Chapuling in Turkey

June 23, 2013

Chapuling in Turkey

June 23, 2013

Occupy Gezi and Reflections from the Turkish Left

When: Sunday, June 23 — 3:30pm
Where: Beit Zatoun, 612 Markham St, Toronto

Since the end of May, Turkey has seen the rise of a social movement that has serious implications, both for freedom and democracy within the Turkish state as well as broader geopolitical ramifications. The movement and its protests have galvanized Turkish society and is notable for the inclusion of Kurdish activists. It has been met with horrible repression and staged violence by agents provocateurs. Even in the face of international condemnation, whether from powerful governments or international social movements, the Tayip Erdogan regime continues to repress the movement, which grows stronger by the day.

This forum, with three activists of Turkish origin, will explore the origins and potentialities of this exciting situation.


* Balca Arda is a PhD candidate in the Department of Political Science at York University in Toronto, Canada. Her PhD thesis focuses on the artistic performances of Muslim Diaspora on the post-September 11 period in North America. During her undergraduate studies at Bogazici University in Turkey, she co-founded “Davetsiz Misafir” (The Uninvited Guest), an intellectual magazine of science-fiction, cinema and critique, and she became the chief editor and art director of the magazine. She pursued her graduate studies at the University of the Arts London in the field of Digital Arts. From 2008-2010, Balca was a member of the artist residency of Borusan Art Center that selected 10 young Turkish artists to support their artistic works. She pursued another MA in the political science department at Bogazici University, and her thesis was on the Transformation of the Kurdish Oppositional Art in Turkey.

* Ezgi Dogru is a graduate of Middle East Technical University in Ankara, and is currently a PhD student in Political Science at York University studying urban political economy and regional accumulation strategies in Turkey. She has been organizing some of the support demonstrations in Toronto.

* Baris Karaagac went to school in Istanbul and is currently teaching Development Studies at Trent University. He is the editor of Accumulations, Crises, Struggles: Capital and Labour in Contemporary Capitalism.

* Chapuling (Turkish: çapuling) is a neologism originating in the May 2013 protests in Turkey, derived from Prime Minister Erdogan’s use of the term “çapulcu” (roughly translated to “looter” or “marauder” ) to describe demonstrators.

Sponsored by: Greater Toronto Workers’ Assembly; Socialist Project; Centre for Social Justice | Facebook event

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