Chapter 76: Renaissance in Turkey: Zia Gokalp and His School
In this chapter we shall discuss the role of philosophy in the rebirth of Turkey. It would be useful to clarify first the sense in which the term “philosophy” has been used here as a yardstick for identifying movements of thought. “Philosophy” denotes the intellectual efforts to understand and explain, in terms of rational and secular thinking, the problems relating to man, society, and the universe that have been presented to people when they felt unsatisfied by the interpretations given by religions or by the sciences.
The foremost prerequisite for the rise of philosophical thinking is the liberation of the mind from traditional modes of thinking. Secondly, it rests on a certain level of scientific advancement and begins when ultimate questions relating to man, society, and universe compel men to go beyond the realm of science. Philosophy arises when the traditional mode of thinking based on fixed values breaks down and when scientific knowledge opens new horizons, both of which compel men to rational speculation. The establishment of a tradition of philosophical thinking is the third important factor in the history of philosophy in a country.
When we survey the development and present-day status of philosophy in Turkey, we find the first prerequisite amply whereas the other two exist only partially and imperfectly. During the last two centuries, modern Turkey has been in a process of gradual (at times violent) cultural transformation.
This transformation had two features that were decisive in determining the rise of philosophy and the direction it took. One was its secularizing feature and the other was its westernizing direction. With the breakdown of the traditional Islamic thinking, there appeared attempts to interpret phenomena in a very different way from that indicated by tradition. In these, however, Western European thinking served as a model.
As this transformation is still going on and the two features mentioned above have not yet obtained an all-encompassing hold over the society and the individual, the state and the tradition of philosophical thinking in Turkey cannot be expected to be comparable to what they are in the West. Nonetheless, as several other Muslim nations are facing or are going to face the same conditions that gave rise to modern philosophical thinking in Turkey, it can be instructive to study that thinking.
The beginnings of the intellectual transformation in Turkey go so far back as the early part of the twelfth/eighteenth century. Philosophy had ceased to be taught in the madrasahs that were the highest schools of learning in Turkey even in the eleventh/seventeenth century. Hajji Khalifah (known in Turkish as Katib Chelebi), the unique liberal mind of that century, describes the deplorable condition of the philosophical and scientific teaching in the madrasahs. There was not only neglect of the sciences, but even hostility towards them for their being conducive to philosophizing.
Thus, the three bases of philosophy, the spirit of free inquiry, scientific investigation, and philosophical tradition, were destroyed by a growing religious traditionalism. This is an excellent example of the disappearance of philosophy whenever the value of free inquiry is denied and the progress of science halted.
From the early part of the twelfth/eighteenth century on, intellectual awakening in Turkey showed its first stirrings. The printing press was introduced, a new interest in modern sciences arose, and the minds began to think about some political and social questions in a new way. Except for the emergence of some rudimentary philosophical inquiry, a century and a half had to pass before the Turkish thinkers could become acquainted with the European thought.
It is true that intellectual contacts with the modern European sciences had begun earlier than that. These contacts were especially in the fields of mathematics, physical sciences, and medicine. But the level reached by them was not yet conducive to philosophy. The intellectuals were still in the stage of acquiring the fundamentals of these sciences, and interest in them was purely a practical one and had not yet reached a theoretical level.
As a result of an intense desire to acquire European science and technology there arose a firm belief that reason and its product, science, were the prime factors of progress and therefore, capable of performing wonders in the progress of humanity. This belief contained in itself three germinal ideas (the power of science, progress, and the evolution of humanity) that were bound to lead to philosophical thinking sooner or later.
In fact, we find the first manifestations of an interest in philosophical thinking in literary publications in the middle of the thirteenth/nineteenth century. These were occasioned by the acquaintance of the Turkish intellectuals with the European philosophy of Enlightenment. Thinkers like Fenelon, Bayle, Newton, d’Alembert, Voltaire, Diderot, Rousseau, Montesquieu, and Volney became known, and full or partial translations of their works began to be made.
The philosophical manifestation of the new mode of thinking and contacts with the European philosophy were seen in the rise of interest in two philosophical tendencies. One was scientism and materialism, the other the philosophy of natural rights and social contract. We find the first expressed by a former member of the ‘ulama’ corps, Tahsin Hoca, and the second by Namik Kemal, one of the leaders of the constitutional movement in Turkey.
Neither, however, can be called genuine philosophy. The first was a kind of creed, an expression of revolt against old ideas. Its exponents, far from being the founders of a philosophical tradition, were viewed as eccentrics or atheists. The second served as an ideological instrument in proving the necessity of a constitutional government in Islam. However, even that meant great progress and an unmistakable sign of the liberation of mind from tradition.
A severe reaction against both came with the establishment of what was known as Abd al-Hamid’s regime. Both materialism and the theory of natural rights and social contract were declared incompatible with Islam and dangerous to morality, and were severely suppressed. Jamal al-Din al-Afghani's Refutation of the Materialists did a great service in the suppression of these ideas under the Hamidian regime.
Presented personally by the author to Abd al-Hamid, this work served as a model for several books written to refute the naturalists, materialists, constitutionalists - in short, all the manifestations of philosophical revolt against traditional obscurantism. Neither Afghani nor his Turkish imitators, however, left any philosophical tradition of their own to take the place of those rejected.
Furthermore, the suppression of Western materialism failed to stop the infiltration of European philosophical thinking, this time in a subversive manner. Not only did the range of the then known and read European philosophers widen to include such thinkers as Schopenhauer, Nietzsche, and Spencer, but materialistic philosophy with its Buchners and Haeckels also pressed harder across the border.
The naturalism of Zola and others became known through literature. The best exponent of naturalism was Besir Fuad, a gifted young man who found himself compelled to commit suicide that he did in a manner conducive to scientific knowledge. Although his writings were few, they exerted a great influence upon the younger generations, upon those who were going to emerge into full light with the fall of the Hamidian regime.
When the Constitutional Revolution of 1326/1908 came, the Turkish intellectuals appeared with a vision of European philosophy incomparably keener and broader than that of the pre-Hamidian Turkish intellectuals. From the philosophies they discussed and also from the movements with which they began to align themselves we can guess what they had been reading and learning under Abd al- Hamid’s very nose.
An intense interest in philosophy appeared with the coming of the Constitutional era. This time, those who were engaged in philosophical thinking were not looked upon as eccentrics or dahriyyun. The first philosophical review, Yeni Felsefe Mecmuasi, began to appear at this time.
This review is itself the best example of the craving, now established, for a new philosophical orientation. Its pages were not reserved for the exposition of any particular philosophy. It was an excursion into all the various European philosophical ventures in search of ideas that might satisfy the needs of the Turkish thinkers. This review discussed and gave a panorama of the philosophies represented by Kant, Hegel, Comte, Spencer, Schopenhauer, Nietzsche, Mill, Marx, and a number of other Western thinkers.
This philosophical review died without establishing its own philosophical tradition. Its death, however, was not caused by any dearth of interest in philosophy as such. On the contrary, it was caused by its too much ramification. The review disappeared by giving rise to a number of different schools of philosophy. The subsequent years constituted a very active period for philosophy; but, if one considers the very calamitous political events, economic distress, and social upheaval through which Turkey had to pass during these years, one can understand why this active and variegated philosophical period did not flower into valuable and lasting works.
The principal field of interest was social and political philosophy. We find the emergence and differentiation of positivism, Spencerian evolutionism, materialism, and idealism. All except the last appealed greatly to individual intellectuals; still they remained matters of intellectual embellishment and snobbery, in spite of the popularity of their exponents such as Riza Tevfik who became known even among the common people as the “Philosopher.”
Only idealism took root and played an important role in the intellectual life of Turkey through the hands of its exponent Zia Gokalp. This thinker, who cannot be called a philosopher in the narrow and technical sense of the term, can be called the real founder of a tradition of philosophical thinking in Turkey.
Gokalp’s idealism was a reaction against Spencerianism and utilitarianism as well as against materialism. It was not, however, the product of a theory of knowledge investigating the basis and nature of mind before it does so with regard to the nature of physical reality. It was rather an ideological premise to work out a moral philosophy upon which Turkish nationalism could be built.
Hence, Gokalp gave to his philosophy the appellation of “social idealism.” It was a spiritualistic as contrasted with the materialistic interpretation of history. It reduced reality, the physical as well as the social, to ideas; it rejected the individualistic philosophies of society and placed society, as a primordial and transcendental whole, above the individual. It suffered, however, from an internal strain due to its emphasis on the positivistic view of causation and the role of science in human conduct.
In spite of its serious defects as a system of philosophy, Gokalp’s idealism exercised tremendous influence over Turkish thinking. Part of this influence has been to the advantage of philosophy itself because Gokalp for the first time gave the courage as well as the taste for philosophical thinking independent of tradition and Western philosophies.
His was a daring experiment, to work out a philosophical view, not by the mere repetition of the Muslim or Western philosophies or by a juxtaposition of both in a syncretistic manner, but by blending them together through a creative synthesis. In spite of the fact that his philosophy aimed at teaching certain definite beliefs and value judgments derived from his own philosophical speculation, it did great service to philosophical thinking by stimulating the rise of rival philosophies.
Gokalp’s intellectual integrity and personality played a decisive role in his contribution to thought. His great respect for philosophy, his emphasis on independent thinking, and his freedom from philosophical fanaticism prevented the utilization of his philosophy as an instrument for the suppression and persecution of the rival philosophies. In reality, all the subsequent philosophical trends took their initial clues from Gokalp’s thinking or were direct continuations of some aspects of his analysis. Another contribution of Gokalp’s personality to the Turkish mind was the road he prepared for closer contacts with Western philosophy.
As Zia Gokalp has done more to promote philosophy than expound his own philosophical views, it will be of interest to those concerned with the growth of philosophical thinking in the contemporary Muslim countries to dwell a little more on this aspect of his influence.
Prior to Gokalp’s time, philosophy was not taught in its modern form in the institutions of learning. Philosophy was only a private pursuit, an amateurish preoccupation. Its importance in the cultural formation of a nation as well as in the intellectual growth of the enlightened minds was not recognized.
On the contrary, philosophy was looked upon either with suspicion or with derision. Neither the conservatives who abhorred intellectual deviation from established dogmas nor the progressives who believed in the utility of action had a favourable view of philosophy. It was either a heresy or an idle phantasy.
Zia Gokalp has been the chief instrument in discrediting both of these views about philosophy and in giving it an academic and educational prestige. Through his influence, courses of lectures on philosophy, logic, ethics, psychology, and sociology were introduced in the syllabi for undergraduates.
While teachers for these courses were sent to study in European universities, a department of philosophy was opened with an entirely modern programme in the University of Istanbul. This programme was based primarily upon the tradition for teaching philosophy of the French universities.
A course on the history of philosophy from the early Greek period down to the contemporary Western philosophy was introduced in this department for the first time. A separate course was introduced on the history of philosophy in Muslim countries with a view to teaching the subject with a scientific approach. The latter course was introduced also in the Faculty of Theology. In addition to specialized courses dealing with Greek, medieval, Islamic, and modern Western philosophies, courses were given in systematic philosophy, metaphysics, logic, ethics, and aesthetics as branches of philosophical inquiry.
Gokalp himself taught none of these, he was a Professor of Sociology, but he was the patron behind all, even though the men who taught these were his philosophical adversaries. A further step was taken in the modernization of philosophical teaching during World War I with the appointment of German professors. Although these German professors of philosophy contributed nothing to the content of philosophical thinking in Turkey, they were useful in introducing the scientific treatment of the history of philosophy for which the Germans are reputed.
Gokalp’s social idealism was a synthesis of Islamic and Western philosophical traditions with the aim of deriving a theoretical basis for Turkish nationalism. For him, therefore, teaching Muslim or Western philosophies was not enough. His greatest contribution, perhaps, lay in his emphasis on bringing home knowledge of these philosophies so as to make them the data by which Turkish thinking would free itself from the bondage of the old and of the foreign.
In other words, he wanted to promote it as an intellectual guide for an understanding of the world confronting the Turkish mind. It was, thus, above all a cultural matter rather than a matter of mere speculative curiosity or a continuation of scientific inquiry. In spite of the fact that this understanding of the role of philosophy is not in accordance with that dominant in the West and that it may tend to obscure the universal humanistic character of philosophy, it has left a tradition in Turkey that is worthy of attention.
Philosophy is conceived in Turkey to be very closely related to culture and society. The teaching of philosophy is believed to be of supreme cultural and pedagogical importance, particularly in a nation that is undergoing a total cultural transformation.
This understanding was inevitable in a country like Turkey where the other two prerequisites for philosophy, advanced science and a tradition of philosophy, did not exist. Both of these were necessary parts of Turkey’s civilizational transformation for which philosophy was viewed as a guide. Gokalp’s emphasis on social philosophy as against the theory of knowledge and scientific philosophy and his obsession for regarding philosophy as a preoccupation with eminently cultural function had at least the virtue of giving a philosophical tinge to all the educational, political, economic, religious, and moral aspects of Turkey’s supreme problems.
This view of philosophical occupation showed itself in two other respects that, in our view, are extremely important for nations in a position similar to that of Turkey with regard to philosophy. Both were of vital importance in establishing a congenial milieu as well as a vehicle of communication in the realization of a philosophical tradition.
The first was the translation of the great philosophical works, Eastern and Western, into the Turkish language. The other was the stabilization and enrichment of a uniform terminology for expressing philosophical concepts.
The first was not merely a matter of practical facility for those who did not know Greek, Arabic, or modern European languages. A serious student of philosophy is supposed to be acquainted with at least some of these languages and, in fact, these are taught today to students of philosophy.
The problem was to use translations for developing the Turkish language to the degree of becoming capable of expressing philosophical thought. A nation that does not have a language to express abstract ideas is bound to remain foreign to philosophy or fail to understand philosophy when expressed in a foreign language.
As Latin in the West, so Arabic in all Muslim countries was the universal medium in the past for expressing philosophical thought. Significantly, the rise of modern European philosophies, several times richer than those in Latin, coincided with the flourishing of modern national languages.
When Turkish came into contact with modern philosophical thinking, it was utterly incapable of expressing philosophical thought without the aid of Arabic or of some foreign language (French). Arabic had ceased to be a medium of philosophical thought that had been killed in the hands of those who used that language. It was, therefore, necessary to improve Turkish as a vehicle of expression for the cultural experiences of a modern nation.
This task had already been faced in the natural sciences and in literature just before the middle of the thirteenth/nineteenth century. A new vocabulary had developed in mathematics, the physical sciences, and medicine on the basis of Arabic. In the field of philosophical sciences, however, the situation was highly inadequate, confused, and unstable until Gokalp’s time. It was impossible to understand a philosophical text without constantly using French terms and expressions.
Gokalp’s contribution in improving this situation was great. He attached so much importance to the question of uniformity in scientific and philosophical terminology that he suggested the holding of an international conference among the Muslim nations to develop modern concepts derived from Arabic. As this never became possible, he worked for the development of a philosophical language in Turkish. He not only standardized the use of the already existing Arabic terms but also coined new terms by derivations from Arabic roots; some of these survive even today.
The establishment of a modernized teaching of philosophy, the translations and adaptations from the world philosophical classics, and the impetus given to the development of Turkish as a means of communicating philosophical thought contributed towards the establishment of a philosophical tradition in Turkey.
Gokalp’s idealism and collectivism gave rise to a variety of reactions. On the whole, however, we may identify two major lines of thought, each being a reaction to one of the two aspects of his philosophy. One was individualism, and the other materialism.
The first reaction was inspired by the study of psychology, especially the Freudian psychology. It was best represented by Mustafa Sekip Tunc, a professor of psychology but an artist at heart. His greatest merit was, perhaps, his contribution to the development of a superior literary style of philosophical writing; he showed skill both in translation and in original composition. In this he was perhaps influenced by his major inspirer, Henri Bergson.
Tunc’s scope of philosophical interest was much wider than that of Gokalp. He avoided the conceptual and doctrinal rigidity of Gokalp. He was influential as a teacher, as an inspirer, and as a man of intuitive thinking, rather than as a systematizer. His individualistic approach to philosophy was not the one in vogue in the thirteenth/nineteenth century.
It was rather a revolt against rationalism and intellectualism; it emphasized the non-rational aspects of the human mind. Useful though it was in giving philosophical thinking greater depth and subtlety, its cultural implications remained complex and elusive. It varied from providing inspiration to liberal progressive leanings to supporting fascist anti-intellectualism. The saddest manifestation of this was Tunc’s preoccupation with spiritism, psychic phenomena, and occult sciences at the end of his life. His was a restless soul and, despite his great efforts to the contrary, his thinking amounted to nothing but a kind of mysticism.
Another successor of Gokalp in cultivating philosophy was Mehmed Izzet. If Tunc’s was an anti-intellectualistic reaction to Gokalp, Izzet’s was a sceptic’s reaction. Much better organized, subtler, and far more systematically versed in both Eastern and Western philosophies, Izzet was a careful thinker and an excellent teacher. He was in search of a moral philosophy, basically idealistic, oriented to a humanistic view of freedom. With his untimely death in 1349/1930 however, terminated conscientious, thoughtful work.
Both Tunc and Izzet were expressions of an attempt to break with Gokalp’s nationalism in order to widen the horizons of philosophical thinking. Another reaction in this direction came with the rebirth of materialism, this time in the form of historical materialism. It is hardly possible to speak of this as a philosophical movement. It had neither a philosophical exponent of even mediocre stature nor any following in the academic circles. Its importance lay in its diffusedness and in its infiltration in bits, not as a system, into the intellectual make-up of the generations that sought liberation from Gokalp’s idealism.
The same may be said of another philosophy of action: pragmatism. Although pragmatism never had a systematic presentation in the hands of a thinker comparable to Gokalp, it penetrated into the several facets of the Turkish mind and provided another diffused form of escape from Gokalp’s influence.
All of these were expressions of a challenge to philosophy by the radical reforms carried out under Kemal Ataturk. All these were mere experiments in discovering new values compatible with those that were supposed to reign in modern civilization. Remembering the philosophical chaos reigning in the Western mind, one may excuse the Turkish thinkers for failing in their philosophical ventures.
Once plunged into the dazzling stage of the contemporary Western philosophy, the attempts of a number of Turkish thinkers, whose names would be too numerous to mention, became once again restless, searching for au orientation. None of these had the chance or capacity to select, digest, and systematize something that would take root as a philosophical movement.
The instability just illustrated was an inevitable consequence of the Turkish thinkers’ plunge into the world of Western philosophy supported by a long tradition as well as by a constantly changing cultural and scientific background. It has shown that Turkey has not yet reached the stage of having genuine philosophical schools and representatives and that there is still a long road to travel.
Quite naturally, one reaction to this philosophical flux has been a growing distrust of philosophizing. A group of German scientists and philosophers, who, expelled from Germany, taught in the Turkish universities, have contributed to this trend. Not by any coincidence, most of them were internationally known representatives of logical positivism. Hardly a trace of their philosophy has remained behind them in Turkey, but they left a deep impression by making the Turkish students of philosophy see what great and difficult tasks they have before them.
Discouraging though it may seem, philosophy at present is only a matter of disciplined academic teaching. The emphasis is upon the history of philosophy. The University of Istanbul, in particular, can boast of having a presentable staff of professors of philosophy. The history of Islamic philosophy is gaining special interest. More value is being given to research, especially historical, than to attempts at original thinking. This, perhaps, is the right path.
After about one century of crawling, flying, and falling, a tradition is growing. The Turkish language has a rich literature in the world’s philosophy available to Turkish students. A stage of careful learning and research has come. The longer this stage lasts, the more likely will it be possible one day to speak of the existence of a genuine philosophical tradition in Turkey.
The following is not an exhaustive bibliography of the publications of philosophical nature. It does not include publications of the following categories: (a) philosophical works translated from European languages; (b) philosophical classics translated from non-Turkish languages; (c) works of Muslim philosophers of the past; (d) philosophical dictionaries; and (e) text-books on philosophical disciplines. The great majority of the philosophical publications in modern Turkey fall under the above categories.
The following contains writings concerning the philosophical trends and problems relating to the role of philosophy in the social and cultural transformation of modem Turkey.
1. Pre-Nineteenth Century - Some of the madrasahs of the capital of the Ottoman Empire were institutions of higher learning. In the early stage of the history of this Empire teaching in them was more legal and scientific than philosophical in tenor. In course of time, these institutions lost their interest in science and confined themselves to the study of law, with the so-called “religious sciences” as subsidiary disciplines. What we might call “philosophy” was connected with tasawwuf that was cultivated outside the madrasahs. Ibn al-Arabi and Rumi were the thinkers having the greatest influence on the educated classes. See Katib Chelebi (Hajji Khalifah), Mizan al-Haqq fi Ikhtiyar al-Ahaqq, translated by G. L. Lewis as The Balance of Truth, London, 1957; A. Adnan Adivar, Osmanli Turklerinde Ilim, Istanbul, 1943, particularly pp. 105-06. There arose during the eleventh/seventeenth century a strong fundamentalist opposition to philosophy and mysticism both of which were branded as ilhad. This was followed in the twelfth/eighteenth century by the trends of scepticism, deism, and even atheism, perhaps as a reaction. No study of these is available.
2. The Earliest Phase of the Modern Era - The earliest manifestations of a modern philosophical tendency arose in the middle of the thirteenth/nineteenth century and were a reflection of the European Enlightenment. Some acquaintance with the modem European thinking, notably with Voltaire, goes back to the late twelfth/eighteenth century in which the introduction of the European natural sciences and medicine played an important role. See Cevdet Pasha, Tarih, Vol. VIII, Istanbul, 1303 A. H., pp. 212-14, and Vol. XII, Istanbul, 1301 A. H., p. 212. The first translation from European philosophy appeared in 1276/1859 in a collection of selections entitled Muhaverat-i Hikemiye (Philosophical Dialogues) by Tahir Munif (later Pasha). This contained selections from the writings of Voltaire, Fenelon, and Fontenelle. During the Tanzimat period (1838-1916), the Turkish thinkers were interested mostly in the ideas of John Locke, Montesquieu, Rousseau, Diderot, d’Holbach, Helvetius, and Cabanis. The influence of materialism, especially that of Ludwig Buchner, was represented by Tahsin who was the first director of the Dar al-Funun and a friend of Jamal al-Din Afghani. The philosophy of natural rights and social contract was reflected in the writings of Namik Kemal. See Serif Hulusi, “Namik Kemal ‘in Eserleri,” in Namik Kemal Hakkinda, Istanbul, 1942, pp. 395-401; M. Kaplan, Namik Kemal, Istanbul, 1948, p.31; C. 0. Tutengil, Montesquieu ‘nun Siyasi ve Iktisadi Fikirleri, Istanbul, 1956, Chap. IV, pp. 53-73; Kamiran Birand, “18 inci Asir Fransiz Tefekkuru ve Namik Kemal,” in Felsefe Arkivi, Istanbul, 1945, Vol. 1, No. 1, pp. 90-140; and Aydinlanma Devri Devlet Felsefesinin Tanzimata Tesirleri, Ankara, 1955.
3. Period of Reaction (1295/1878-1326/1908) - No progress in the development of philosophical thinking was recorded during this period. The period was dominated by writings inspired by Afghani and Ahmed Midhat, the famous publicists of the period, dedicated to the refutation of materialistic systems. Despite this, naturalistic trends of the European thought continued their penetration and were, furthermore, strengthened by the coming of the ideas of evolution. Towards the end of the period, the writers became more acquainted with Western philosophers, particularly with the ideas of Darwin, Haeckel, Spencer, and Auguste Comte, but these remained implicit and were never expressed in writings until the coming of the Mesrutiyet (Constitutional) period. No monographic study is available about this period. In general, see H. Z. Ulken, “Tanzimattan Sonra Fikir Hareketleri,” in Tanzimat, Istanbul, 1940, pp. 757-75.
4. The Constitutional Period - After 1908, various philosophical tendencies came to light. Two philosophico-sociological reviews were published: Yeni Felsefe Mecmuasi, Salonika, and Ulum-u Ictimaiye ve Iktisadiye Mecmuasi, Istanbul. The major trends were (a) evolutionism, (b) positivism, and (c) idealism. There was also a weak and vague interest in socialism. See H. Z. Ulken, “Bizde Fikir Cereyanlari,” in Felsefe ve Ictimaiyat Mecmuasi, Istanbul, 1927, Vol. I, No. 4, pp. 311-14; “Turkiyede Positivism Temayulu,” in Insan, Istanbul, 1939, No. 11, pp. 849-53; “Turkiyede Idealism Temayulu,” ibid., Istanbul, 1939, No. 12, pp. 929-38; C. 0. Tutengil, Prens Sabahaddin, Istanbul, 1954. The works produced by writers and translators such as Baha Tevfik, Ahmed Nebil, Haydar Rifat, Subhi Edhem, Mustafa Subhi, Edhem Necdet, and others were not original but transmitted mostly Western philosophical ideas. The idealistic trend was ushered in by Zia Gokalp; see his Turkish Nationalism and Western Civilization, translated and edited by N. Berkes, London and New York, 1959, pp. 46ff.
5. The Republican Period - The study of philosophy in the form of teaching, writing, or translation began in this period in the real sense. Translations from Western philosophers such as Bergson, James, and Dewey, and, later, Russell and the logical positivists, phenomenologists, and, finally, the existentialists became more extensive. This is the period of a definitive turn to Western philosophy. During the 1930’s the translation of philosophical classics, ranging from Plato to Russell, began. Scores of major philosophical works were published under the Ministry of Education. The translation work is still in progress. The philosophical reviews of the period were Felsefe ve Ictimaiyat Mecmuasi, Istanbul, 1927-1930, edited by Mehmed Servet; Felsefe Yillig, Istanbul, 1931-1932, edited by H. Z. Ulken; Is, Istanbul, 1934, edited by F. Findikoglu; Edebiyat Fakultesi Mecmuasi, Istanbul, 1916-1917 and 1922-1938; Felsefe Arkivi, Istanbul, 1948. A Philosophical Society was founded in Istanbul in 1928. About the problems of philosophy and the major trends of thought in general, see the following: Mustafa Sekip, Tunc, “Turk Inkilabinin Felsefeye Tesiri,” in Hayat, Ankara, 1927, No. 9, pp. 164-65; Memleketimizde Felsefenin Inkisafi Icin Lazim Gelen Sartlar, Ankara, 1938; Mehmed Izzet, “Dar-ul-Fununda Felsefe Dersleri,” in Edebiyat Fakultesi Mecmuasi, Istanbul, 1925, Vol. IV, No. 2, pp. 121-32; Mehmed Servet, “Fikir Hayatimizda Bir Muhasebe,” in Hayat, Ankara, 1929, Vol. V, Nos. 116-31-this is the best survey of the trends before 1929; H. Z. Ulken, “Turk Felsefe Dilinin Gelismesi,” in Felsefe Tercumerleri Dergisi, Vol. 1, No. 1, Istanbul, 1947, pp. 135-43. The following may be listed among the works containing some contribution to original thinking and also as a sample of the range of the philosophical interest during the last three decades: Mehmed Izzet, Milliyet Nazariyeleri ve Milli Hayat, Istanbul, 1925; “Buyuk Insanlar ve Musir Hayat,” in Edebiyat Fakultesi Mecmuasi, Istanbul, 1923, Vol. III, No. 1, pp. 51-61, Nos. 2-3, pp. 91-102; Mustafa Sekip (Tunc), Terakki Fikrinin Mense ve Tekamulu, Istanbul, 1928; Bir Din Felsefesine Dogru, Istanbul, 1959; Hilmi Ziya Ulken, Ask Ahlaki, Istanbul, 1931 (the latter has been the most prolific author of the period; he has written practically on every branch of philosophy, but the above seems to be his most original work); A. Adnan-Adivar, Tarih Boyunca Ilim ve Din, 2 Vols., Istanbul, 1944; Macit Gokberk, Kant ile Herder’in Tarih Anlyislari, Istanbul, 1948; Kamiran Birand, Dilthey ve Rickert’te Manevi Ilimlerin Temellendi-rilmesi, Ankara, 1954; Nermi Uygur, Edmund Husserl’de Baskasinin Ben’i Problemi, Istanbul, 1958.