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Of çapulcus, tears, and broken trees : A report from Istanbul

ALS

One quick way to grab the inner core of the recent events in Turkey linked to the Gezi Park protest is by having a look at the quick evolution of the use of the word çapulcu, now adopted in its verbal form in many western languages (chapulling, tschapulieren, ciapullare, chapuller, chapular etc.). As Prime Minister Erdoğan used the word to refer to Gezi Park demonstrators, it is possible to get an insight of the events simply by looking at the distance between language and reality in the use of the word. Erdoğan’s scornful and hasty dismissal of the phenomenon opened the way to a dialectical development of the denotation of the word, now proudly adopted by demonstrators as a unifying name.

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ALS: Of çapulcus, tears, and broken trees. A report from Istanbul. 2013.

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