What Is Honour Essay

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The purpose of this text is to elucidate the causes of honor killings in Turkey and in the Turkish law, system to explain how they affect these murders. So, in this text, the aim is to raise awareness about the problem of custom and honor that has been going on for years. While writing this text, various articles on this subject were read, and information was reached about this problem of Turkey and its legal dimension. As a result, this knowledge is transmitted into the text by making use of these articles.

Tradition and honor killings, which are forms of family violence in the past and present, are one of the major problems faced by women, especially in the Mediterranean, Middle Eastern countries, and Muslim countries such as Turkey. “There are many reasons behind these problems such as social, cultural, economic and many factors that come from history and geography, not from religion.” So what are the concepts of honor and customs that led to these murders? Firstly, “customs; are effective and coercive rules of conduct arising from social institutions such as traditions which are adopted, accepted and obliged by a society.” The main reason for honor killings in countries that embraced patriarchal ideologies, like Turkey is the concept of honor.

So what is honor? Honor is the commitment of people in society to dignity and moral rules. In such societies and regions, “not only the person who spoils the honor but also the other members of the family are perceived as dishonorable by the society.” Accordingly, the decision of the family councils imposes several punishments and these punishments are usually death penalties that take away the person's right to live. Even” In most cases, the husband or the husband’s younger brother, or the brother of the victim, is ordered to carry out the murder.”

“Honor killings are localized in the most socioeconomically troubled areas where incomes are extremely low, formal education is inadequate.” It is known that these murders mostly occur in the Southeastern Anatolia Region (especially in Şanlıurfa) and the Eastern Anatolia Region. In particular, “customs, tribal laws, feudal structures, and economic imbalances have made the Southeastern Anatolia Region the center of honor killings.” In the tribal families in these regions, “women's honor is the family's honor and bestowal.” If the woman acts in conversely with the customs, “the punishment of these crimes was carried out by the family or tribal chiefs during the periods when the power of punishment was not completely transferred to the state.” The first and the most important question that comes to mind here is how people, especially men, can kill their relatives, in other words, their mothers, sisters, and wives. ” “In Turkey, honor killings, which constitute concrete acts of violence against women, respond to a wide variety of motives, notably: an out-of-wedlock pregnancy, a marriage unaccepted by the family, a love affair outside of marriage, a visit to a cinema in the company of friends, a love message to a current or potential lover, rumors of dishonorable conduct, the wish to divorce, the forfeiture of a woman’s honor after rape.”For example, there is news about it:

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“The 17-year-old Özlem Alçeken, escaping her family ten days ago with her cousin from Gaziantep, Nuray İzbulan, was caught by the İnegöl police, and handed over to her family. Being very upset due to this event, Nuray İzbulan killed herself by jumping down from the fourth floor of their apartment. Suffering too much from his granddaughter’s death, İsmail Hakkı Alçeken, decided to take his daughter Özlem to the hospital for a check of virginity yesterday. Upon the reply he received from his daughter, ‘I am not a virgin anymore.’ the 63-year-old İsmail Hakkı Alçeken was shocked, and harshly hit the dagger into the maiden’s ventral.”

Depending on this, it can be said that “Although the concept of honor and the concepts of chastity and purity that have similar contents with it are related to human thoughts, intentions, and all behaviors, their association with the woman's body and its meaning within a narrow framework is again only for women. Although it is not seen as a falling responsibility, it is the result of another understanding fed by the traditional mentality, social structure, and tradition.”

Despite the 21st century, in Turkey 'honor' concept under the name of honor killings is processed. Various reasons limiting women as the basis of these murders are put forward by the family councils. However, since the articles of the Turkish Penal Code are incentives for these murders, these deaths do not end. Another article based on the protection of honor is TPC 472. “According to the Turkish Penal Code 472, if the act of abortion is committed with the motive of redeeming the honor and dignity of a person or one of his or her relatives, the penalty shall be reduced from half to two-thirds.” Such articles protecting the murders of the concept of honor have been accepted due to public pressure and have legitimized these honorary murders.

As a result, However, this does not mean that the murders are unsolved. In my opinion, the first solution is to change the thoughts that cause these murders. Increasing educational opportunities for this purpose will be more effective in changing this idea. Parents ask minors to commit these murders to benefit from the penalty reduction. This penalty should be prevented by the laws to be enacted. Besides, the number of women's shelters, which is a temporary solution for women fleeing the ceremony, should be increased.

References

    1. Avcı, Mustafa(2005),’Töre Cinayetleri Açısından Sosyal-Hukuki Düzenlemelerin Evrimi’ Ekev Akademik Dergisi,22, p.1-26.
    2. Yıldız, M. Cengiz(2008),’Türkiye’de Töre Baskısına Bağlı İntiharlar Ve Töre Cinayetleri’ Sosyal Bilimler Enstitüsü, Vol:1, Y:9, No:16, p.209-231.
    3. Yıldız, M. Cengiz(2008),’Türkiye’de Töre Baskısına Bağlı İntiharlar Ve Töre Cinayetleri’ Sosyal Bilimler Enstitüsü, Vol:1, Y:9, No:16, p.209-231.
    4. Vargün, Berivan& Tekin,Üzeyi (2012),’Aile Kurumu Çerçevesinde Töre Ve Namus Cinayetleri’ Muhafazar Düşünce, Y:8, No:31, p.101-117.
    5. Vargün, Berivan& Tekin,Üzeyi (2012),’Aile Kurumu Çerçevesinde Töre Ve Namus Cinayetleri’ Muhafazar Düşünce, Y:8, No:31, p.101-117.
    6. Ahmetbeyzade, Cihan(2008),’ Gendering Necropolitics: The Juridical-Political Sociality of Honor Killings in Turkey’Journal of Human Rights,p.187-206.
    7. Sev’er, Aysan& Yurdakul, Gökçeçiçek(2001),’ Culture of Honor, Culture of Change’Violence Against Women, Vol:7, No:9,p.964-998.
    8. Yıldız, M. Cengiz(2008),’Türkiye’de Töre Baskısına Bağlı İntiharlar Ve Töre Cinayetleri’ Sosyal Bilimler Enstitüsü, Vol:1, Y:9, No:16, p.209-231.
    9. Vargün, Berivan& Tekin,Üzeyi (2012),’Aile Kurumu Çerçevesinde Töre Ve Namus Cinayetleri’ Muhafazar Düşünce, Y:8, No:31, p.101-117.
    10. Avcı, Mustafa(2005),’Töre Cinayetleri Açısından Sosyal-Hukuki Düzenlemelerin Evrimi’ Ekev Akademik Dergisi,22, p.1-26.
    11. Yıldız, M. Cengiz(2008),’Türkiye’de Töre Baskısına Bağlı İntiharlar Ve Töre Cinayetleri’ Sosyal Bilimler Enstitüsü, Vol:1, Y:9, No:16, p.209-231.
    12. Şimşek,Sefa(2000-2001),’The Disembedded Custom: Intrafamily Murders For Sexual Honor In Turkish Metropolises’ U.Ü Fen-Edebiyat Fakültesi Sosyal Bilimler Dergisi, Y:2, No:2,p.61-75.
    13. Göztepe, Ece(2011),’ Honour Killings And the Law In Turkey’Nova Science Publishers, Chapter 19,p.191-199.
    14. Şimşek,Sefa(2000-2001),’The Disembedded Custom: Intrafamily Murders For Sexual Honor In Turkish Metropolises’ U.Ü Fen-Edebiyat Fakültesi Sosyal Bilimler Dergisi, Y:2, No:2,p.61-75.
    15. Avcı, Mustafa(2005),’Töre Cinayetleri Açısından Sosyal-Hukuki Düzenlemelerin Evrimi’ Ekev Akademik Dergisi,22, p.1-26.
    16. Vargün, Berivan& Tekin,Üzeyi (2012),’Aile Kurumu Çerçevesinde Töre Ve Namus Cinayetleri’ Muhafazar Düşünce, Y:8, No:31, p.101-117.
    17. Oktay Yılmaz, Berrin,’ Geleneklerin Ardındaki Ölümler’https://dergipark.org.tr/tr/download/article-file/7195 last accessed 23.11.2019
    18. Oktay Yılmaz, Berrin,’ Geleneklerin Ardındaki Ölümler’https://dergipark.org.tr/tr/download/article-file/7195 last accessed 23.11.2019
    19. Avcı, Mustafa(2005),’Töre Cinayetleri Açısından Sosyal-Hukuki Düzenlemelerin Evrimi’ Ekev Akademik Dergisi,22, p.1-26.
    20. Şimşek,Sefa(2000-2001),’The Disembedded Custom: Intrafamily Murders For Sexual Honor In Turkish Metropolises’ U.Ü Fen-Edebiyat Fakültesi Sosyal Bilimler Dergisi, Y:2, No:2,p.61-75.
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