Monday, July 02, 2012

Book Review (#6 of 2012) Turkey: Turkey: Federal Research Study and Country Profile

Turkey: Federal Research Study and Country Profile with Comprehensive Information, History, and Analysis- Library of Congress.
This 414 page tome is a must-read for anyone living in Turkey, as it will tell you everything possible to know about the country up to the mid-1990s. It was written by several researchers at the Library of Congress and is thus like a greatly expanded encyclopedia entry. Everything about the history, geography, climate, agriculture, economy, military, and politics of Turkey. Since most of it ends in the mid-90s, it misses the rise of the AK Party, the lessening of the military's role in politics, and the struggles with potential EU integration.

I learned a great many facts about Turkey, including its ancient history. The 1980s history was probably the most interesting, part of Turkey's great battle with inward-looking central planning vs. an outward-focused giant of economic potential.  There is a lot of information about Turkey's historical minorities, religions, regional differences, etc.

This book is boring unless you love reading the encyclopedia. But you'll be well-rewarded by knowing more than your friends about Turkey. I give it 4 stars out of 5.