translator of turkish. phd student in cultural anthropology.


'What Does the State Want from Dead Bodies?': Suruç and the History of Unmournability

"Kurds and Alevis killed by the state and its actors are fundamentally unmournable. In order to maintain the illusion of its own legitimacy, the state has to frame such deaths as either meaningless, necessary, or both. Mournability is a privilege reserved for those whose deaths corroborate this illusion; hence the emotional outpouring over the deaths of police officers and soldiers who have been “martyred” in the line of duty. Mourning and grief are therefore better understood as affective tools used to patrol the boundaries of the nation-state, providing meaning, solace, and comfort to those who belong within it while permitting for the remorseless annihilation of those who do not." 


Nicholas Glastonbury