This book focuses on the hidden but ever-present civil society dimension of the EU's policies towards Turkey and uncovers the pitfall of EU-Turkey relations. It establishes the growing depoliticization of Turkish civil society (in contrast to what the EU's policies aimed for) and engages with the questions of why and how Turkish civil society depoliticized. It discusses how Turkey's retreating democracy, and the intense polarization in Turkish political and social life make rights-based activism more difficult. Finally, this book investigates what implications Turkish civil society's depoliticization bears for EU-Turkey relations, reveals the diminishing leverage of the EU's policies and discusses how this reflects on Turkey's already closing civic space. It explains why and how EU-Turkey relations deteriorated over the last decade, examines the current stalemate, and discusses why civil society matters. This text will be of key interest to scholars and students in the field of EU-Turkey relations, Turkish studies and civil society studies as well as more broadly to NGOs, European studies and politics, and International Relations.