Remzi Çağatay Çakırlar (Leiden University)
My Ph.D. project entitled The French Radical Party and the Making of Kemalism (1901-1939) is the continuation of my MA thesis Edouard Herriot: An Intellectual, Republican, and Radical-Socialist between France and Turkey (1908-1938). Both projects have been supervised at Leiden University by Prof. Erik-Jan Zürcher (Leiden) and Prof. Nathalie Clayer (EHESS-Paris).
The Netherlands Institute in Turkey (NIT) offered me the unique opportunity to pursuit my research and consult a remarkable amount of primary sources that are paramount for the realization of my project. In fact, there I had the chance to conduct a large scale literature review on the newspapers published at late Ottoman and early Republican period. The principal newspapers among the sources which I referred, I should mention; Minber, Sabah, Tevhid, İkdam, Vatan, Vakit, Son Telgraf, Cumhuriyet, Hâkimiyet-i Milliye, Son Posta, Milliyet, Tan, and Ulus in addition to various other publications in Ottoman Turkish, Modern Turkish, and French.
Due to archival and library research, I often travel and have to arrange accommodation in every city I visit. Unlike other places, in Istanbul, not only I had a quite pleasant stay, but I could also embark on my research the day I moved into NIT thanks to the Institute’s practicality and its central location in İstiklâl Caddesi. Moreover, as a research fellow, I was allowed to access the NIT’s library 24/7, and to have my accommodation with all facilities only few steps away from the study area. Finally, I am indebted to institute’s head Dr. Fokke Gerritsen and Assistant Güher Gürmen, as well as NIT librarians and staff for their enjoyable hospitality in the institute. Thanks to them, I now have new friends and their positive approach already marked NIT among my favorite places to visit in Beyoğlu.