chapter  Chapter 11
21 Pages

Neoliberalism and the Rise of Authoritarianism in Turkey Under the AKP

WithYıldız Atasoy

This chapter locates contemporary authoritarianism in Turkey within a process of instituting a neoliberal developmentalism and making a neoliberal history under the AKP governments. It places Turkey’s current experience with authoritarian rule in the context of a neoliberal development model through a neostatist restructuring of capital accumulation and a deepening of the commodification process. AKP authoritarianism also activates economization as a new value system. The injection of economization as a new value system into historymaking in Turkey enables people to ‘sense-make’ the phenomenon of endless commodification. The chapter argues that the presence or absence of a crisis in neoliberal capitalism does not necessarily produce an authoritarian outcome, but it shows that authoritarianism as built into neoliberal historymaking is seen as a socially desirable and acceptable project. Tangled up with concerns such as the headscarf ban and arbitrarily implemented policy practices, such as the state reclamation of common public lands for housing, mega-infrastructural projects and commercial agriculture, neoliberal historymaking broadens an ideational and institutional context for the acceptability of the ever-increasing subordination of humans and nonhuman nature to the commodification process.