From the President
Great Atatürk, while we are celebrating the seventy-fifth anniversary of the establishment of the Republic, we the Bilkent community reiterate our profound gratitude to you for giving us the blessings of democracy and freedom. We pledge to preserve and protect the principles upon which the Republic was established.
The "Republic of Culture"
"New Turkey" was created by Mustafa Kemal Atatürk as a "Republic of Culture." It drew inspiration from his quintessential statement that "Culture is the foundation of the Turkish Republic." In launching its idealpolitic, the Turkish Enlightenment -- especially in the Republic's first 15 years -- served as the intellectual substance, the galvanizing spirit, and the rational strategy for the encompassing transformation in law and political institutions, social and economic dynamics. It recognized the inherent power of the cultural synthesis the that the Turkish nation had fostered in the past fifteen centuries -- Central Asian, Islamic, Anatolian, Ottoman elite, and folk creative arts, westernization -- and enriched it with a brave new program of modernization in science, higher learning, scholarship, mass education, fine arts, architecture, music, theatre, opera, ballet, cinema, and a new vigorous language.
Also in this issue:
From the Rector
In this time of joy and celebration, looking back we see what an immense accomplishment the Republic has been. Looking forward, we see our responsibilities and the challenges we face. We are confident that we shall meet the challenges and hope that future generations, in later celebrations like this, will approve of the course we have followed. With these thoughts in mind, I wish you all a happy and joyful week.
A Brief History of the Republic
The Republic of Turkey has gone through three major periods since its inception. The first period involved the War of Independence, under the command of Atatürk, and the foundation of a new nation-state based on national will by a National Assembly. The two very significant events during the foundation of a new Turkish state were the declaration of the Republic and the abolition of the Caliphate. As the Caliphate was abolished the principle that political authority originates not from divine orders, but from the people's will was established. This basic principle of the Republic can never be changed. Any attempt to change it will mean the end of the Republic of Turkey.
Republic Holiday Vacation Extended!
In honor of the seventy-fifth anniversary of the Republic, Friday, October 30, has been declared an extra day of vacation in addition to the one-and-half day official observance. Accordingly, Bilkent News will not appear on the stands Monday, November 2. We will return Monday, November 9.
Happy holiday to all!