Following write-up is my personal view and non academic, ordinary interpretation of the Hodja, supported by Pertev Naili Boratav's academic research.
Nasreddin Hodja, or Nasrettin Hoca in modern Turkish, is a widely known and acclaimed character in Turkish folklore, and throughout the world. His position in Turkish Folklore and Culture is more like a humorous and philosophic man of people. Moral values and traditions are being taught with the help of his stories, or anecdotes. Although there is a consensus on his personality and the list of stories that are attributed to him, some researchers helped clearing some facts about this character and blow this popular belief that this person has always been the enlightened, moral face of the people.
Turkish folklorist and author Pertev Naili Boratav, portrays a completely different and controversial Nasreddin Hodja in his book "Nasreddin Hoca" (Edebiyatçılar Derneği Yayınları, Ankara 1996). He says that most of the stories that were intentionally or mistakenly attributed to Hoca, actually belonged to other anonymous personalities or regions other than Nasrettin Hoca's area. Because Boratav's collection of Nasrettin Hoca stories or anecdotes, mostly consist of more sexual puns and immoral actions, and actually reflects the common rabble's living and daily communications. This strictly contradicts with the portrayal of Nasrettin Hoca, because throughout the time, this character was more used to teach about the moral issues and original portrayal has been considered rude, vulgar and not reflecting the ideal personality in modern Turkish life. When you consider this view, it shouldn't be surprising to hear that the book has been censored, but the surprising part should be that the book was censored prior to publishing, by the publisher itself, so that the book wasn't published at all. This kept the research away from public eye for a while but when the Association of Littérateurs decided to print the research, the controversy surfaced.
Boratav's research sure removed the Islamic, dogmatic make up from the face of Nasrettin Hoca and put him in a more realistic point. This caused Nasrettin Hoca to be a more crazy personality who opposes and questions the deity, sometimes trying to punish it for its wrongdoings. The research of Boratav, caused quite a stir amongst the researchers who are more traditional or moving in the direction of a Turkic-Islamic synthesis.
Boratav also showed that the contents or the figures in the Nasrettin Hoca stories were deliberately changed to create a more ideal character. To do that, throughout the time most of those "negative" elements were removed completely or modified to create a more "suitable" context to reflect moral, religious and traditional criteria. According to Boratav, some researchers who were supposedly authorized by the prejudice in public tradition, shows a great effort to attribute Nasrettin Hoca as a more noble or enlightened identity and their efforts to censor all that does not suit him to prove this thesis is just fruitless effort.
Boratav considers Nasrettin Hoca, a "wise man of the folk" or "philosopher of the folk" but he stresses that he is not "perfect in all means". In this context, he sometimes will act like an idiot, or do nonsense stuff, and trying to wash away all those attributes is just useless.
For Boratav, Nasrettin Hoca stories are mostly "common to different nations with different language and cultures", and beside the ones that might be attributed to "Turkish" or "Islamic" society, they should be considered "universal".
He is right, when we look at the modern life in Turkey, a religion supported patriarchal daily life is clearly visible. This includes both the position of women in social life and the daily or routine communication between the majority of men. Men has the right to give the final decision, their word is more or less like law. They are the protector of their women and children, thus their decency, honor and virtue (all both socially and sexually). Their dominance in life is reflected in their daily communications, and their perception of life. When they gather together with friends, they speak about and make fun of other people. They usually end their sentences with vulgar idioms like "f*ck it", as if it is a part of grammar, like a punctuation mark. This usage of vulgar language is supposed to be a threatening. Imagine a society where most of the individuals consider being the active party in a sexual intercourse, excellence, dominance or advantage. Sometimes it is a threat to f*ck another so that it is more like a punishment, thus an indication of dominance and superiority. This moral perception is dead wrong, and there has been a majority who lived by those traditions, at least in Turkish sovereignty on Anatolian Peninsula. This seems to be normalizing this perception amongst the common folk, and accepting a more rude and vulgar Hoca makes more sense. He is absolutely someone who is different, who has quick wits, who is more knowledgeable then the average man. But he is also a part of this patriarchal society (which by the way, is relatively more liberal than the current Islamic society), he is rude, uses the common language that contains a lot of curse words, and fond of sexual talk. An incredibly patient man of wisdom who has a great sense of humor, and tolerant to ignorant people all the time. A person who just tries to teach virtues, and wisdom to a common person, but trying to do this in a way that leads people to think, put out philosophical outcomes. Instead of these, Boratav's Hoca is much more realistic and didactic.