The political struggle on and at public space : the case of Kızılay Square

İlkay, Yasemin
In Turkey, by 1980, a transformation has been observed on both the character of the societal opposition and the meaning, function, and spatial form of public spaces, which were characterized to be essential political spaces of a period. Kızılay Square was ‘the preferred space’ by the opposition during the struggle against Democrat Party in 1960’s; however demonstrations were expelled out of the square by legal regulations and sanctions. On one hand, legally, Kızılay Square could not be the scene of societal opposition; on the other hand the meaning on the base of being a ‘political scene’ has continued. However, spatial implementations, regulated by Ankara Metropolitan Municipality, occurred as an attempt to turn the square from a possible pedestrian zone to a junction. Since the period it has been conceived and designed as a socio-spatial project of new established republic in 1925, Kızılay Square has been transformed within its (historical) meaning, (urban) function and (spatial) form through changing contradictions and actors within political, social and economic context. This transformation has been experienced through political contradiction and struggle. Between the years 1960 and 1980, during which the societal opposition arouse, with respect to differentiating actors and movements, the conflict over meaning, function and form of the square also has differentiated from the meaning, form and function determined in the nation state construction process. Through this research, it is aimed to examine how the political contradiction and struggle on three dimensions of Kızılay Square has been transformed, within a historical perspective.


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Citation Formats
Y. İlkay, “The political struggle on and at public space : the case of Kızılay Square,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2007.