Rifat Bali to Speak at NAASR on Jewish Experience in Modern Turkey

BELMONT, Mass.—On Thurs., Oct. 17, Rifat Bali, the author of Model Citizens of The State: The Jews of Turkey during the Multi-Party Period (Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 2012), will give a lecture titled “Forced Turkification, Anti-Semitism, and Lobbying against Recognition of the Armenian Genocide,” at the National Association for Armenian Studies and Research (NAASR) Center in Belmont. The lecture will be co-sponsored by the Zoryan Institute for Contemporary Armenian Research and Documentation and NAASR.

The cover of 'Model Citizens of the State'
The cover of ‘Model Citizens of the State’


Using archival material and first-hand accounts, Model Citizens of the State exposes the treatment of the Jewish community in Turkey from 1950 to present, the struggle of Turkish Jews for their constitutional rights, their fight against anti-Semitism, and the indifferent attitude of the Turkish establishment to these problems, and illustrates how the Turkish establishment coerced the leaders of the Jewish community—and through them Jewish organizations in the United States—to thwart efforts to gain recognition of the Armenian Genocide.

Rifat N. Bali is an independent scholar specializing in the history of Turkish Jews and is an associate member of the Alberto-Benveniste Center for Sephardic Studies and the Sociocultural History of the Jews (Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes/CNRS/Université Paris-Sorbonne). He is the winner of the Alberto Benveniste Research Award for 2009 for his publications on Turkish Jewry.

The event begins at 7:30 p.m., at 395 Concord Ave., Belmont. The NAASR Bookstore will open at 7 p.m. the night of the lecture. Model Citizens of The State: The Jews of Turkey during the Multi-Party Period will be available for purchase the night of the lecture. For more information about this program, call 617-489-1610 or e-mail [email protected]

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