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Discourse and Identity in Turkish Media

Edited By Süheyla Nil Mustafa and Ayşe Dilara Bostan

Mainstream media offer audiences identities in accordance with certain definitions of “normal behavior” as given in hegemonic discourses. This book explores the hegemonic/normative discourses circulating in the Turkish mainstream media. Such an analysis provides the mental codes and frameworks offered to the ordinary Turkish people “subjected” to the mass media throughout their daily lives. Each chapter employs different methods for discursive analysis and media formats. Since the authors inquire into the socio-political reality and conjunctures upon which these media discourses are constituted, the book offers much to those readers investigating both the Turkish media and the socio-political transformation that took place in Turkey in the past two decades.

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Chapter 1 Reading the Turkish Femininity through the Proceedings of a Social Drama Enacted in a Celebrity Gossip TV Program (Süheyla Nil Mustafa)


Süheyla Nil Mustafa

Abstract: This article analyzes the process involving the spread of a social crisis that broke out in social media platform into traditional mass media and its resolution upon being featured and judged in a celebrity gossip TV show in line with the conceptual framework provided by the prominent anthropologist Victor Turner. For Turner, the crisis situations provide greater insight into the normative structures or hegemonic discourses in society since the norms are being entrenched and become more visible along the lines of defense in times of social crises. Turner defines the processual nature of any social conflict in terms of his concept of social drama. In line with Turner’s argumentation, this paper suggests that the social conflicts represented on the television shows also reveal significant comprehension with respect to the normative discourses of the contemporary Turkish society. In our case, the discussions held on a certain celebrity gossip show will be examined through the Foucauldian discourse analysis to understand how the existing hegemonic discourses of femininity and masculinity in contemporary Turkey are reproduced and modified throughout the narratives held in the program. The literature on daytime television talk shows in Turkey mostly argue that the traditional feminine identity in accordance with the hegemonic patriarchal discourse in Turkey is reproduced in these programs. This paper shows that television programs do not just reproduce the existing norms and identities, but traditional discursive codes of Turkish feminine identity are modified as an effect of the juxtaposition of...

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