Remembering the first movie theaters and early cinema exhibition in Quay, Smyrna, Turkey

Authored by: Dilek Kaya

The Routledge Companion to New Cinema History

Print publication date:  February  2019
Online publication date:  February  2019

Print ISBN: 9781138955844
eBook ISBN: 9781315666051
Adobe ISBN:


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Defeated on many fronts in the First World War, the Ottoman Empire capitulated and signed a peace agreement with the Allied Powers on 30 October 1918. Marking the end of the Empire, the armistice opened up large tracts of Ottoman territories to the Allied occupation. A Turkish national resistance movement soon developed. Following the War of Independence (1919–1922), the abolition of the sultanate (1922), and the Treaty of Lausanne (24 July 1923), which gave Turkey full independence, the New Republic of Turkey was proclaimed on 29 October 1923, with Mustafa Kemal (Atatürk) as its first president. Aspiring to the creation of a new Turkish identity as well as a modernized, westernized nation-state, the republican government undertook many reforms that distanced the country from its Ottoman, Islamic and Eastern heritage, both administratively and ideologically. Moreover, as a coherent national identity would require as much forgetting as remembering, some reforms were also meant to foster a new national memory, among them the replacement of Arabic script by the Latin alphabet in 1928, which rendered all texts in Ottoman Turkish (written in Arabic letters) indecipherable to coming generations.

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