Reconstruction of Turkishness among the Turkish immigrants in Rochester

Orhaner, Berkay
This thesis examines the history of Turks migrated from Turkey to Rochester and their changing constructions of identities. In the early 1960’s, there was only a small group of Turkish immigrants in Rochester, who were well educated professionals. After 1967, Turkish tailors and their families, who were seeking better employment in Western countries started to migrate to Rochester. Different than the common aspect of homeland based Turkish labor migration to West, Turkish tailors in Rochester came from different cities of Turkey. As a result of the communication between high skilled Turks and the tailor-migrants, Turkish Society of Rochester was founded as a distinctive immigrant association. This study focuses on Turkish Society of Rochester and the other Turkish organizations in Rochester which were established after 1990’s, in order to investigate the role of ethnic, cultural and political identities on the formation of collective behavior of Turks in Rochester. The thesis considers the concept of integration as a bidirectional phenomenon, whereby Turks can integrate with the larger American society and/or with the Turkish community within the US as well. This study has concluded that the religious identity is becoming more prominent within the changing social context of Rochester.


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Citation Formats
B. Orhaner, “Reconstruction of Turkishness among the Turkish immigrants in Rochester,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2013.