Americanization of the Popular Culture in the 1950’s Turkish Magazine: Hayat

Banu Dağtaş

Abstract: In this study mediator role of the Turkish magazine Hayat, in Turkey’s transition from an orientation to Eurepean images to American ones was questioned. The issues of 1957 and 1958 were covered-soon after the change of the name of the magazine with thepdf-animated-gif inspiration of American Life. This transition in cultural life was discussed under the title of Turkish modernization-launched under Ottomans and continued under the Republic. From the beginning the main scope of Turkish modernization was to be westernized. The visual images which were accepted as the marker of Americanization were categorized and discussed in accordance their themes: Hollywood icons in the covers; Hollywood icons in the advertisements; News on America; News on Hollywood; Female sexuality; New /modern Turkish women. In accordance to the covered visual images, Americanization was discussed together with the concept of the “new woman”- well symbol of the American modernization with the specifities of the liberation of the female body in the public sphere. These specifities had been well represented by the Hollywood icons of the time.

Key words: Americanization; Turkish magazine Hayat; Visual Culture; 1950’s of Turkey; New Woman; Consumption; Female Sexuality; Hoollywood Icons.

Introduction

The ultimate goal of Turkey’s modernization project launched under the Ottamans and continued under the Republic, was to move the country closer towards the West. As part of this process mounting demands for the “Westernization” of cultural life, as well as for the adaptation of ‘western’ economic and political institutions were articulated and pursued by the elites spearheading this move. The press played an active role both in spreading western values and in building the nation-wide support needed to install them in everyday life and thinking1.

The effects of westernization can be observed in both the newspapers and magazine journals and looking at the coverage they provided we can see a shift from the original adherence to European models to a greater reliance on American models. After World War II magazines started to include news about Hollywood stars and images of their life styles became more and more prominent. This information was supplemented in the Turkish press with stories about everyday American life styles. This growing attention was not accidental. After World War II the USA, which had escaped both war damage and invasion, consolidated its position as the dominant economic and political power in Western world, using the array of international institutions created by the Bretton Woods agreements to cement its ascendency. In the context of the ‘Cold war’ with the Soviet Union, and the policy of “containing” the spread of communism, it made a particular effort to cultivate positive relations with the countries geographically closer to “Eastern Bloc”, including Turkey, which was admitted as a member of the NATO military alliance, a position that obliged it to send troops to the ongoing war in Korea. At the same time, the USA was also waging a ‘war for hearts and minds’ based around the promotion of the “American life style”. In Turkey it met with some success with the Democrat Party, the ruling party of the period, promising to create a “small America in every neighborhood of Turkey”. I want to suggest in this paper that the magazine Hayat, played an important role in articulating and supporting this project.

Previously called “Resimli Hayat” (Life Illustrated), the magazine changed its name to “Hayat” (Life) in 1956 inspired by the famous American magazine “Life” and remained an important publication until the 1980s. Following the model of ‘Life’ the coverage was organized around visual images I want to argue that Hayat acted as a key broker or mediator in Turkey’s transition from an orientation to European images to an orientation to American ones. The material presented here draws on preliminary work for a more comprehensive project aimed at examining all the issues of Hayat magazine. It focuses specifically on the two years directly after the magazine changed its name in 1956. It covers the issues for first and second weeks of the October 1957- November 1957 and September 1957 and those for the second and third weeks of January 1958- February 1958 and March 1958. However, before exploring the themes the magazine explored over this period in more detail we need to place this key moment of transition in context.

The Westernization of the Cultural Field in the Ottoman-Turkish Modernization Process

Modernity, as both an idea and an institutional complex orginated in Western Europe, but has been exported around the World under the banner of “modernization”. Modernization in Turkey began under the Ottomans during the 19th century and was continued with the declaration of the Turkish Republic in 1923.

Ottoman Modernization started first in the military in 1826 and was then extended with administrative and educational reforms. The Ottoman-British Trade Treaty of 1838 consolidated economic relations with the West. These initial interventions were followed by a series of other initaitives stretching over almost a century: Tanzimat (1839)- reordering and basic rights given to the citizens (teba); Islahat (1856)-the centralization and the rise of publishing; the declaration of the First Constitution (1876); the declaration of the II: Constitutional Monarchy (1908); and the establishment of the Turkish Republic (1923).

Ottoman-Turkish modernization was a top-down process promoted by state bureuracrats with the aim of creating the conditions in which they would resemble their equivalents in Europe while striving to reshape them. They had no hesitation in identifying modernization with Westernization and they set out to position Turkey as a ‘Western’ civilization by modernizing Turkish institutions and culture 2. Throughout this process the press played an active role in spreading western values and in building nation-wide support for the modernisartion project. Koloğlu3 , summarises the main missions of the official journalists supporting these ‘modernizing Turks’ as follows: Advocacy of Tanzimat (reordering), taking the first steps on the way of secularization, defence of centralism, advocacy of world views which are Europe-centred, reference to European sources, simplicifation of the language and the enchancement of Western words and concepts, and having the goal of education rather than journalism. Koloğlu 4 also points out that modern consumer tendencies and a “European life style” were actively promoted by the French newspapers issued during that period. The European life style and the new relationships it brought were, later on, dealt with as the main theme in the novels of leading Turkish authors such as Ahmet Mithat, Recaizade Ekrem, Halid Ziya and Yakup Kadri.

The effect of the development of the markets and consumerism was felt particularly forcefully in the capital city-İstanbul, especially among the minorities and the state officials. The area of the city known as Beyoğlu-Pera, became a key location reflecting the material aspects of “European culture” and was frequently featured in art works ranging from literature to history. The names given to some of the best known public places in this area acted as potent symbols of Westernization / Europeanization might mean in practice. There were the cafes such as the Cafe Royal, Antilope, Moska; bistros such as Bartoli, Gambrinus, Labyrinthe, Lyod; restaurants such as Tokatlıyan and Yani; and famous patisseries such as Le Bon, Pomme d’or 5. Similarly, shoppers of the period could browse the consumer goods displayed in the new department stores in Beyoglu modelled on the “Bon Marche” in Paris. Westernization was also demonstrated on a daily basis in the choice of clothing. In İstanbul at that time men began to wear jackets, French shirts, ties, coats, and gloves, and carry umbrellas and walking sticks and women began to use fur coats, cloaks, gloves, hand bags and corsets. The technological innovations represented by gramophones, bicycles and photographs also become increasingly common possessions 6 .

One of the leading names in Turkish literature, Tanpınar, describes Beyoğlu at that time as:

A symbol of European life style with its European style restaurants and cafes as well as luxurious shops importing many items from Europe ranging from simple daily products to the most expensive ones. The fashion is inspired by European fashion centers, especially Paris. Clothing and night life are affected accordingly. Although these are available only for a small group of people in the society, a car produced in Bendre factory, Boulevard theater, café chantant, French and English style furniture, thoroughbred racing and coach horses, European style dinner, French wine, foreigner teacher, foreign language teacher have all become important components of urban life together with local traditions such as storytelling, Karagöz and newly emerging literature 7 .

Ortaylı, a distinguished historian who studies 19th century Ottoman modernization, defines the Westernization / Europeanization of Beyoğlu as follows:

Beyoğlu was a gate opening to Europe for Turks living in İstanbul with its shops selling European products and foreign bookstores, where the intellectuals who admired European life style met. … Also with its cafes, restaurants and hotels –though limited in number- and, finally, newly emerging apartment life. When people started to move to Beyoğlu and the areas nearby and the time spent there increased, this small neighborhood was no longer a European suburb with its theaters, taste of shopping and nightlife. It acquired an Ottoman style 8 .

Alongside this material Westernization / Europenization of the daily life in Beyoğlu-Istanbul, after the Tanzimat, Western thinking rapidly gained ground among state officials and elites, many of whom had been educated in the West. At the end of the 19th century, this group came to be called “İttihat ve Terakki” (Jenue Turks). These Young Ottomans were mostly journalists, authors and new appointed state officials. The authors of the first Turkish modern novels were also the members of the Young Ottomans for certain time period. They wanted to establish a constitutional monarchy. The met with some initial success, forcing the Sultan Abdülhamid to accept the First Constitution, but this setllement only lasted for two years only. Mostly educated in the West, they championed the basic values of the French Revolution, liberalism and the constitutional monarchy and modern citizenship. Mardin 9 calls this group “social activators” since discounted with what they saw as the unduly slow pace of modernization they wanted to facilitate social mobilization. According to Mardin 10, the economy of Ottoman Empire did not develop in a way that improve social mobilization of Muslim community. As a result, governing elites acquired new ideas and policies about consumption without being united under a new economic system.

At this point it would be useful to remember Murdock’s argument on the effect of modernity in the cultural field: “ One of defining features of modernity is that formations of discourse and imagery fragment and proliferate creating a complex and contested cultural field. This does not mean that all players on the field are equal. Some enjoy special privileges by virtue of their institutional supports or relative authority of their claims” 11 . In the light of this comment, it is important to discuss the reason lying behind the dominance of the Young Ottomans in cultural field.

They had two advantages. They had attended Western educational institutions and they worked as bureaucrats in significant government offices. It was the power they accrued as state bureaucrats coupled with their first – hand knowledge of Western institutions that enabled the Young Ottomans to become the leading force in the “complex” and “contested” cultural field produced by western modernization. Their centrality was reinforced by the effective role they played in the publishing sphere. This gave them a platform for their public advocacy of ‘progressive’ ideas on a range of issues, from constituonal liberalism to Islamism and critisim of traditional models of marriage.

The active role of the press in the modernization process continued into the Republican era. Indeed, their role was amplified since they were charged with major responsibility for mobilizing popular support behind Atatürk’s revolution and persuading people to accept “total Westernization”. As a consequence, the key tenets of “Westernization” and “being modern” came to constitute their core value framework. Newspapers that stopped using Arabic letters soon after the Revolution had a great impact on the general adoption of new letters 12.

Göle 13 underlines the fact that in the case of Turkish modernization after 1923, “governing elites imposed their own conception of Western culture in an unusual way” and that a transformation was constituted nearly on the “civilizational scale”. Taking his lead from Elias’ work on the civilizing process, he argues that the concept of civilization actually presupposes the priority of the West:

Technology, rules of behaviour, world view and all the other things that differentiate and discriminate the West from more ‘primitive’ societies make Western civilization esteemed in reference to civilization and it is prescribed that the model of culture has universality. 14

According to Göle 15 , that was the reason why Turkish modernists saw the primary goal of reform, of achieving, “the level of contemporary civilization”, as achieving the “level of Western civilization”. This conception of the ‘West’ however is still equated with Europe as it had been from the beginning of the Ottoman Modernization. As we noted earlier however, after World War II Turkish modernization met with the “new West” represented by the United States of America-or as it usually called in Turkey, just “America”.

Ottoman-Turkish Magazines Before the 1950s

A number of women’s and children’s magazines, comics as well as magazine journals and newspaper supplements, were published during the last quarter of the 19th century in the Ottoman Empire. Women and children were also considered “readers” in this period. The weekend supplement of the Terakki newspaper, targeting women as readers, and the special issues of the Vakit newspaper for women were quite popular and influential in Ottoman cultural life of the period. According to Özdemir:

despite being available only for a limited number of people, these supplements and special issues played important roles in a series of developments changing the life of Turkish women radically. To illustrate with, women, who had been confined to their homes for a long time, became “readers” and freed themselves from traditional way of life and behaviors. 16

In addition, these periodicals aimed at helping women improve their skills, knowledge and good manners 17. It is commonly acknowledged that Ottoman magazine journalism dates back to 1874, when the magazine titled Medeniyet was published for the first time. Among the well-known foreign fashion and women’s magazines of the period were Figaro, Femina, Lectures Pours Tous, which covered various topics such as hair/skin care, fashion, clothing, home decoration and women’s health. The magazine Mehasin was launched in 1908 with a publishing policy based on women’s beauty and the consumption of cosmetics. More women’s journals, Kadınlar Dünyası and Kadınlık Duygusu, began to be published between 1912 and 1913 followed by woman journals such as Kadın (1911), İnci (1919) and Süs (1923) whose publishing policies were based on the new consumption patterns 18.

Ahmet Oktay19 (1993) has examined magazine journals of the Turkish Republican Period in three main periods; the first being between 1930 and 1950, the second between 1950-1970 and finally 1970 to present time. The magazine Hayat, which is the particular focus of this present paper, was published during the second period, which Oktay defines as “The Rise of American Life Style”.

In contrast, Oktay 20 argues, the magazine journals published between 1930 and 1950 set out to “educate and enlighten” the public and published news about literature and art. After 1945 however he sees these functions no longer being fulfilled by Turkish magazines. He identifies the main themes covered as: tributes to the regime and the chief; a daily mythos based on praise for the Single Party Regime and Atatürk – the Chef ever- ; modernization and the passion for technology ; an interest in western technology; the popularization of high culture; art and literature news; and recognizing women as “readers”.

Turning to the period between 1950 and 1970 Oktay 21 identifies the main themes of leading magazine journals, including Hafta, Resimli Hayat and Bütün Dünya as: Anti-communism; the rise of sexuality; the tablodisation of high culture; and daily mythologies. He sees the main changes from the earlier period as: encouraging opportunism and entrepreneurship and the replacement of the enlightening and informing function observed in the magazines published between 1950 and 1970 by the function of “entertaining-killing time”, accompanied by the rise of consumerism. Referring to Avcıoğlu , he also argues that magazines published between 1950 and 1970 displayed a clear shift towards “Americanization”, a general trend that had been mentioned in the Thornbourg Report as follows:

Widespread availability of carefully selected American books and magazines will meet an important demand. American novels are useful in terms of reflecting or developing new knowledge and ideas – which is a national characteristic. Although the ideas presented in books and magazines are not considered inappropriate, good ideas in a well-established society always prevail the bad ones. A great number of Turkish intellectuals may also benefit from the content of these magazines 22 .

This quotation suggests that the “rise of Americanization” in the publishing sector was motivated as much by American ‘soft power’ policies and the desire to promote the American way of life abroad as it was by the modernizing push of the Turkish government of that time.

The Rise of ‘Female Sexuality’ in the Magazines of the 1950s

Since the “ rise of sexuality” in magazine journals of 1950s is closely related to the newly emerging concept the “new American Woman”, we will the study will discuss this theme with regards to its iconographic dimension together with the arguments made by Rosenberg 23 . Discussing the “rise of sexuality” in magazine journals published in Turkey between 1950 and 1970 Oktay has pointed to the important role played by cinema as: “Movies played an important role in the change of women’s image. Increasing liberation in eroticism in Turkish and foreign movies was reflected in Turkish media and women discourse was enriched with the inclusion of new dimensions” 24.

In addition, he argues, news taken from American magazines depicting cheating and flirting as normal behaviors was relayed in the Turkish media providing a counterpoint to the traditional discourses around women as mother-wife. Sexuality was used in Turkish magazines more frequently after 1960 and even had pornographic presentation in 1980s. Sancar 25 examined four newspapers published between 1945 and 1965 and found that women were depicted both as an ideal woman, an object of desire, appealing to the “male gaze” and “a good mother and wife”. Appeals to the male gaze centered around representations of Hollywood stars and beauty queens which carried strong connotations of “youth, beautiful body, and sexual attraction”.

Rosenberg 26 has examined representations of women presented through Hollywood stars after World War I, and argues that they operated as icons of “modern” woman and constitute a central dimension of the “American mass culture” and “American Modernism” that spread all over the world following World War II, which Henry R Luce, in a memorable phrase, dubbed the beginning of the “American Century”. However, Rosenberg 27 points out that, even before this, there was a strong tradition in Western and American culture in which representations of women’s roles served as emblematic markers for the degree of “civilization” reached by the society. This pattern was also evident in depictions of the Turkish modernization process. As Kandiyoti 28 notes, in the early years of the Turkish Republic, the modernism of the state was represented through young girls carrying Turkish flags with their school or military uniforms or mini shorts as well as women dancing in ball halls with their modern evening dresses.

Rosenberg 29 however, is at pains to stress that especialy after the First World War, “as modernity increasingly came to mean the spread of systems of mass production and consumerism in the United States, the ‘new woman’ became a preeminent symbol of the ‘new era’”. She describes the the “new woman” image like that:

This “new woman”, however, was hardly a stable signifier. It could be used to mean professional woman who took on mannish characteristics by trying to enter a sphere of public activity; a “flapper” projecting a blatant sexuality; an urban working-class woman with some discretionary money and time; a wife who tried to manage the home according to new “scientific” principles. In most all representations, however, the “new woman” symbolized the expansion of consumption, greater independence, and the power to command relatively unsupervised leisure time 30

In short, after First World War, in the United States, the “new woman”-who was the symbolic marker of American modernity- took her place in the magazines, movies and advertisements through representations of the professional woman in the public sphere; the working-class woman who has newly money and time; the consuming woman; and the woman who openly displays her sexuality. Rosenberg 31, argues that these diverse representations of the “new woman” continued to be the central marker of American modernity after the Second World War- This time however the “new woman” of America represented modernity by promoting kitchen appliances, [Notes 3.] ready-to-wear women’s clothing, cosmetics. At the same time, film stars consolidated their position as “powerful American icons of freedom” and their films and images, which were widely exported outside the United States, became readily accessible symbols of what Americanization looked like and what it promised.

The Images of the Americanization in the Magazine Hayat (1957-1958)

The magazine titled Resimli Hayat (Life Illustrated) changed its name to Hayat (Life) in 1956. Such a change led to some parallel changes in its publishing policy as well; more of a news about Hollywood and American life style took their places in the magazine, insead of Europe-based magazine news. This new trend was furthered by including the magazine news about Turkish elite women, which were accompanied by visual images showing them in decollette clothes. The magazine also published sections about history facts and popular literature. Reaching a circulation rate of 1.000.000 in 1950s and 1960s, the magazine started to lose its popularity in 1970s. This situation was mainly due to the increasing influence of television on daily life and political developments of the period. More importantly, it was now possible to broadcast the printed images on magazines live or taped on TV. The magazine Hayat ended its publication after the strike in the company on July 6th 1979. Although it was later purchased by Star Media Group and continued its publication until late 1980s, it was not as popular and influential as it had been in the past. The owner of the magazine, which was published by Şevket Rado in 1956, was Yapı Kredi Bank – first private bank Turkey that was established in 1944 32 . The Chief Editor was Hikmet Feridun Es, who also wrote travelogues in the magazine.

In 1950s and 1960s, Turkish society was a very dynamic in every field. Rapid urbanization, transition to multi-party democratic system, the rise of political participation, and the influence of 1968 social movements were among the most remarkable dynamics of the period. In addition to this social dynamism, these years were also characterized with the effects of cinema and music industry on social life. Another important phenomenon of the period was the motive of America to extend its culture to all over the world, especially to the allied countries that are geographically closer of Eastern Bloc countries such as Turkey. As a result of these developments, Hayat magazine, which was believed to have a considerable influence on urbanized Turkish society, played an important role in the modernization of Turkish Republic. As mentioned in the previous section, Turkish modernization process involved a remarkable aspire and struggle to adopt westernization from the beginning of 19th Century. Until the 1950s, what had been defined as “West” with its technology, laws, economic and political system, ideas and cultural life was Western Europe. As of 1950s, America – as the new hegemonic power – started to be effective on cultural life, in addition to collaborations with the governments across the world. And it can be said that this effect was realized by the mass communication.

In the current study, it is assumed that Americanization in Turkish popular culture started with Hayat magazine, which changed its name in 1956 by being inspired by the magazine called American Life. The images which shows the Americanization were discussed by choosing the volumes of the years 1957 and 1958 – two years directly after the magazine changed its name in 1956. To do this the volumes of the first and second weeks of the October 1957- November 1957 and September 1957 and the volumes of the second and third weeks of the January 1958- February 1958 and March 1958 were covered. The thematization of the content of the choosen period is like that: Hollywood icons in the covers; Hollywood icons in the advertisements; news about America; news about Hoollywood; female sexuality; ‘new / modern’ Turkish woman- new Turkish elite woman and slim and fashionable woman.

Hollywood icons in the covers

It is observed that in the covers of the volumes of 1957-1958 of the Hayat magazine, the use of the images of the Hollywood icons increased in time. These Hollywood icons are namely: Ava Gardner, Brigitte Bardot, Elizabeth Taylor, Sylvia Lopez, Ingrid Bergman and Susan Hayword. The use of the image of the Turkish singer Necla İz on the cover of the volume February 21, 1958- is evauated the beginning of the Hayat’s publishing policy of the use of the images of the “new Turkish women”. Here are the covers of the Hayat magazine of 1957-1958.

Hayat magazine of 1957-1958.

Hollywod Icons in the Advertisements

It is seen that the images of the Hollywood icons of the time were used in the advertisements of “Lüks Toilet Soap” and the “Havilland Face Powder” that are the cosmetics for the woman beauty. The names of the Hollywood icons are: Gene Tierney, Elizabeth Taylor, Marilyn Monroe, Audrey Hepburn and Brigitte Bardot. In the advertisement texts of the Lüks toilet soap, one of the Hoolywood icon says that: “I use Lüks toilet soap”. In the slogans of the advertisement text, it is said that: “The toilet soap that is preferred by 2120 cinema stars” and “9/10 percentage of cinema stars prefer Lüks toilet soap”. Here some of advertisement texts of the volumes of the Hayat magazine of 1957-1958.

News on America

News on America

News on America are about youth gangs of the 102. Street of Newyork; portable houses of America; the Russian spy in America; “the second White House of America” and the news about futuristic evaluations of the one of important scientist of weapon industry of America. The news on youth gangs of the New York city was represented with the imagaes of the fight of gangs, young’s free love-making in the street and liberated young woman having some how swimming suit. This liberated young woman presented in the written text with this phrase: “the woman who can ‘manage’ (make flirt) six men at the same time easily”.

“The New York City”

October 11, 1957, Vol. 53, pp. 12-13

“The New York City”

 November 1, 1957, Vol. 56, p. 25

“Portable Houses“

The news on “portable the houses” is about the daily life of the American people. “The tremendous Russian Spy is caught”- is the title of the third news on America. The news is about the one of the important Russian spy’s caught. The content of the news is like a propaganda of America aganist the Russia. The one of the schema of the Russian spy network of United States, Canada and Great Britain took place in the news text.

The Russian Spy

December 13, 1957, Vol. 62, pp. 14-15

“The Russian Spy”

February 21, 1958, Vol. 72, pp. 4-5

“The Second White House”

The title of the fourth news on America is: “The Second White House of America”. This news is also propoganda type of news- propaganda of “American democracy” and the President Eisenhower. The news is about Eisenhower’s farm-house and his family life. In the news text it is said that, “The big democracy is executed by Eisenhower” and the news mentions Eisenhower’s regular visits of church on every Sunday. The last news on America is about the one of leading name of American weapon industry and NASA- Werhner von Braun’s [Notes 4.] futuristic comments. The title is “the World of 2058”.

News on Hollywood

The news on Hollywood were in the form of both independent news on Hollywood icons and they are under the title of “Cinema News”. The news on Eurepean Cinema were a very few in the volumes of the 1957-1958-nearly not. It is seen that the huge importance given to the visual images of the icons of the time-mostly famous Hollywood actresses. Namely, they are Elizabeth Taylor, Brigitte Bardot, Ava Gardner, Esther William, Natalie Wood, Sophia Loren, Marilyn Monroe and Audrey Hepburn. The news on Hollywood are mostly about the private life of these icons- their loves, marriages, divorces and flirts. Some news pages of of Hollywood news are below.

22

November 1, 1957, V. 56, p. 21

Heather Sears

23

November 8, 1957, V. 57, pp. 20-21

  Brigidte Bardot

 

24

December 6, 1957, V. 61, pp. 20-21

Cinema News

25

January 10, 1958, V. 66, pp. 20-21

  One Year of the Cinema

26

January 17, 1958, V. 67, pp. 23-24

The Most Orijinal Premier of Hollywood

27

March 7, 1958, V. 74, p. 74

Cinema News

 28  29  30

March 21, 1958, V. 76, pp. 12-13

Young Hollywood Icons and their Old Partners

Female Sexuality

The representations of the ‘female sexuality’ is realized with the use of images of beauty contest-women with decollete dressesses, swimming dresseses and sexy postures; the images of the sexy postures of the Hollywood stars and the images of the “Turkish deputies’ (from the governing party) wifes with decollete dresses. In one of cover image belongs to the Turkish woman singer (February 21, 1958, V. 72) with decollete dress. It is observed that by the year 1958 the images of the Turkish ‘elite’ women began to be appeared in the pages of Hayat.

31

October 1, 1957,

V. 53, p. 4

Beauty Contest in Ankara

32

November 1, 1957,

V. 56, pp. 6-7

World Beauty Contest

33

November 8, 1957

V. 57, p. 6-7

Q. Sureyya and S. Loren

34

December 13, 1957

V. 62, p. 1

Brigitte Bardot

35

February 7, 1958

V. 70, p. 19

The Deputies’ Wifes Turkish Singer with Decolette Dress

36

February 21, 1958

V. 72, p.1

Turkish Singer with Decolette Dress

The “New / Modern” Turkish Woman

a. New Turkish Elite Women

Post War Images of the “new / modern” woman differ significantly from those that dominated the the earlier Republican period. In the context of an ethos that combined, modernisation and nation-building with the maintainance of established gender roles, the ideal nationalist woman was presented as a good wife and mother, bringing up her children and managing family life, but with aspirations to an education that would enable her to make a wider social contribution. The state combined these two expectations by promoting teaching and nursing, occupations that emphasized the traditonal female roles of educating children and nurturing, as the ideal jobs for modern women of the early Republic. Kandiyoti 33 also underlines the point that the women depicted in these roles wore the “woman suit” [Notes 5.] which conceals and controls female sexuality. There was however one notable exception to this cancellation of feminity. At the “Republican Balls”, where the establishment of the Republic was celebrated, women were shown in formal western style evening dresses with bare shoudler, the long-established style of the western monarchies and aristocracies. Atatürk’s dancing waltz with “modern Turkish women” had been the well symbol of the Turkish Modernization.

38

February 21, 1958, V. 72, p. 13

Modern’ Turkish Women at the Premier of a Movie

39

March 21, 1958, V. 76, p. 3

The Masons’ Ball

In marked contrast, the issues of Hayat for 1958 depict a version of modernization that is strongly inflected by americanised images of conspicuous consumption and leisure. Images of “new Turkish elite women” show them relaxing in the lobbies of luxury hotels, attending fashion shows, wearing expensive outfits, fur coats, and decollette dresses, and smoking cigarettes. Smoking was a particularly potent symbol of female liberation from traditional expectations. As it is known that, after World War I, Edward Bernays, who had worked on the Amerian propaganda effort, was hired to promote smoking for women. Men in the battle zones had been given free cigarettes to calm their nerves before combat and many returned to civilain life strongly addicted. But smoking continued to be seen as a masculine trait and rates among women remained low. To counter this percpetion, Bernays hired glamorous women to march in a parade of suffragettes demanding votes for women and at a given signal to pull out cigarettes, light them, and hold up placards with the slogan ‘Torches of freedom’. This brilliant publicity coup forged an enduring association between smoking and personal liberation for women.

39

January 10, 1958, V. 66, pp. 28-29

Modern’ Turkish Women at Fashion Show

40

January 10, 1958, V. 66, pp. 28-29

New Year Ball at Hilton Hotel

The images in Hayat also show women becoming increasingly confident in using their bodies as a vehicle for self expression, often in ways that carried a sexual undertext, such as dancing to the rumba, mambo, samba, or rock’ın roll at parties in the luxury hotels and participating the “New Year Party” insead of “Republican Balls”. Summing up we can say that these images of the new women combine a new emphasis on consumption and the liberation of women’s bodies from traditional constraints, with greater freedom of action and expression within the public sphere.

b. Slim and Fashionable Woman

This categorization of the images are belong to the Western models of fashion industry-who are very slim and fashionable. As it is known that classical Turkish woman was not / is not slim. But the being slimness had been the well symbol of fashion industry. Rosenberg 34 underlines that the new / modern American woman in the magazines, motion pictures and advertisements were represented by being slimness, especially after the World War I. So being “slim and fashionable” is the marker of Americanization or not is debatable. And I need additional knowledge on this issue.

41

November 1, 1957, V. 56, pp. 26-27

Modern Slim and Fashionable Woman

42

January 10, 1958, V. 66, pp. 14-1

Modern Slim and Fashionable Woman

Conclusion:

During the Turkey’s modernization process launched under the Ottomans and continued under the Republican times, it is clear that, modernization means that “westernization”. In addition to the effect of westernization on economic, political and social life, the effect of westernization on cultural life was so clear cut-nearly civilization scale. Up to the 1950s, where the USA became world power, the inspration of Turkish modernization was rooted from Europe and Eurepean values. After the World War II, together with the American soft power policies, the cultural life in Turkey began to be effected by “Americanization”.

In this study, the passing from the Eurepean images to the American images in the issues of the Turkish magazine Hayat, two years after the change of its name in 1956, with the inspiration of the American magazine Life was the main problematic. Following the model of American magazine Life, Turkish magazine Hayat was organized around visual images about the news on America, news on Hollywood stars and their life styles, news on beauty contests and fashion shows where women openly display their sexuality. By the year 1958, news on what I called “new Turkish elite women” were appeared among these visual images with their liberated bodies- dancing at the parties, seen in the fashion shows, relaxing in the lobies of luxury hotels, smoking cigarettes at the activities by wearing decolette dresses.

The emergence of the these images was interpreted as “Americanization” with applying Rosenberg’s 35 study on “Consuming Women: Images of Americanization in the ‘American Century’”. The “new American woman” was the well symbol of the American modernization, have the specifities of giving emphasis to consumption and being confident in using their bodies as vehicle for self expression, often in ways that carried sexual undertext.

In this study the small part of passing to Americanization in the popular culture was discussed by applying to the visual images of the Turkish magazine of 1950’s Hayat. There is necessity of enlarging of this study by covering the issues between 1958-1968, which was the most influential era of the magazine Hayat. And passing towards the Americanization of the popular culture, can be studied by applying the coverage of the popular newspapers of the time.

[Notes 1.] Özdemir ( 2007: 15) by giving reference to the Çıkla (2004: 92-93) implements that, journals of the famous stores of Mapple in London and Lafoyette of Paris, advertisement catalogs and the publications of the imported products, effected the Ottoman urban life style. According to Özdemir (2007: 15), the dresses, furnitures or cosmetics choosen from these catalogs brought the new identity and new life imaginations.

[Notes 2.] See Kandiyoti’s, Acar’s and Sancar’s studies on gender role and Turkish modernization. Deniz Kandiyoti (1998), “Modernin Cinsiyeti: Türk Modernleşmesi Araştırmalarında Eksik Kalan Boyutlar, Türkiye’de Modernleşme ve Ulusal Kimlik . Ed., Sibel Bozdoğan-Reşat Kasaba .İstanbul: Tarih Vakfı Yurt Yayınları, pp.99-117; Yeşim Acar (1998). “Türkiye’de Modernleşme Projesi ve Kadınlar”, Türkiye’de Modernleşme ve Ulusal Kimlik. Ed., Sibel Bozdoğan-Reşat Kasaba . İstanbul: Tarih Vakfı Yurt Yayınları, pp. 82-98; Serpil Sancar (2012). Türk Modernleşmesinin Cinsiyeti, İstanbul: İletişim.

[Notes 3.] Rosenberg (1999: 487) wrote the brief of the famous “kitchen debate” took place between the Vice President Richard nixon ans Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev at the American National Exhibition at Sokoliniki Park in Moscow in 1959. “The two superpower leaders formulated their respective countries’ claims to progress and goodness in representations about women’s lives. They engaged in our-women-are-better-off-than-your-women-no-they-aren’t-yes-they-are- kind of masculine display”.

[Notes 4.] He was the highest authority in the German Rocket Industry in 1940 and he was the member of Nationalist socialist Party at that time. After the World War II, he escaped to US. Werhner von Braun is the person who made the Saturn V that sent to moon with person inside it. In 1970 he was the chair of the planning department of NASA.

[Notes 5.] “Woman suit” had been the well symbol of the working women from the early Republican times to today in Turkey.

[Notes 6.] Thank you so much my MA student Mehmet Emir Yıldız for taking of the photographs of the Turkish magazine Hayat.

Bibliography

Acar, Y. (1998). “Türkiye’de Modernleşme Projesi ve Kadınlar”, Türkiye’de Modernleşme ve Ulusal Kimlik. Ed., Sibel Bozdoğan-Reşat Kasaba. İstanbul: Tarih Vakfı Yurt Yayınları, 82-98.

Avcıoğlu, D. (1968). Türkiye’nin Düzeni, İstanbul: Bilgi.

Çıkla, S. (2004). Roman ve Gerçeklik Bağlamında Kültür Değişmeleri ve Servet-i Fünun Romanı, Ankara: Akçağ.

Dağtaş, B. (2005). “News Coverage of the Copenhagen Summit in the Turkish Press”, Mass Media and International Issues. Ed. Alexandros Arampatsis & Yorgo Passadeos. Athens: Atiner, 19-39.

Göle, N. (1998). “Modernleşme Bağlamında İslami Kimlik Arayışı”, Türkiye’de Modernleşme ve Ulusal Kimlik. Ed., Sibel Bozdoğan-Reşat Kasaba .İstanbul: Tarih Vakfı Yurt Yayınları, 70-82.

Kandiyoti, D. (1998). “Modernin Cinsiyeti: Türk Modernleşmesi Araştırmalarında Eksik Kalan Boyutlar, Türkiye’de Modernleşme ve Ulusal Kimlik. Ed., Sibel Bozdoğan-Reşat Kasaba. İstanbul: Tarih Vakfı Yurt Yayınları, 99-117.

Keyder, Ç. (1998). “1990’larda Türkiye Modernleşmesinin Doğrultusu”, Türkiye’de Modernleşme ve Ulusal Kimlik. Ed., Sibel Bozdoğan-Reşat Kasaba. İstanbul: Tarih Vakfı Yurt Yayınları, 29-43.

Koloğlu, O. (1992). Osmanlı’dan Günümüze Türkiye’de Basın. İstanbul: İletişim.

Mardin, Ş. (2003).Tanzimat’tan Sonra Aşırı Batılılaşma”. Türk Modernleşmesi Makaleler 4. İstanbul: İletişim.

Murdock, G. (1993). “Communications and the Constitution of Modernity”. Media, Culture and Society, 15, 521-539.

Oktay, A. (1993). Türkiye’de Popüler Kültür. İstanbul: Yapı Kredi.

Ortaylı, İ. (2006) (25th edition). İmparatorluğun En Uzun Yüzyılı. İstanbul: Alkım.

Özdemir, N. (2007). Osmanlı Tüketim Kültürü, Eğlence ve Yazılı Medya İlişkisi. Milli Folklor, 73, 12-22.

Rosenberg, E. S. (1999). “Consuming Women: Images of Americanization in the ‘American Century’”. Diplomatic History, 23 (3), 479-497.

Sancar, S. (2012). Türk Modernleşmesinin Cinsiyeti. İstanbul: İletişim.

Tanpınar, A. H. (2010) (8nd edition): XIX. Asır Türk Edebiyat Tarihi. İstanbul: YKY.

Wikipedia (2014). http://tr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hayat_(dergi). 27. 08. 2014.

1Dağtaş, B. (2005). “News Coverage of the Copenhagen Summit in the Turkish Press”, Mass Media and International Issues. Ed. Alexandros Arampatsis & Yorgo Passadeos. Athens: Atiner, p. 19.

2Keyder, Ç. (1998). “1990’larda Türkiye Modernleşmesinin Doğrultusu”. Türkiye’de Modernleşme ve Ulusal Kimlik. Ed., Sibel Bozdoğan-Reşat Kasaba. İstanbul: Tarih Vakfı Yurt Yayınları, p. 129.

3Koloğlu, O. (1992). Osmanlı’dan Günümüze Türkiye’de Basın, İstanbul: İletişim, pp. 17-18.

4Koloğlu, p. 26.

5 Özdemir, N. (2007). “Osmanlı Tüketim Kültürü, Eğlence ve Yazılı Medya İlişkisi”. Milli Folklor, 73, p. 18.

6 Özdemir, pp. 20-21.

7 Tanpınar, A. H. (2010) (8nd edition). XIX. Asır Türk Edebiyat Tarihi, İstanbul: YKY, p. 151.

8 Ortaylı, İ. (2006) (25th edition). İmparatorluğun En Uzun Yüzyılı. İstanbul: Alkım, p. 237.

9 Mardin, Ş. (2003).Tanzimat’tan Sonra Aşırı Batılılaşma”, Türk Modernleşmesi Makaleler 4. İstanbul: İletişim, p. 28.

10 Mardin, p. 27.

11 Murdock, G. (1993). “Communications and the Constitution of Modernity”, Media, Culture and Society, 15, p. 526.

12 Dağtaş, p. 22.

13 Göle, N. (1998). “Modernleşme Bağlamında İslami Kimlik Arayışı”, Türkiye’de Modernleşme

14 Göle, p. 73.

15 Göle, p. 73.

16 Özdemir, p. 15.

17 Özdemir ( 2007: 15) by giving reference to the Çıkla (2004: 92-93) implements that, journals of the famous stores of Mapple in London and Lafoyette of Paris, advertisement catalogs and the publications of the imported products, effected the Ottoman urban life style. According to Özdemir (2007: 15), the dresses, furnitures or cosmetics choosen from these catalogs brought the new identity and new life imaginations.

18 See Kandiyoti’s, Acar’s and Sancar’s studies on gender role and Turkish modernization. Deniz Kandiyoti (1998), “Modernin Cinsiyeti: Türk Modernleşmesi Araştırmalarında Eksik Kalan Boyutlar, Türkiye’de Modernleşme ve Ulusal Kimlik . Ed., Sibel Bozdoğan-Reşat Kasaba .İstanbul: Tarih Vakfı Yurt Yayınları, pp.99-117; Yeşim Acar (1998). “Türkiye’de Modernleşme Projesi ve Kadınlar”, Türkiye’de Modernleşme ve Ulusal Kimlik. Ed., Sibel Bozdoğan-Reşat Kasaba . İstanbul: Tarih Vakfı Yurt Yayınları, pp. 82-98; Serpil Sancar (2012). Türk Modernleşmesinin Cinsiyeti, İstanbul: İletişim.

19 Bibliography

20 Acar, Y. (1998). “Türkiye’de Modernleşme Projesi ve Kadınlar”, Türkiye’de Modernleşme ve Ulusal Kimlik. Ed., Sibel Bozdoğan-Reşat Kasaba. İstanbul: Tarih Vakfı Yurt Yayınları, 82-98.

21 Oktay, A. (1993). Türkiye’de Popüler Kültür. İstanbul: Yapı Kredi.

22 Avcıoğlu, D. (1968). Türkiye’nin Düzeni, İstanbul: Bilgi.

23 Rosenberg, Emily S. (1999). “Consuming Women: Images of Americanization in the ‘American Century’”. Diplomatic History, 23 (3), pp. 479-497.

24 Oktay, p. 187.

25 Sancar, p. 238-240.

26 Rosenberg.

27 Rosenberg, p. 480.

28 Kandiyoti, Deniz (1998). “Modernin Cinsiyeti: Türk Modernleşmesi Araştırmalarında Eksik Kalan Boyutlar”, Türkiye’de Modernleşme ve Ulusal Kimlik. Ed., Sibel Bozdoğan-

Reşat Kasaba . İstanbul: Tarih Vakfı Yurt Yayınları, p. 112.

29 Rosenberg, p. 481.

30 Rosenberg, p. 481.

31 Rosenberg, p. 487-497.

32 Wikipedia (2014). http://tr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hayat_(dergi). Retrieved on 27. 08. 2014.

33 Kandiyoti, pp. 113-114.

34 Rosenberg, p. 482.

35 Rosenberg.

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