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Mehmet Ragip Zik

Mehmet Ragip Zik

Dissertation Project: “Visual activism in a digital era: Mobilisation through images in the Gezi Movement and the Anti-Coup Resistance”

PhD Candidate

PhD project

The project focuses on the ways in which online images mobilise people in contemporary social movements across political divides. The study compares two popular mobilisations from recent Turkish political history that have incompatible political goals. Using grounded visual analysis, an original research method based on visual grounded theory and combined with semiotic and iconological approaches, the project examines photographs and illustrations disseminated in digital media within the context of two cases.



  • Since 2015: PhD Candidate in Sociology, Freie Universität Berlin
  • 2004 – 2008: MA in Cultural Studies, Istanbul Bilgi University
    (Dissertation title: “In Pursuit of Reunification: Interventions in Everyday Life through Art in New Social Movements”)
  • 2000 – 2004: BA in Management, Yildiz Technical University
    (Dissertation title: “Sivil Toplum Kuruluşlarında Örgüt Kültürü ve Gönüllülük” - in Turkish. “Organizational Culture and Volunteerism in NGOs”)


Research Interests

  • Visual sociology
  • Digital media
  • Social movements
  • Grounded theory



Please see https://fu-berlin.academia.edu/RagipZik for an up-to-date list of publications

  • Zık, M. Ragıp. 2019. “Making of a Common Woman Figure: Convergence and Struggle of Visual Practices around Gezi’s Icon”. In Popularisation and Populism through the Visual Arts: Attraction Images. edited by A. Schober. London: Routledge.
  • Co-author in: Bens, J. et al. 2019. The Politics of Affective Societies: An Interdisciplinary Essay. Bielefeld: transcript Verlag. https://tinyurl.com/yy7usbsf
  • Zık, M. Ragıp. 2018. One building, several facades: political showcasing in contemporary Turkey. Open Democracy / ISA RC-47: Open Movements, 17 October. http://tiny.cc/zqlh7y 
  • Zık, M. Ragıp. 2018. Visuals and Salient Identities: construction of “Gezi Spirit” as a Multifaceted Identity through Images. TransScripts, 7. Pp.1-29. http://tiny.cc/f3lh7y 
  • Zık, M. Ragıp. 2015. Raising a Resistance: Reinterpreting Art within Gezi Movement, Pp. 535-543 Global Activism: Art and Conflict in the 21th Century, edited by Peter Weibel. Cambridge, MA: ZKM | Karlsruhe and MIT Press. https://refubium.fu-berlin.de/handle/fub188/20831
  • Zık, M. Ragıp and Cécile Barbeito. 2013. “Still Waiting for Peace…” Coyote, 19:42-46, Strasbourg: Council of Europe Publishing. https://tinyurl.com/yxcf77ko
  • Zık, M. Ragıp. 2009. “Avrupa’da Sivil Toplum ve Sosyal Merkezler Örneği (Civil Society in Europe and ‘Social Centers’ Example)”, Kelebek Etkisi, special issue:23-25, Istanbul (in Turkish). https://tinyurl.com/yyv7acl6
  • Zık, M. Ragıp. 2005. “Giritli Mübadillerde Kimlik ve Toplumsal Hafıza” (Identity and Collective Identity among Cretan Population Exchangees), Istanbul. https://tinyurl.com/y35p2vly




Conferences & Interactive Presentations

  • Lecturer in “A visual analysis of dissent through common man/woman images in Gezi and Anti-Coup protests”, University of Thessaly, Volos, 20 Nov 2019
  • Keynote speaker in “Visual Contentions in Contemporary Turkish Politics”, D21, Leipzig, 6 Oct 2018
  • Artist/Researcher, “Workshop: Narrating Images”, Center for Art and Urbanistics (ZK/U), Berlin, 22 Mar 2018
  • Artist/Researcher, “Card Game: Errant Iconographies”, Center for Art and Urbanistics (ZK/U), Berlin, 22 Feb 2018
  • Artist/Researcher, “Mini Interactive Exhibition: Images that Move (Us)”, Center for Art and Urbanistics (ZK/U), Berlin, 25 Jan 2018
  • Speaker, “Affective Visuals in Online Spaces”, German Anthropology Association Conference, Berlin, 5-8 October 2017
  • Speaker, “Digitality and Everyday Life: affective interactions across Greece and Turkey through visual images”, Crossroads in Cultural Studies, Sydney, 14-17 December 2016
  • Speaker, “Digitality and Emotions in Social Movements”, Turkologentag European Convention on Turkic, Ottoman and Turkish Studies, Hamburg, 14-17 September 2016
  • Speaker, “Digitality and Circulation of Affect in Contemporary Social Movements”, Re-Configurations, History, Remembrance and Transformation Processes Academy, Tunis, 28 August - 4 September 2016
  • Speaker, “Digitality, Visual Rhetoric and Affect Circulation in Contemporary Social Movements”, European Consortium for Political Research Graduate Student Conference, Tartu, 11-14 July 2016
  • Speaker, “Making Encounters through Art: a case story from Turkey”, with Research Institute Turkey at Left Forum, New York, 29-31 May 2015
  • Keynote speaker, “Young People as Actors of Peace-building in Europe”, Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly Sub Committee on Education and Youth, Strasbourg, 28 January 2015
  • Speaker, “Exhibition: 20 Dollars 20 Kilos”, Historical Culture in Divided Societies: From Theory to Practice Conference, Home for Cooperation, Nicosia, 18-20 December 2014
  • Speaker, “Interventions through Art in Social Movements: The Case of Gezi”, Global Activism Symposium, ZKM, Karlsruhe, 24-25 January 2014


Professional Vita


Service (a selection)