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Euroscepticism in Turkey

Power and Beyond

Can Büyükbay

This book examines the construction of Euroscepticism in civil society discourse, focusing on Turkey’s possible EU-membership, the ongoing political struggles between different political camps in Turkey and general Western discourse. Applying semi-structured qualitative interviews with Civil Society Organisation leaders and Critical Discourse Analysis, the study shows how civil society leaders evaluate Europe and the European Integration of Turkey. It appears that there are multiple Eurosceptical argumentation strategies in the discourses varying according to ideological background and pro-government and anti-government positioning.
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4. Empirical Analysis


In this chapter, the data, focussing on Eurosceptic argumentation strategies is assessed. Moreover I investigate 1) Nomination and Predication of EU and Europe, 2) Eurosceptic Perspectivation, and 3) Intensification and Mitigation of Euroscepticism. Referential (or nomination) strategies are strategies by means of which speakers classify social actors (see van Leeuwen 1996). In predicational strategies, speakers assign to social actors positive or negative attributes. In Khan’s (2012) terms, “…in argumentation strategies, predications function as topoi to justify discrimination and/or exclusion. In perspectivation strategies, speakers express their own point of view by appraising the propositions they are communicating.” In intensification or mitigation strategies, speakers strengthen or weaken the epistemic status of particular propositions (Reisigl and Wodak 2001). The central question that I try to answer in this chapter is how is Euroscepticism is constructed as a discursive formation by civil society leaders.

4.1 Referential, Nomination and Predication Strategies

In this section, I highlight how social actors are linguistically constructed by being named and how civil society elites refer to Europe and EU linguistically. The textual data examined in this study shows that the core referential/nomination strategy is the construction of a dual approach towards Europe. In the following analysis, I examine the referent/nominational strategies that lie at the core of the discursive construction of civil-society-based Eurosepticism, before proceeding to the predication strategies, namely into an analysis how certain values are attributed to these concepts. The referent/nominational strategies that lie at the heart of the discursive construction...

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