Silencing the Present: Student-Soldiers and Officer-Teachers Meet in the Classroom

  • Ayse Gül Altinay


An analysis of the high school military course solely based on its textbooks and teachers would be incomplete. To rephrase what Catherine Lutz and Jane Collins (1993, 217) have said about the magazine National Geographic, there would have been no military course without the millions of students who have taken it. Since Janice Radway’s (1984) paradigm-shifting ethnographic work on readers of romance novels in the United States, the issue of “reception” has been central in studies of cultural forms, products, and processes. The “tradition of the docile and imagined” audience (Lutz and Collins 1993, 218) has been replaced with an interest in the agency of the consumers of popular culture in interpreting cultural products in their own way. In this view, readers/viewers/consumers are not assumed to be passive recipients of the meanings intended by the producers of cultural texts, but they attach their own meaning to them. The question of whether possible meanings of a particular cultural form are infinite or whether they are limited by certain dominant themes constitutes a central concern of many cultural studies scholars today.


Prime Minister National Security Strategic Analysis General Staff History Textbook 
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© Ayse Gül Altinay 2004

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  • Ayse Gül Altinay

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