Case Study: Gezi Park

Friday September 12, 2014

Role Playing Exercise

  • Each student will have a representative role.
  • You will study the impact of Gezi controversy, and ensuing protests, on life from the perspective of that person, based on an online survey of write-ups and articles.
  • Events have happened already.
  • You will focus on what will happen.
  • The problem is what should be done with Gezi: How shall “this role” solve it?
  • Challenge: Eliminate all your personal subjectivity and take on a different perspective

Time Frame:

12:10 – 12:40 Research online about these roles. Figure out what your role would want to happen in the near future. Take notes on your personal copies of maps.

12:40 – 13:15 Moderator-guided debate using the map of Gezi on what should be done with Gezi.

13:15 – 13:25 General assessment of the exercise


1.     Government representative: Roles of Prime Minister Erdogan, President Gul, construction company which was planning to build the mall on Gezi Park

‘Patience has its limits,’ Turkish PM Erdoğan tells Taksim Gezi Park demonstrators

Turkish PM Erdoğan slams Gezi Park protesters again

Turkish PM says government analyzes Gezi Park protests

Museum instead of mall, hotel or residences at Gezi Park, says Istanbul mayor

2.     Government-sided media

Poll says the the purpose of Gezi protests was to spread chaos

Merchants tell Gezi Park protestors enough is enough

Damages from Taksim protests exceed 100 millon liras

3.     Government-opposing media

Demonstrators plant trees against destruction in Gezi Park

Turkey fines TV stations for protest coverage

Penguins not protests on Turkish TV fuel anger

Why Turkey’s mainstream media chose to show penguins rather than protests

A graphic history of Gezi protests

4.     Journalists: Journalists who are fired from their jobs for reporting on the events; journalists who are harassed by the protestors for not reporting on the events while trying to report

Turkish journalists hit street to denounce police brutality during Gezi protests

Can Dündar dismissed from daily Milliyet for critical Gezi stance

You are covering a resistance event in order to inform the society? You are fired!

Turkey: Gezi Park Coverage Costing Journalists Their Jobs

Why Turkey’s mainstream media chose to show penguins rather than protests

Turkey: 72 Journalists Forced Out for Covering Protests, Union Says

Charges Against Journalists Dim the Democratic Glow in Turkey

The Media in Turkey

5.     Intellectuals (e.g. History Foundation; Orhan Pamuk)

Gezi Park Protests Resonate in Turkish Academe

Memories of a Public Square    square.html

6.     Students

Occupy Gezi: A Student Speaks Out

Interview #4: Protest In Gezi Park, Turkey

7.     Artists

Bedri Baykam:

Istanbul Biennial Protests Foreshadowed Battle for Gezi Park

The Failure of a Project: Gezi Park and more

Beyoğlu Talks hosts photography legend Ara Güler guler.html

Solidarity Park Poetry

Istanbul’s Troubled Gardens: Yedikule’s Lettuce

8.     Tech savvy youth, the “millennials,” who occupied the park. According to a fieldwork-based survey conducted with 3,000 individuals who participated in the protests in the first weeks, conducted by Bilgi University social scientists, 40% of participants were between the ages of 19-25.

Millennials in Turkey: Generation Gezi?

RedHack ‘hacks’ Turkish police website as border traffic grounds to a halt

9. Individuals who physically participated in Gezi Protests; those who identify as e.g., socialist, atheist, anarchist, muslim, Kemalist, communist, nationalist, Istanbulite, apolitical

Protests should continue in a festive mood: BDP’s Gezi Park resister Önder

Protesting Kurds finding solidarity in Gezi

Gezi Park Protests

Gezi Park: Turkey’s new opposition movement

10.     The ones who are supporting from home; parents and families of the “millennials”; pots and pans’ protests

The Mothers of the Protesters Form Human Chain Around Gezi Park, Taksim

Delinquent Kids, Revolutionary Mothers, Uncle Governor, and Erdogan the Patriarch (Part One)

11. Architects who are against any architectural intervention on Gezi (See signature campaign); architects who believe it should be re-designed.

Gezi Park Monument by Studio Vural

Preserve Taksim Gezi Park As A Modern Civic Landmark And Monument

When Urban Planning Gets Political: The History of Taksim Square

Istanbul’s Awful Plans  

12. Professional organizations, the chamber of Turkish architects, and chamber of city planning

Architects See ‘Witch Hunt’ by Turkish Government

Midnight law targets architect group at center of Gezi protests

“You Can’t Even Hammer A Nail in Gezi Park”

13. Political Activists: Kurdish, Nationalists, LGBT, Antikapitalist Muslumanlar

“Come, Come, Whoever You Are.” As a Pluralist Movement Emerges from Gezi Park in Turkey

PKK’s urban wing vows to support ‘democratic protests’

LGBT Organizations In Turkey Participate (AND Are Accepted) In Gezi Park Protests

Anti-Capitalist Muslim leader says Gezi youth want new approach to Islam

14. Local residents (home and business): individuals effected by the construction and gassing

Reporter’s Notebook: Tear-gas grenades in Istanbul

15. Police 

Redhack to be tried as a virtual terrorist organization

Istanbul Gezi Park plan to proceed Turkish PM Erdogan

Turkish PM hints visit to Gezi Park ‘sometime soon,’ slams outlawed groups

16. Individuals who are only informed by government sided media: they may be pious or secular, poor or middle class, conservative or liberal.

The Gezi protests have shown the rampant institutional bias in Turkey’s media which now leaves little room for facts.


The links have been compiled by Ayca Koseoglu and Andrew Brown.



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