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The Justice and Development Party's Conception of “Conservative Democracy”: Invention or Reinterpretation?

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This article investigates the notion of “conservative democracy” in the discourse of the Justice and Development Party (Adalet ve Kalkınma Partisi, AKP) in relation to the concepts of change and continuity. It argues that “conservative democracy,” which is presented as a “genuine contribution” of the AKP to Turkish politics, is actually a continuation of a tradition within Turkish conservative literature rather than a product of the moment. Hence, contrary to the party's claim, “conservative democracy” is not an invented but a reinterpreted concept. It is reformulated pragmatically to illustrate a rupture from the Islamist background of the party leaders.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Political Science, Bilkent University, Ankara, Turkey

Publication date: December 1, 2009

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