Ottoman Urban Studies Seminar

Ottoman Urban Studies Seminar

Zentrum Moderner Orient • Centre for Modern Oriental Studies Geisteswissenschaftliche Zentren Berlin e.V. Kirchweg 33, 14129 Berlin Telefon (030) 80307-0 Fax (030) 80307-210 email:
Kirchweg 33 (S-Bahn Nikolasee)
From - Until
30.10.2006 - 02.07.2006
Dr. Nora Lafi

What is the historical experience of cities in the former territories of the Ottoman Empire - in the Balkans, Anatolia, the Middle East, and North Africa - in dealing with the impact of global changes and the transformation from Empire to nation States? How did people of different cultural, social and religious backgrounds live together? How are such examples of conviviality, conflict, migration, and urban regimes of governance and stratification conceptualized? And how have urban traditions been reinterpreted, and what bearing does this have on modern conceptions of civil society, multicultural societies, migration, or cosmopolitanism. These and other ques-tions will be addressed in this Seminar in Ottoman Urban Studies.

The seminar, which is to take place twice a month, is conceived as a working seminar of the ZMO and the research program 'Europe in the Middle East – The Middle East in Europe' (EUME, research field 'Cities Compared: Cosmopolitanism in the Mediterranean and Adjacent Regions') of the Berlin-Brandenburgische Akademie der Wissenschaften, the Fritz Thyssen Stiftung, and the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin, aimed at presenting and discussing ongoing research of scholars working on the social, institutional, political and cultural history of the Ottoman Empire and its successor States with an emphasis on Ottoman Urban Studies. Partici-pants will be researchers of the ZMO, the Fellows of Europe in the Middle East – The Middle East in Europe and researchers from Universities in and outside Berlin. For comparative perspectives the participation of historians working on similar issues in other geographical contexts is encouraged. The working language of the seminar will be English.


October 30: Dr. Nora Lafi (ZMO), Introduction: New Stakes in the Urban History of the Ottoman Empire

I - The roots of urban governance in the Ottoman Empire

November 13: Prof. Peter Schreiner (Universität zu Köln and Centro tedesco di Studi Veneziani): “Urban Governance in Byzantine Cities and Questions on the Passage to Ottoman rule”

November 27: Prof. Ahmed Akgündüz (Islamic University of Rotterdam), “The Islamic Hisba and the roots of Urban Government Principles in the Ottoman Empire”

II –Aspects of the Ottoman Urban Old Regime: Government, Economy, Society

December 11: Dr. Magdi Guirguis (Cairo University, Georg Graf Fellow of the Katholischer Akademischer Ausländerdienst), “Coptic Community and Urban Society in Ottoman Cairo”

January 8: Dr. Hannes Grandits (University of Graz): “Power and Loyality in Herzegovinian Cities before 1876”

January 22: Dr. Dana Sajdi (Fellow of 'Europe in the Middle East - The Middle East in Europe' 2006/7), "Damascus in the 18th Century: What Kind of Civic Sphere?"

February 5: Prof. Nelly Hanna (American University Cairo), “Guild Waqfs in 18th century Cairo”

III – New Trends in the Social History of Ottoman Towns

February 19: Dr. Florian Riedler (ZMO.), “Seasonal Workers in Istanbul”

March 5: Prof. Donald Quataert (Binghamton University), “Methodological Aspects of the New Social History of Ottoman Towns”

March 19: Dr. Malte Fuhrmann (ZMO.), “Lower Class Austro-Hungarian and German Immi-grants in Ottoman Cities”

IV – New Perspectives on the Ottoman Urban Reforms and the rise of nationalism

April 2: Dr. Zerrin Biner (Fellow of 'Europe in the Middle East - The Middle East in Europe' 2006/7), “Cosmopolitanism and changes in the civic identity in Mardin”

April 16: Canay Sahin-Fuhrmann (ZMO) “Urban notables in Ottoman Anatolia”

April 30: Johann Büssow (FU), “The Ottoman Reforms in Urban Palestine”

May 14: Sawsan Agha Kassab (University of Tripoli):”Questions on the Urban Society: Saida and Beirut at the beginning of the XIX century”

June 4: Prof. Ilber Ortayli (Topkapı Palace, Istanbul), “The Ottoman Urban Reforms and the role of the State”

June 18: Dr. Zafer Yenal (Fellow of 'Europe in the Middle East - The Middle East in Europe' 2006/7), “Urban sociability in Istanbul in the time of the reforms”

July 2: Conclusion: Prof. Ulrike Freitag (ZMO) and Dr. Nora Lafi (ZMO)

Contact (announcement)

Dr. Nora Lafi
Zentrum Moderner Orient
Geisteswissenschaftliche Zentren Berlin e.V.
Kirchweg 33
14129 Berlin
Tel: (030) 80307-0
Fax: (030) 80307-210
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