of Innocence)."


Originally published on October 20, 2006

A brief -recent- history of Erkan thru Orhan Pamuk’s novels…

Here is my most personal take with Orhan Pamuk. I had always a particular taste for his literary talents- I know this will annoy some of my loyal readers though:(- and here is an experiment of writing inspired by Nick Hornby’s Fever Pitch

I don’t exactly know when the first time I read a Pamuk novel. It was probably in my first or second year in the college and I should have worked hard to go beyond the intellectualist consensus not to read him. That is, there was already a Pamuk buzz and “intellectuals” do not read the popular. His current publisher in Turkey, Iletisim, had transferred him from another, Can, and though I hadn’t read him yet, I already heard the transfer price, that was a first in the history of Turkish literature I guess, and this had a negative affect on some of his would be readers. But things change and I have a taste for the popular anyway. When I started to read Pamuk I had realized that he didn’t deserve to be popular (!), and hence Erkan’s infatuation with Pamuk novels begins.


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“Two Bits”

In Anthropology, Erkan's readings, Lines of thought on August 29, 2008 at 12:32

I remember once linking to Cris Kelty’s Two Bits: The Cultural Significance of Free Software( by Christopher M. Kelty) but now i began reading it and i would like to recommend it again. Prof. Kelty is in my dissertation committee but more than that he is the one who encouraged me to start this blog! So readers of the blog should pay their tributes to him:) One of the experimental aspects of Two Bits is that Cris put all the book online. It has its own site and anticipates future collaborations: The book can be downloaded here:

Two Bits


I have just started to read. So I am still in the very first chapters. But I thank God that I don’t need to lie. This is really an exciting book to read for me!

In a related issue, there is a good discussion in the last issue of Cultural Anthropology. The title sums up the subject matter of discussion. However, this needs subscription.

ANTHROPOLOGY OF/IN CIRCULATION: The Future of Open Access and Scholarly Societies

Speaking of Cultural Anthropology, check out the journal website

Two Bits in Interview Form

By ckelty

For those of you who’d like to know more about my book, but want it presented in a more convenient question and answer form, the media theorist and activist Geert Lovink just posted an email interview he did with me. It has some of the best questions I’ve been asked, and it means I’m in good company amongst the other interviewees. The original is on Geert’s site, Networked Cultures. I will also be making a few changes to my profile page, which the attentive reader might glean from this interview, also re-posted at

Map - The Kula Ring by runningafterantelope.
Bronislaw Malinowski

In "Great Diagrams in Anthropology, Linguistics, & Social Theory"

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“Montreux And Turkey

In TR-US relations, Turkey and Armenians, Turkey in Europe, Turkish foreign policy on August 28, 2008 at 14:34

Montreux And Turkey


STAR- We should be watching developments in the Caucasus more closely. Yesterday Russia officially recognized the independence of South Ossetia and Abkhazia, in response to requests from the two breakaway Georgian provinces, according to President Dmitry Medvedev. Considering the developments beginning with Georgia’s attack on South Ossetia earlier this month, this latest move might not seem surprising. But in terms of the bigger picture, one can say that through its recognition Russia took a risky step in a thorny area."

This might never happen:

EU waits for Turkey to break its political crises cycle

Now is the time for Turkey to eliminate obstacles and to continue on its path to European Union accession, said the EU enlargement commissioner in an article he wrote for Turkish daily Milliyet,

I am not sure what Mehmet Ali Birand means. Just listened the speeches of new generals. Not a single change in their discourse. Anti-globalist, anti-EU, anti postmodern. Yeah the new Army general accused of postmodern thought that are a threat to nation-state!!! :

New era at the TSK

Mehmet Ali Birand

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“The demographic time-bomb

In EU Foreign Policy, State of Europe on August 28, 2008 at 12:40

The demographic time-bomb

New projections for an ageing Europe

WHO’S up and who’s down in Europe? If it’s population one is counting, Britain will be on top in 50 years’ time, passing both Germany and France to become the biggest country in the European Union, according to projections in a new study.

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“Nosemonkey interviewed: On EU blogs and Russia

In Cyberculture, Turkish judiciary on August 28, 2008 at 10:19

Nosemonkey interviewed: On EU blogs and Russia

By nosemonkey

Believe it or not, from time to time people actually ask me for my opinion on things, rather than me just spouting out unsolicited words into the electronic ether and hoping that someone may spot them and correct my mistakes.

As such, this evening I’ll be doing the talking head thing on the BBC World Service’s World Have Your Say, trying to come up with a coherent theory about Russia’s current plans and how the rest of the world should respond. (Likely argument? Russia’s being childish and throwing a tantrum, and there’s usually two responses to tantrums: smack them or ignore them. Unfortunately, neither option’s really possible in this case.) Any suggestions much appreciated.

The Caucasus war viewed through Europe’s blogs

By Ole Skambraks

Blogospheres are vibrating in the aftermath of the war in the Caucasus. The need to understand and debate is huge, as spin doctors have been manipulating the news on both sides

NEXT NEWS IS WRONG. YOUTUBE STATED TODAY THAT THE BAN CONTINUES; Erkan now believes only a YouTube generation can save Turkey. So far, I haven’t heard a single person who defends the ban. Only after the system does not support any more those unique cases who goes to court for a ban and of course those backward-minded judges who support the unique cases…As you can see if these were particular, exceptional cases there would not be a ban. There is something more systemic.


YouTube returns after three-month ban

Access to YouTube, a popular video sharing Web site banned in early May by a controversial court decision for broadcasting videos deemed insulting to the nation’s founder, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, was reinstated on Saturday night."

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“Has Updike’s Hatred for the Web Hurt His Writing?

In Cyberculture, Erkan's readings, Lines of thought on August 27, 2008 at 19:39

I am very disappointed when a respected author, scholar etc expresses his/her dislike with the web.


Updike piece will be found below. In the mean time, someone notified me of a new research network site. For the interested parties:

here, membership free until sometime.

oh boy, I am tired. 

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JITEM Linked To Human and Arms Trafficking…

In Turkey and Kurds, Turkish judiciary, Turkish politics on August 27, 2008 at 12:07

Ergenekon divides Kurdish politicans, too.

Ergenekon Investigation: Military Unit Linked To Human and Arms Trafficking

By Jenny White on Jitem

Documents seized in a police raid on the house of an executive of a TV station as part of the ongoing Ergenekon operation have revealed that a secret and illicit military intelligence unit known as JITEM was engaged in several illegal acts, including drug and human smuggling and arms trade with the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK)….

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“Can the EU win the peace in Georgia?

In EU Foreign Policy, European Economy, European Parliament, State of Europe on August 26, 2008 at 23:48

Can the EU win the peace in Georgia?

The conflict between Georgia and Russia has seen the EU become the main diplomatic mediator between the two and it should use this status to develop peaceful relations in the region, argue Nicu Popescu et al. in an August 2008 commentary for the European Council on Foreign Relations.

USAK Report: Change in Caucasia brings burdens and opportunities for Turkey


Turkey is one of the countries that will be most vulnerable vis-à-vis a new global order triggered by the conflict between Georgia and Russia, a study by the Ankara-based International Strategic Research Organization (ISRO/ USAK) has noted.

The conflict erupted on Aug. 7-8 when Georgia tried to retake South Ossetia. A Russian counter-offensive pushed into Georgia proper, crossing its east-west highway and nearing a Western-backed oil pipeline. Russia ignored Western demands to remove its remaining troops from Georgia’s heartland, saying the residual troops are peacekeepers needed to avert further bloodshed and to protect the people of Georgia’s separatist, pro-Moscow provinces of South Ossetia and Abkhazia, two days after Moscow said it had wrapped up its withdrawal.


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