The March 12th 1971 coup d’état traumatised the Turkish nation and its political and social culture. It was a pivotal moment in the struggles within Turkish politics between secularism, nationalism, and Islamism which remain part of the national discourse to this day. The ‘March 12th novels’ is a retroactive umbrella term used to describe the works of fiction written between 1971 and 1980 which take as their inspiration the events surrounding the coup d’état; the military takeover, the battle between revolutionary left wing activists and nationalists, and the political and social fallout of the coup. This study aims to give new insight into the novels by asserting their significance as artefacts of cultural memory. Far from being propagandist works as previous critics have suggested, these novels, with their complexities, contrasts, and fictional imaginings critique the power relations which shaped the period far more effectively than biographical and historical works. As it will demonstrate, the aesthetics of the novels are driven by power and each character is a function of that power, exploring the relationship between the state and individual members of society.