Mesadet Maria Sözmen received her BA in 2014, and MA in 2016 from the department of Political Science and International Relations at Boğazici University. She is currently a PhD candidate in the Department of Global Studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Her research interests include Turkish political history and the history and politics of gender and sexuality in Turkey and the Middle East.
Her dissertation aims to understand the relationship between women’s and/or feminist organizations and the Turkish state from the 1950s to present in different politically oppressive moments in the country’s political history. By looking at the making of public discourses and practices on sex work, reproduction, motherhood and family respectively in 1950s, early 1980s, 1990s and post-2013 in Turkey, with a focus on feminist dissidence to and complicity with the state, the thesis aims to contribute to understandings of radical notions of democracy in Turkey.