** Turkish school uniform -- garments smocks

Turkish School Garments: Smock

Figure 1.--Here we see a Turkish boy in his school smock, probably durng the 1950s.

The first school smocks in Turkey appeared in private Christian schools. The first was the Sisters of Notre Dame de Sion (1856). They did not at first have much impact and The Oyyoman Empire dis jot have a comprehensive public school system, but they seemed vo have created an image of modern European education that many Turks noticed. They were black smocks worn with large white collars. [Özen] Another Christian school, Saint Joseph was founded by Soeurs de Saint Joseph in Turkey. [Curtis, 1995, p. 484.] They bwere another model for black smocks with white collars. Some Turkish children began wearing black smocks to school in the early 20th century before the schhols required it, but this is difficult to quantify. The Tukish Republic which emerged from World War I took an interrest in clothing as partbof a modernizatiin and secularization effort. The fez was banned and religious garb (especially relate to girls) was banned in the schools. We are not sure just when black msmocks became common in the public schools. n\but this appears to have been before they were specifically mandated by the ministry of education. There wre quite a few regulationms about clothing issued by the Ministry (1924-34). As best we can tell, black smocks and white collars were a uniform requirement (1930s). Subsequent regulations shifted the color from black to blue. We do mot yet have images from the inter-War era. Images from the post-World War II era show all mprimary school children wearing black or blue smocks with white collars. The earliest images wee have found come from what looks like the 1950s. We believe that the smocks with white collars were introduced before World War II, but we are not sure just when. It must have been a Ministry of Education regulation as smocks with whhite collars were so universally worn by school children. And smock colors were also universally adopted. The Ministry of Education apparently decided to end the blue smock requirement and permit other uniform styles (2010). The Ministry made the change to make students feel comfortable within school the school environment. [Hesapçioglu and Giorgetti]


Curtis, A. S. "Lay habits: Religious teachers and the secularization crisis of 1901-1904," French History Vol. 9, No. 4 (1995), pp. 478-98.

Hesapçioglu, Muhsin and F󰁩l󰁩z Meseci Giorgetti. "The origin of black mmock and white collar".

Özen, S. Yüzelli Yılın Tanığı Notre Dame de Sion (İstanbul: Yapı Kredi Yayın-ları, 2006).


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Created: 12:38 PM 4/11/2019
Last updated: 12:38 PM 4/11/2019