Mustafa Kemal:

Topics: Turkey, Istanbul, Turkish language Pages: 6 (1697 words) Published: April 25, 2012
Mustafa Kemal:

Muslim Modernity

Mustafa Kemal (March 12, 1881 - November 10, 1938), was a Turkish nationalist and political leader who was instrumental in the fall of the Ottoman sultanate and in the creation of modern Turkey, was also the founder and first President of the Republic of Turkey. Kemal devoted his life to freeing Turkey from foreign domination. Under his benevolent dictatorship as president of the republic, he instituted lasting reforms that earned him the name Atatürk (the father of the Turks). Kemal was born in Salonika (now Greece, but then part of Turkish Macedonia), the son of a lower middle class Turkish customs official. Ali Riza (Efendi) died when Kemal was a child; his mother was Zübeyde (Hanim).

Kemal became known as an extremely capable military officer by being the only undefeated Ottoman commander during World War I. Following the defeat of the Ottoman Empire; he led the Turkish national movement in the Turkish War of Independence. Having established a provisional government, he defeated the forces sent by the Allies. His successful military campaigns led to the liberation of the country and to the establishment of Turkey. During his presidency, Kemal embarked upon a program of political, economic, and cultural reforms. An admirer of the Age of Enlightenment, he sought to transform the former Ottoman Empire into a modern, democratic, and secular nation-state. The principles of Atatürk's reforms, upon which modern Turkey was established

Leaders from the beginning of time have put policies or laws into place that they felt were beneficial. Some leaders leave a legacy of dramatic change and others do not. Kemal was a leader known for change, and his reforms such as the changes to education, more rights for women and the modernization of the economy were ground breaking and made him a hero too many.

The National Assembly, which first convened on 23 April 1920, that was the first clue to the Turkish Republic. The successful management of the War of Independence by this assembly accelerated the founding of the new Turkish State. On the 1 of November 1922, the offices of the Sultan and caliph were severed from one other and the former was abolished. There were no longer any administrative ties with the Ottoman Empire. On the 29 of October 1923, Turkish Republic was formally proclaimed and Kemal was unanimously elected as its first President. On 30 October 1923, the first government of the Republic was formed. The Republic started to grow on the foundations of the twin principles "Sovereignty, unconditionally belongs to the nation" and "peace at home, peace in the world,"

Kemal undertook a series of reforms to "raise Turkey to the level of modern civilization" which can be grouped under five titles

1. Political Reforms

* Abolishment of the office of the Sultan (November 1922)
* Proclamation of the Republic (29 October 1923)
* Abolishment of the caliph (3 March 1924)

2. Social Reforms

* Recognition of equal rights to men and women (1926 - 1934) * Reform of Headgear and Dress (25 November 1925)
* Closure of mausoleums and dervish lodges (30 November 1925) * Law on family names (21 June 1934)
* Abolishment of titles and by-names (26 November 1934)
* Adoption of international calendar, hours and measurements (1925 - 1931)

3. Legal Reforms

* Abolishment of the Canon Law (1924 - 1937)
* Transfer to a secular law structure by adoption of Turkish Civil Code and other laws (1924 - 1937)

4. Reforms in the fields of education and culture

* Unification of education (3 March 1924)
* Adoption of new Turkish alphabet (1 November 1928)
* Establishment of Turkish Language and History Institutions (1931 - 1932) * Regulation of the university education (31 May 1933)
* Innovations in fine arts

5. Economic Reforms

* Abolition of tithe
* Encouragement of the farmers
* Establishment of model farms
* Establishment of industrial...
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