Sakıp Sabancı Center 2024 Annual Lecture: Aslı Ü Bâlı, “Constitionalism and the “New” Turkey”

The Sakıp Sabancı Center for Turkish Studies at Columbia University announces our 2023-2024 annual lecture will feature Aslı Ü. Bâli, Professor of Law at Yale University, discussing "Constitutionalism and the "New" Turkey," this April 17, starting at 4:00 PM (EST)

Aslı Bâli will be introduced by Türküler Işıksel (Columbia University). The lecture will be both in person in Low Library on the Columbia University campus and livestreamed on Zoom.

Turkey has a long history of constitutionalism dating back to the first Ottoman Constitution of 1876. Yet, constitutional rule has proven particularly vulnerable to military coups and executive aggrandizement. The supreme law of the land remains the 1982 constitution that was enacted under military rule. Most recently, the introduction of a presidential system through a controversial referendum has reversed attempts at liberal constitution-making that had long been under debate.

What has been the trajectory of constitution making in Turkey and what factors have inhibited the enactment of a liberal constitutional order? What has been the role of the Turkish Constitutional Court in promoting and undermining rights struggles? How has the relationship between judicial independence and democratic consolidation affected the course of constitution-making in Turkey? What factors have most directly contributed to the democratic erosion and rising authoritarianism that now characterize Turkey's political and constitutional order? What are the prospects for yet another "new" constitutional project at the beginning of the second century of the Turkish republic?

This talk will seek to answer these questions by offering an analysis of the history of constitutionalism in Turkey that has culminated in the experiments with constitution-making and unmaking of the last decade, which now threaten to entrench the "new" Turkey through another exercise of constitutional reinvention.

Wednesday, April 17 Low Library Faculty Room 

Lecture: 4:00-5:30 pm Reception: 5:30-6:30 pm

Registration: bit.ly/SSCReg2024 
Zoom Streaming: bit.ly/Lecture2024

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