Date of Award

January 2018

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Caroline Campbell


This thesis argues that the positive portrayal of the Gulen (Hizmet) movement in the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal is a direct result of persistent Orientalism in the American academia and news media. The evidence reveals that most of the articles published in the New York Times and in the Wall Street Journal Between 1985 and 2016 and the majority of academic works completely ignored the controversial nature of the Gulen movement. This favorable approach portrays Islam as monolithic and indicates the otherness of Muslims by subjecting them to a separate set of standards for “moderation.” This is problematic for two distinct reasons. First, it shows that Orientalism is still persistent well into the year 2016. Furthermore, when referring to Gulen as “moderate and progressive,” the journalists and academics falsely portray all Muslims negatively since this portrayal indicates Gulen’s ideology is moderate in comparison to all

interpretations of Islam.