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Mehmet Ozan Asik

M. Ozan Aşık is a PhD candidate in the Department of Sociology and a member of Hughes Hall at the University of Cambridge. Ozan works under the supervision of Professor John Thompson. His research focuses on television journalists in Turkish mainstream news media, and how they represent Kurdish and Arab identities –Turkey’s two significant national ‘Others’– in the cultural production of news. Drawing upon over a year of ethnographic fieldwork in the newsrooms, he argues the case of new modes of representation that produces a new vision of investigative and democratic journalism, through which the journalists perceive the Kurds or Arabs as ‘our fellows’, aligning the imageries of these communities with their own journalistic pro-democracy agendas.

Academic Background

Ozan graduated with a BSc degree in Sociology from Ege University in Turkey as the valedictorian of the class of 2003. He read for a MSc in Middle East Studies at Middle East Technical University in Turkey, where he also worked as research assistant for two and half years. For his Master’s thesis study on the Egyptian religious educational system, he conducted fieldwork in Cairo for three months in 2005. During his postgraduate education at Middle East Technical University, he won the Course Performance Award and his Master’s thesis entitled “A Sociological Analysis of Religious Educational Institutions, Policies and Discourses in Egypt” was awarded with the 2007 Best Thesis Prize in Social Sciences by the university.

Research Interests

Sociology of media; anthropology of news; nationalism; Islamism; cultural sociology; social theory; Middle East (in particular Turkey and Egypt); ethnography.



Aşık, M. Ozan (2008) Religious Education in Egypt: A Sociological Analysis of Contesting Religious Educational Institutions, Policies and Discourses (VDM Verlag).


Peer-reviewed Journals

Aşık, M. Ozan (2012) ‘Contesting Religious Educational Discourses and Institutions in Contemporary Egypt,’ Social Compass, 59 (1): 84-101 (SSCI).

Aşık, M. Ozan & Erdemir, Aykan (2010) ‘Westernization as Cultural Trauma: Egyptian Radical Islamist Discourse on Religious Education,’ Journal for the Study of Religions and Ideologies, 9 (25): 111-132 (AHCI).

Aşık, M. Ozan (2007) ‘Mısır ve Türkiye Örneğinde Yükselen İslamcılık ve Dini Eğitim Üzerine Farklı Yaklaşımlar’ [The Rising Islamism in the Cases of Turkey and Egypt and Different Approaches to Religious Education], Kırkbudak: Journal of Anatolian Folk Belief, 9: 65-77.

Aşık, M. Ozan (2006) ‘1851 Yılından Günümüze İran Eğitim Sisteminin Beklenmeyen Sonuçları’ [The Unintended Consequences of the Iranian Educational System from 1851 Onwards], Sosyoloji Dergisi. Ege Üniversitesi Edebiyat Fakültesi Yayınları, 16: 137-159.


Book Chapter

Aşık, M. Ozan (forthcoming) ‘The Fall of the Public and the Emergence of Ideology in the Journalistic Culture as a Site of Moral Contestation in Turkey,’ in Gholam Khiabany et al. (eds), Handbook of Media and Culture in the Middle East. Blackwell.

Other Commentary

Aşık, M. Ozan. 'Gazetecinin Varolma Stratejileri: Altaylı Vak’ası' [The
Survival Strategies of the Journalist: the Altaylı Case], Bianet (Feb
19, 2014)

Aşık, M. Ozan & Mesquita, Nuno C. 'It’s the Democracy, Stupid: a
Comparative Analysis of Recent Protests in Brazil and Turkey,' Open
Democracy (Aug 15, 2013)

Selected Conference Papers

2014 ‘Human Agency and the Everyday in Nationalism Studies: A Case Study of Television Journalists in Turkey.’ Everyday Nationhood – A one-day symposium to examine the contributions of Michael Billig’s study of Banal Nationalism. Birkbeck College, University of London, UK.

2014 ‘The Emergence of the New Modes of Investigative Journalism through the Re-construction of the National ‘Other’.’ 11th MeCCSA Postgraduate Network Annual Conference. University of Leeds, UK.

2013 ‘National Intimacy in the News Production of the Arab Spring in Pro-AKP News Media.’ 108th Annual Meeting of the American Sociological Association (ASA). New York, USA.

2013 ‘Re-constitution of the News in the Private Sphere When Journalists are Re-constructing the ‘Other’.’ Advancing Media Production Research, International Communication Association (ICA) Post-Conference, International Association for Media and Communication Research (IAMCR) Pre-conference. University of Leeds, UK.

2012 ‘Mediating Erdoğan to the Islamic Nation(s): the Arab Spring Speech and Turkey’s Pro-AKP Media.’ 9th International Conference Crossroads of Civilization. Paris, France.

2011 ‘Confictual Approaches to Nationalism in the Islamic discourse of the Late Ottoman Society: A Case Study of Sebilü’r-reşad, 1908-1924.’ Middle East History and Theory Conference. Center for Middle Eastern Studies, the University of Chicago, USA.

Other Professional Service and Activities

Member: American Sociological Association; UK Higher Education Academy; Cambridge University, Hughes Hall Boat Club.

Reviewer: Diaspora, Indigenous, and Minority Education (indexed in ERIC); Current Sociology (indexed in SSCI)


  • E-mail:
  • Address: Department of Sociology, Free School Lane, Cambridge CB2 3RQ
  • Supervisor: Professor John Thompson
  • College: Hughes Hall
  • Thesis Title: Representing the National ‘Other’ in the News Production of the Television Media in Turkey