Expelled academics teach in streets of Ankara

Expelled academics teach in streets of Ankara

Rifat Başaran - ANKARA
Expelled academics teach in streets of Ankara A number of academics who were expelled or suspended from their duties under Turkey’s state of emergency have continued to offer courses in the streets of Ankara as part of an alternative way to reach students and youth. 

Some academics in Ankara have begun giving courses in parks or streets in Ankara under the auspices of “Street Academy” or “Ankara Solidarity Academy.” Academics who have given courses in Ankara’s well-known Kuğulu Park have said they will continue to give courses in different areas of Ankara.

Other academics who gave an eighth course in Anıtpark said they were aiming to reach people.

Süreyya Karacabey, who was expelled from the Faculty of Language, History and Geography under Ankara University, said they were attempting to ensure classes are not prevented from being held and to impart knowledge in a horizontal and democratic fashion. “[We have] carried academia to the middle of life” in contrast to the people who seek to eject life and science from campuses, the scholar said.

Karacabey, who was expelled from her position by a decree law on Jan. 6, said they were aiming to introduce different socioeconomic classes to each other.

“We started to give courses by going to places where people live. So we started to make them in parks. We had the intention of reaching people who were living or passing by there. Our main social problem is that we do not recognize each other. If we recognize each other, we will love each other. We are living in a society which has become polarized,” she said.  
In the most recent crackdown, a total of 330 academics, many of them from Ankara University, were expelled with a state of emergency decree published in the Official Gazette on Feb. 7, drawing criticism from the opposition and the scholars themselves about the effect the moves will have on education.