There have been five different settings that at one time or another have contained the dead body of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, organizer of the Turkish War of Independence (1919-1923) and first president of the Republic of Turkey. Narrating the story of these different architectural constructions - the bedroom in Dolmabahçe Palace, Istanbul, where he died; a temporary catafalque in this same palace; his funeral stage in Turkey’s new capital Ankara; a temporary tomb in the Ankara Ethnographic Museum; and his permanent and monumental mausoleum in Ankara, known in Turkish as ‘Anitkabir’ (Memorial Tomb) - this book also describes and interprets the movement of Atatürk’s body through the cities of Istanbul and Ankara and also the nation of Turkey to reach these destinations.It examines how each one of these locations - accidental, designed, temporary, permanent - has contributed in its own way to the construction of a Turkish national memory about Atatürk. Lastly, the two permanent constructions - the Dolmabahçe Palace bedroom and Anitkabir - have changed in many ways since their first appearance in order to maintain this national memory. These changes are exposed to reveal a dynamic, rather than dull, impression of funerary architecture.
Contents: Introduction; Funerary architecture, representation and Atatürk; Identity, memory, nationalism and architecture; Dolmabahçe Palace; Ankara catafalque; Ethnographic Museum temporary tomb; Anitkabir mausoleum; Maintaining national memory; Conclusion; Bibliography; Index.
About the Author: Christopher S. Wilson teaches architecture and design history at the Ringling College of Art and Design in Sarasota, Florida, USA.
Reviews: 'The book narrates and demonstrates very eloquently the interesting (hi)story of the transportation and location of the remains of the founder of Turkey, starting from the Dolmabahçe Palace in Istanbul to Anıtkabır in Ankara. Wilson offers a highly interesting account of the Turkish national identity process providing new insights, fresh interpretation, and original information, at least for the non-Turkish readers, through a not-so-widely studied field, that of Turkish architecture…' Changing Turkey in a Changing World
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