Nationalist bias in Turkish official discourse on hate speech: a Rawlsian criticism

This article analyzes the approach in Turkey on hate speech by evaluating legal regulations, decisions and public responses. We argue that the Turkish case cultivates neither a lenient, nor a restrictive response to hate speech, because a strong nationalist bias seems to be at work in interpreting, penalizing or allowing hate speech. The peculiarity of the Turkish case stems from a prejudice that hate speech might be conducted only against the nation, unity of the state, or the principles of regime, rather than against vulnerable groups or identities. By focusing on the Hrant Dink case among others we try to demonstrate the most striking example of this prejudice.


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This thesis investigates the role of the rights-based civil society organizations in promoting democratization in Turkey. I consider rights-based civil society organizations as focal actors for democratization because they initiate, secure and advance democratic rule by upholding liberties and freedoms. From the late Ottoman period to the 198ights-based civil society organizations were absent. However, after the 1980s, they emerged to represent different right themes. By employing the existing literature on...
Citation Formats
C. Deveci, “Nationalist bias in Turkish official discourse on hate speech: a Rawlsian criticism,” TURKISH STUDIES, pp. 26–48, 2019, Accessed: 00, 2020. [Online]. Available: