Idealist Teacher as the Bearer of the Republic Modernization


The present study focuses on the republic teacher image as one of the most important elements in trans- ferring Republican era Turkish modernization to the public. The primary aim of our study was to problematize the “republic teachers” reality as the representatives and implementors of the Turkish modernization process within the context of early Republic era; try to understand the formation of the teacher image of this period and to put forth the implications of this image. In this scope, the study was designed within the framework of the qualitative research method and study data were tried to be collected from a wide range. As such, the present study is comprised of three main headings apart from the introduction and conclusion sections. The first heading focuses on the ideological and political foundations of the Republic era Turkish modernization, followed by the characteristics with which the identity of republic teachers has been built from state discourse to teacher magazines and the final heading opens the political functions of the republic teachers for discussion. Our study shows that teachers were appointed as the most important elements of the modernization period during a time when eighty percent of the society lived in villages. It is a very difficult goal to increase and try to send the small number of teacher staff members to the most distant regions of the country in an effort to transform the society. In this scope, it is observed that the identity of the idealist republican teacher has been put forward with its effects ongoing until today. This identity that was built as part of the state discourse was also embraced and regenerated by the teachers of the era and displays characteristics of an idealized identity.


National education ideology teacher early period Turkish Republic Turkish modernization Kemalism