Dr. Mark Meirowitz is Assistant Professor of Humanities at SUNY Maritime College in New York. He holds a doctorate in Political Science as well as a law degree.
Changing Turkey: Could you inform our readers about your recent and forthcoming publications? What are the main arguments that you defend in your recent works?
Dr. Meirowitz: I just completed articles for Turkish publications on the recent (and impending) leadership changes in the US Congress and the Administration and the potential impact of these changes on Turkey and Turkish-US relations. These changes, in particular the appointment of new chairs of key committees and new Secretaries of Defense and State, will have significant implications for Turkey in the Second Obama Term. I am also writing a piece for another Turkish publication on recent developments in Turkish Foreign Policy and Turkish-American Relations. In addition, I am writing a book on Turkish Foreign Policy.
Changing Turkey: What are the potential limitations of the existing analyses on Turkish politics and society, in your opinion?
Dr. Meirowitz: As an American academic, I think that writings on Turkish-American Relations and Turkish Foreign Policy don’t always fully appreciate (or identify) the domestic sources of foreign policy in the US. This is particularly significant for writings about US politics which do not always clearly delineate how the American system works and the impact of domestic politics on foreign policy. Former US House of Representatives Speaker Tip O’Neill said “All politics is local” – this point is not always explained thoroughly in analyses of American Politics related to Turkish-American Relations, including actions in Congress that have a major impact on Turkey.
Changing Turkey: Could you suggest any valuable books about Turkish society and politics? Is there anything you would like to add?
Dr. Meirowitz: Here are a few books that I have found particularly useful /interesting: M. şükrü Hanioğlu, Ataturk: An Intellectual Biography; Umut Uzer, Identity and Turkish Foreign Policy; Zeyno Baran, Torn Country; and a recent historical novel about Turkey, Istanbul Passage by Joseph Kanon (not academic but very enjoyable to read). I also found very thought provoking Bernard Lewis’ comments on Turkey in his recent memoir, Notes On A Century: Reflections Of A Middle East Historian.
I would like to add that I find the study of Turkey, Turkish-American Relations and Turkish Foreign Policy to be fascinating. The actions taken by Turkey , as a major regional global power, have the most profound significance in world politics. As such, this area of study is dynamic, ever-changing and always fulfilling.