Treating the “youth peril”: Ayhan Songar, psychiatrist at the service of Turkey’s military regime (1980–1983)

The repertoires of repression
By Zeynep Bursa-Millet

Turkey of the 1970s was deeply marked by political violence. Under the military regime (1980-1983), there was close collaboration between the putschists and the right-wing intellectuals around a project of rehabilitation, disciplinarization and penalization of radical youth, considered as the main actor of this violent decade. Ayhan Songar, a prominent figure of the Turkish Right and also a professor of psychiatry and forensic physician, played a key role in this collaboration. Therefore, an analysis of his intellectual and professional trajectory would enhance our understanding of how the military regime sought to scientifically legitimize its power and reforms on youth.

Go to the article on