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The resistance committees : Devrimci Yol and the question of revolutionary organization in Turkey in the late 1970s

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2008
Bozkurt, Sümercan
This thesis aims to examine the experiences of the resistance committees organized by a revolutionary Movement, Devrimci Yol (Revolutionary Way), in Turkey in the late 1970s. More specifically it focuses on Devrimci Yol’s formulations concerning the issue of revolutionary organization, how it and the resistance committee experiences within their contexts- embodied the tension between being organized in accordance with initiating change within the social relations of everyday life and being organized in accordance with a strategy of state takeover. The study argues that Devrimci Yol’s attempt towards the reconciliation of these two understandings gave the Movement its peculiarity within the left in Turkey. With all their constraints the resistance committees and accompanying experiences of people’s and workplace committees pointed out a logic of revolutionary organization different from the predominant one in which any kind of revolutionary transformation was postponed until the forthcoming revolution. When examining Devrimci Yol and the resistance committees, the study refers to different approaches to the question of revolutionary organization in Marxist theory and practice.