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Turkey and Social


Legitimacy is one of the main concepts of social science which mean the
right and the acceptance of an authority this acceptance by the governed is
what give the government the power to exercise it is constituted of two
sources: the first is the divine right of kings which has dominated the middle
age. The second is the social contract theory, mainly belongs to modern
philosophers. Different political systems has needed to justify themselves
according to one of these source criteria, because all the political system
need to being acceptable by their citizens. The aim of this study is
examination of different types of legitimacy and appearing the third type of
enhancing legitimacy in case of Turkey. The results of examining turkey
model showed that by enhancing the economic development the political
system has seen more justified and its legitimacy consolidated.
As we mentioned before legitimacy mean the acceptance of people that their
leader has the power and the authority to govern them the question here
arise from if people are those who get the leader to the position he is in
right now which mean they are stronger than him so what make them after
all that obey him and follow his vision the answer of this question was given
by max weber who introduced an explanation of legitimate authorities he
said that this authority get its power from one of three sources first is
traditional authority on which it have its bases from long historical customs

or legal authority which is based on rational procedures

ad charismatic

authority which is based on skills and abilities of the leader himself (Bendix ,
Brian assumed that legitimacy is derived from two sources Divine Right of
Kings which state that king is accountable to god alone and heredity right is
indefeasible and monarchy is divinely ordinated institution was dominated
legitimacy during middle age.

And another source of legitimacy is social

contract (brian , 1996)

According to Thomas hobbes that natural state proceed to civil state and
then constitute the civil society in explaining this hobbes said that in the
natural state it is characterized by war of all against all at this moment of
was people all agree to come out of this disorder and collect together and
form civil society (hobbes , 1994)
John Locke give a democratic concept of legitimacy by stating in the state of
nature all people have equal rights and all of them are equally free
considering the state of nature as the state of peace (Locke 1998)
Rawl characterized locke approach as this state of nature as the state of
equal right and conclude that social contract theory facilitate the growth of
liberalism where everyone is free and equally in all right this concept then
refuse the theory of divine right of kings (Rawl , 2007)
Khaled Sheykholeslami found that there is another source for legitimacy rather than
social contract or the divine right of kind which is economic growth which is

applicable on the case of Turkey in the period between 2002 to 2011 where
economic growth was a reason that people follow the AKP which is the abbreviation
for Justice and development political party that is leaded by Ragab Taib Erdoghan
(Khaled , 2015)
The Case of Turkey
During its established, since 1923, Turkey has faced many riots and crisis. Its
political system has been challenging by different sources of cleavages like
secularism and Islamism. Moreover coups by army were the best sign of crisis of
legitimacy in Turkey which often resulted in cancelling the normal political
In 1970 turkey face anarchy and terrorism beside its political and economic problem
which lead the military to intervene in the political life to save democracy and the
republic and liberalism that is formed by Ataturk in this phase it apply what hobbes
have said about the state of nature a war of all against all
And this state continue for about 30 years (Ismail , 2011)
After that people begin to gather which can be translated in the condition of a new
political party called Justice and development party gave the opportunity to AKP
holding 363 seat out of 550 with the nearly 35% of votes in 2002, whereas the main
opposition party had the rest with nearly 20% which means nearly %45 of voters
could not be represented in the parliament. In 2007 AKP increased its votes to about
47% with more promises on democratization and its votes hit almost 50% of voters
in the last elections held this year with the good news of a constitution that is to be
prepared in an ordinary time and civil politicians.

Since 2001 AKP mainly target is to increase the economic growth of turkey which
result in overcoming the economic crisis that the country was facing which make
the inflation decline by time and as the inflation decline and the economic growth
increase the number of voters for AKP increase the following table would give a
summary for this economic growth and its relation with Voting for AKP

Election history

Leader of Party

Number of Votes


According to this study we can say that the political system of turkey in the period
between 1960 to 2011 can be translated through the social contract theory of
Thomas hobbes in that peole go from the state of nature which is characterized by
war of all against all and proceed to the civil state and in the case of turkey it face

violence terrorism and military intervention till people gathered and form

together the social contract giving the legitimacy to justice and development

political party who is leaded by Erdogan who has been elected no as a president of

1.Bendix Reinhart (1977), Max Weber: an Intellectual Portrait, California University
2.Skyms Brian (1996), Evolution of the Social Contract, Camberidge University
3.Hobbes Thomas (1994), Leviathan,Hacket Company, Indian Polis.
4.Locke John (1998), Second Treatise of Government, Hacket Company, Indian Polis.
5.Rawls John ( 2007), Lectures on the History of Political Philosophy, Harvard
University Press.

6.Ozan Cigizoglu (2013). Demystifying the Turkish economic success under AKP
government, p: 5. 10. John Neville Figgis, the divine right of kings. Cambridge
university press.2010.
7. Khaled Sheykholeslami (2015) , legitimacy and different political system Georg
Natl. Acad. Sci. vol. 9, no. 2, 2015