A. (Alaettin) Carikci

  • PhD student
  • Memory Studies, Contemporary Turkish Art

Fields of interest

  • Memory and Trauma Studies
  • Critical Theory and Contemporary Art
  • Holocaust and Genocide Studies
  • Nationalism and Minorities in Turkey
  • Cultural Identity


Since the establishment of the Republic of Turkey in 1923, one of the goals of the founding leaders has been to disassociate the brand new republic from the former Ottoman Empire legacies. This meant introducing Latin alphabet, extended rights to women and adopting a new capital, namely, Ankara. This transformation not only created a new democratic and secular state but also facilitated the collective amnesia related to the multi-cultural past of the Ottoman Empire and it emphasized the homogenous character of the new republic. As a result of the introduction of the Latin alphabet the citizens of the new government were not able to comprehend Ottoman Turkish anymore. Thus, a nation with a distorted memory would emerge and the new Turkish state would succeed in creating its imagined community.This foundation mythology has been created with the intention of dictating modern Turkish citizens about what to remember, whom to admire and what to forget. Therefore, the foundation of Modern Turkey is based on certain stigmatizations and taboos about the non-moslem communities. Briefly, my research attempts to offer a survey of experiencing the history of remembrance of the Armenians as a memorial practise in modern Turkey. I analyze artistic commemorations,produced outside the sphere of what is officially sanctioned in the Turkish society in the 21st century, such as contemporary art works, books and films for this memory studies project.

Teaching activities

Courses taught as a teaching assistant in Sabancı University,Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Istanbul,Turkey

Fall 2006
Humanities 202: Major Works of Western Art TA

Spring 2007
Humanities 202: Major Works of Western Art TA

Fall 2008
History of Art 426: The Master of Renaissance, Leonardo da Vinci TA

Spring 2008
History of Art 426:The Master of Renaissance, Leonardo da Vinci TA

Curriculum vitae

2010 to date: Ph.D Candidate
Leiden University Institute for Cultural Disciplines
HUYGENS Scholarship Fellow 2010-2014
Advisors: Prof. Ernst van Alphen and Dr.Yasco Horsman

July-August 2007: University of Toronto,Human Rights Summer School,Toronto,Canada

2006 to 2008: Master Degree
Sabancı University,Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences,Istanbul,Turkey
MA in Cultural Studies
SU MA Fellowship throughout MA Studies

2005 Spring Semester: Leiden University, Humanities Department, Erasmus exchange student.

2002 to 2006:  Bachelor Degree
Istanbul Bilgi University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Istanbul, Turkey
BA in Comparative Literature with a minor degree in International Relations.
IBU BA Fellowship throughout BA Studies
3rd ranking in the Department class of 2006 among 22 students

Conference Presentations:

'Uncanny memorial landscapes of Istanbul, Paper presented at 2012 Matchpoint Seminars, Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark, (May, 2012)

'Contesting the denialism of the Armenian Genocide through uncanny memorial projects in Istanbul, Paper presented at 2012 Towards a Common Past, Conflicting Memories on Contemporary Europe Conference, Lund University, Lund,Sweden,(May 2012)

'Denialism versus Remembrance of the Armenian Catastrophe in Modern Turkey’, Paper presented at 2011 Conference of the International Genocide Scholars, Buenos Aires, Argentina, (July 2011).

‘Exploring Armenian Memory and Loss in Markar Esayan’s Karşılaşma’, Paper presented at 2011 Conference of the American Comparative Literature Association(ACLA), Vancouver, Canada, (April 2011).

‘Narrativization of the Catastrophe in Modern Armenian-Turkish Literature’, Paper presented at 2010 Graduate Student Colloquium in Armenian Studies at UCLA, Los Angeles, USA, (February 2010).

‘Surp Khach Church or Akthamar Museum?: A Musealization and Turkification Story’, Paper presented at Harvard University Armenian Society Student Club, Boston, USA, (April 2009).

‘En(gendering) Trauma in the Late Ottoman Empire Period’, Paper presented at the 2009 Conference of the Clark University International Graduate Student's Conference on Holocaust and Genocide Studies, Boston, USA, (April 2009).

‘Unearthing the Past, Endangering the Future: The Trend of Survivor Memoirs in Turkey’, Paper presented at Graduate Student Colloquium in Armenian Studies at UCLA, Los Angeles, USA, (February 2008).

Last Modified: 10-12-2015