Patterns of ‘Othering’ in Turkey: A Study of Ethnic, Ideological, and Sectarian Polarisation

Ayşe Betül Çelik, Rezarta Bilali, Yeshim Iqbal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study explores who Turkish citizens view as the Other, their perceptions, evaluations, and the degree of Othering of these groups in the private and public spheres. Drawing from varied political science and social psychology literature, it also examines the role of social contact, perceived threat, and the strength of national and religious identification in predicting levels of Othering. Using a national representative sample, the findings reveal that Kurds are the most Othered group in the private sphere, while both Kurds and AKP (Adalet ve Kalkınma Partisi–Justice and Development Party) supporters are the most Othered groups in the public sphere. Regardless of who the Other is, lower social contact and higher levels of perceived threat are associated with higher levels of Othering of Kurds, Alevis, AKP supporters, and AKP opponents in both the private and public spheres.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)217-238
Number of pages22
JournalSouth European Society and Politics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 3 2017


  • Othering
  • Turkey
  • ethnicity
  • ideological divide
  • polarisation
  • sectarianism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science


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