The Weltpolitik and “Other” Side of Friendship: The Ottoman Image in German Political Cartoons

Eren Deniz Özçin

Abstract: This work is about German political cartoons about the Ottoman Empire during the First World War (1914-1918). The aim of the study is to discuss Germany’s Orientalist perception about the Ottoman Empire through these cartoons. In this context, the basic assumption of the work is that Germany’s Orientalist attitude is related to Weltpolitik (World Politics), which was adopted during the Wilhelm II period (1918-1918) and had an imperialist character. In this period, Germany abandoned Otto von Bismarck’s balance policy centered on Europe and adopted Weltpolitik aimed at acquiring overseas colonies, and accordingly turned its attention especially to the Near East. Within the scope of Weltpolitik, Germany tried to influence the Ottoman Empire economically, militarily and politically in order to colonize the Near East geography on the basis of neo-colonialism. Therefore, the Ottoman Empire, as a part of the Orient, became the “other” to be dominated in the eyes of Germany. Thus, as can be seen in the cartoons, the Ottoman and Turkish images were identified with negative qualities for the Germans within the context of Orientalism.

Keywords: Germany, Ottoman Empire, Cartoons, Orientalism, Weltpolitik

Eren Deniz Özçin
DOI: 10.29224/insanveinsan.1057881
Year 9, Issue 32, Spring 2022

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