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Document Type

Article

Abstract

The goal of this paper is to explore the place of honor in an increasingly rationalized world, in which individuals are characterized by their interchangeability. To do so, the honor principle in two societies which, although in geographical proximity, represent distinct traditions, France and Turkey, was analyzed. The goal was to grasp the multiple understandings of honor among young adults, defined as those between the age of 20 and 27 years old in these two societies. In the Turkish language, honor translates to şeref, which means the personal value felt by an individual coming from the other’s respect, or the good reputation won by virtue. Honor and şeref are necessary as personal principles according to social representations, helping people navigate society through the social recognition of others. They require self-control of both body and impulses. For interviewees in both countries, this meant a principle of containment and restraint, forming a civic honor associated with being “civilized.” However, respondents in both countries tended to refer to another type of honor, which they qualified as “barbarous” and impulsive. All these dualities in the understanding of honor, apparent in French and Turkish views, seem to give rise to an “Us” and a “Them,” established according to divergences in conceptions of honor.