'Çekme' ritual in a village of Black Sea region in Turkey: bride kidnapping as a critique of alternative systems of marriage

Beşir, Fethiye
This study aims to provide a criticism to the literature which explains bride kidnapping as an alternative marriage system through an ethnographic study conducted in a village of Black Sea Region. In this study, first of all, practice of çekme is defined as ritual on the basis of formal and repetitive action. Consensus of the public opinion and the ceremonial action are considered in the ritual conceptualization. In addition to that, how women try to cope with their marriages after the çekme practice will be put forward. In doing that, with the help of 'kaide atma' which is a tradition among women, how Karadeniz women define and value themselves in contrast to their popular portrayal of strong but passive in decision making mechanisms. This thesis, while trying to give meaning to bride kidnapping, which is a form of marriage, through the transmission of experiences of women; does that without ignoring the different experiences of women, without entering the hierarchical web of relations and in the light of the possibility of strong objectivity about womanhood in parallel to the aims of Feminist Standpoint Theory, which is used as epistemological and methodological ground.