Winter Sleep is the latest film from Nuri Bilge Ceylan, a Turkish director and
screenwriter who has received international acclaim. For the purpose of social and cultural
analysis, this article critically focuses on the film’s key themes and maneuvers that
have diagnostic value from a social theoretical viewpoint. These themes are religion, the
relationship between religion and capitalism, and symbolic exchange. Organized around
these topics, the article examines the religion-capitalism-symbolic exchange nexus by
analyzing the motifs of formation, intervention, and intelligibility as these themes arise.
This site of intersection is the conceptual pivot around which the article configures
itself. It explores Winter Sleep based on what the film shows and says on screen, how its
thought processes emerge, and at what points this thought supports or conflicts with
dominant societal opinions.