Oct 25, 2013

The Enlightenment and the Ottoman World

with Harun Küçük

hosted by Nir Shafir

The Enlightenment, a cultural movement emphasizing reason and individualism, is recognized as a phenomenon of increasingly early origins that pervaded early modern European intellectual circles. As one of Europe's largest polities of the period, how then was the Ottoman Empire also party to this intellectual trend? In this episode, Harun Küçük describes what he defines as an Ottoman Enlightenment and explains the ways in which the movement of individuals and ideas linked the Ottoman capital of Istanbul to the broader cultural shifts of the day.

Harun Küçük is a post-doctoral researcher at the Max Planck Institute in Berlin (see academia.edu)
Nir Shafir is a doctoral candidate at UCLA studying Ottoman intellectual history. (see academia.edu)
Episode No. 127
Release date: 27 October 2013
Location: Üsküdar, Istanbul
Editing and Production by Chris Gratien

This episode is part of an ongoing series entitled History of Science, Ottoman or Otherwise.

Citation: "The Enlightenment and the OttomanWorld," Harun Küçük, Nir Shafir, and Chris Gratien, Ottoman History Podcast, No. 127 (October 27, 2013) http://www.ottomanhistorypodcast.com/2013/10/enlightenment-ottoman-empire-intellectuals.html.


Israel, Jonathan. Enlightenment Contested: Philosophy, Modernity and the Emancipation of Man, 1670-1752. Oxford: Oxford UP, 2006.

Robertson, John. The Case for the Enlightenment: Scotland and Naples, 1680-1760. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2005.

Venturi, Franco. Italy and the Enlightenment: Studies in a Cosmopolitan Century. trans. S.J. Woolf. New York: NYU Press, 1972.

Wootton, David. Paolo Sarpi: Between Renaissance and Enlightenment. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1983.

de la Croix, François Pétis. La Turquie crétienne sous la protection de Louis le Grand. Paris: P. Hérissant, 1695.

Papadopoulos, Nikolaus Komnenos. Historia gymnasii patavini. Venice: Apud Sebastianum Coleti, 1726.

Martin, Julian. Francis Bacon, the State and the Reform of Natural Philosophy. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1992.

Podskalsky, Gerhard (SJ). Griechische Theologie in der Zeit der Türkenherrschaft (1453-1821). Munich: C.H. Beck, 1988.

Rodosizade Mehmed. Terceme-yi Vefayatü'l-Ayan li-ibn Hallikan. Istanbul: Matbaa-i Amire, 1280H.

Osmanzade Taib et al. Hadikatü'l-Vüzera. Istanbul: Ceride-i Havadis, 1271H.

Oct 17, 2013

Jewish Citizens on Exhibit | Alma Heckman

l'Alliance Israélite Universelle, the Chicago World's Fair and the Ottoman Empire

Progress, colonialism, nationalism, and the civilizing mission are all concepts associated with the late nineteenth century that were on display at the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago. In this podcast, Alma Heckman discusses the ways in which l'Alliance Israélite Universelle, a Jewish philanthropic organization founded in Paris in 1860, participated in the exposition and in doing so, highlights the ways in which the group's ideology and activities in the realm of education in the Middle East and North Africa contribute to our understanding of these important notions.

Alma Heckman is a doctoral candidate in the Department of History at UCLA focusing on communist movements and Jewish politics in Morocco (see departmental page)
Chris Gratien is a doctoral candidate at Georgetown University researching the social environmental history of the Ottoman Empire and the modern Middle East (see academia.edu)
Episode No. 126
Release Date: 17 October 2013
Location: Nantes, France
Editing and Production: Chris Gratien
Bibliography courtesy of Alma Heckman
Citation: "Jewish Citizens on Exhibit," Alma Heckman and Chris Gratien, Ottoman History Podcast, No. 126 (October 17, 2010)


Cohen, Julia Phillips. Becoming Ottomans: Sephardi Jews and Imperial Citizenship in the Modern Era. New York: Oxford University Press, forthcoming 2013.

Cutler, Irving. The Jews of Chicago: from Shtetl to Suburb. Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 1996.

Fortna, Benjamin. Imperial Classroom: Islam, the State and Education in the Late Ottoman Empire. New York: Oxford University Press, 2002.

Laskier, Michael M. The Alliance Israelite Universelle and the Jewish Communities of Morocco: 1962-1962.  Albany: State University of New York Press, 1983.

Malino, Frances. “L'éducation des femmes.” In Histoire de l'Alliance Israélite Universelle de 1860 à Nos Jours, edited by André Kaspi and Valérie Assan, 263-293. Paris: A. Colin, 2010.   

Penslar, Derek. Zionism and Technocracy: The Engineering of Jewish Settlement in Palestine, 1870-1918. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1991.

Rodrigue, Aron. French Jews, Turkish Jews: The Alliance Israelite Universelle and the Politics of Jewish Schooling in Turkey, 1860-1925. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1990. 

Rodrigue, Aron. "La mission éducative (1860-1939).” In Histoire de l'Alliance Israélite Universelle de 1860 à Nos Jours, edited by André Kaspi and Valérie Assan, 227-261. Paris: A. Colin, 2010.   

Şar, Onur. “Alliance Israélite Universelle Schools within the Existing School Frameworks in the Ottoman Empire.” Masters Thesis at Boğaziçi Univeristy 2010. 

Stein, Sarah Abrevaya. “Deaf American Jewish Culture in Historical Perspective.” American Jewish History Vol. 93, No. 3 (September 2009): 277-305.

Oct 4, 2013

Plague in the Early Modern Mediterranean | Edna Bonhomme

This episode is part of an ongoing series entitled History of Science, Ottoman or Otherwise.
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Edna Bonhomme
Paris, July 2013
Historians have long been wise to disease as a factor in historical events and developments. More recently, scholars have begun to focus on how conceptions and understandings of disease intersect with issues of culture, politics, race, gender, and class. In this episode, Edna Bonhomme discusses some cultural and social history approaches to the topic of disease through the lens of plague in the eighteenth-century Mediterranean, and explains some of the issues relating to disease surrounding Napoleon Bonaparte's invasion of Egypt. 

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Edna Bonhomme is a doctoral candidate in the Department of History at Princeton University studying disease and health in the Mediterranean.
Chris Gratien is a doctoral candidate at Georgetown University researching the social environmental history of the Ottoman Empire and the modern Middle East (see academia.edu)

Episode No. 125
Release date: 4 October 2013
Location: Paris, France
Editing and Production by Chris Gratien
Images and Bibliography courtesy of Edna Bonhomme
Additional thanks to Graham Pitts

Note for the listener: Although this podcast refers to certain primary sources, it is also a synthesis of publicly available information and draws on the following works below, which are also mentioned during the course of the episode. For the purposes of academic citation, we encourage you to consult these works.


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Anonymous. “The Orient.” Ladies Magazine, March 1799.

Bell, David A. The First Total War: Napoleon’s Europe And the Birth of Warfare As We Know It. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co., 2007.

Berthier, Louis-Alexandre. General Berthier’s Narrative of the French Expedition into Syria, 1799 : Together with Letters from General Bonaparte and Sir Wm. Sidney Smith. Tyne & Wear: Worley Publications, 1990.

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Bois, Jean-Pierre. Deux Voyages Au Temps de Louis XVI, 1777-1780: La Mission Du Baron de Tott En Égypte En 1777-1778 et Le Journal de Bord de l’Hermione En 1780. Rennes: Presses Universitaires De Rennes, 1780.

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Camus, Albert. The Plague. Translated by Stuart Gilbert. New York: A.A. Knopf, 1948.

Cole, Juan. Napoleon’s Egypt: Invading the Middle East. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2007.

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Crosby, Alfred W. Ecological Imperialism : the Biological Expansion of Europe, 900-1900. Studies in Environment and History. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1986.

Desgenettes, R. Histoire Médicale de L’armée d’Orient. Vol. 3. éd., augm. d'une table alphabétique. Paris,: Didot, 1835.

———. “Souvenirs D’un Médecin de L’expédition d’Égypte,” 1893. http://catalog.hathitrust.org/api/volumes/oclc/10679989.html.

———. “Souvenirs de La Fin Du XVIIIe Siècle et Du Commencement Du XIXe; Ou, Mémoires de R.D.G,” 1835. http://catalog.hathitrust.org/api/volumes/oclc/19499777.html.

Dols, Michael. The Black Death  in the Middle East. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1977.

Elgood, P.G. Bonaparte’s Adventure in Egypt. London: Oxford University Press, 1936.

Gelbart, Nina Rattner. “The French Revolution as Medical Event: The Journalistic Gaze.” History of European Ideas 10, no. 4 (January 1, 1989): 417–427.

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Gillispie, Charles C. Science and Polity in France at the End of the Old Regime. Princeton: Princeton Unviersity Press, 1980.

Gillispie, Charles Coulston. Science and Polity in France : the Revolutionary and Napoleonic Years. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2004.

Gillispie, Charles Coulston, Frederic Lawrence Holmes, and Noretta Koertge. Complete Dictionary of Scientific Biography. Detroit: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 2008.

Grigsby, Darcy Grimaldo. “Rumor, Contagion, and Colonization in Gross’s Plague-Stricken of Jaffa (1804).” Representations 51, no. Summer 1995 (1995): 1–46.

Hamilton, Alastair, Maurits H. van den Boogert, and Bart Westerweel. The Republic of Letters and the Levant. Leiden: Brill, 2005.

Howard, Martin R. Napoleon’s Doctors: The Medical Services of the Grande Armée. Stroud, England: Spellmount, 2006.

Hutin, Jean-François. La Campagne d’Égypte: Une Affaire de Santé (1798-1801). Paris: Éditions Glyphe, 2011.

Jasanoff, Maya. Edge of Empire: Lives, Culture, and Conquest in the East, 1750-1850. Vintage Series. New York: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 2006.

Jenner, Edward. An Inquiry into the Causes and Effects of the Variolæ Vaccinæ: a Disease Discovered in Some of the Western Counties of England, Particularly Gloucestershire and Known by the Name of the Cow Pox. London: Printed for the Author by Sampson Low,, 1798.

Jewson, N. D. “Medical Knowledge and the Patronage System in 18th Century England.” Sociology 8, no. 3 (September 1, 1974): 369–385.

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Larrey, D. J. Observations on Wounds, and Their Complications by Erysipelas, Gangrene and Tetanus, and on the Principal Diseases and Injuries of the Head, Ear and Eye. Translated by E. F. Rivinus. Philadelphia: Key, Mielke & Biddle, 1832.

Larrey, D. J., and Richard Wilmott Hall. Memoirs of Military Surgery, and Compaigns of the French Armies on the Rhine, in Corsica, Catalonia, Egypt, and Syria, at Boulogne, Ulm, and Austerlitz; in Saxony, Prussia, Poland, Spain, and Austria. From the French of D.J. Larrey. Baltimore,: Joseph Cushing,, 1814.

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Ramsey, Matthew. Professional and Popular Medicine in France 1770-1830: The Social World of Medical Practice. Cambridge Studies in the History of Medicine. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002.

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Raymond, André. Arab Cities in the Ottoman Period: Cairo, Syria, and the Maghreb. Aldershot, England ; Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2002.

———. “French Studies of the Ottoman Empire’s Arab Provinces.” Mediterranean Historical Review 19, no. 1 (2007): 54–72.

Reybaud, Louis, J. J. Marcel, and Xavier. Histoire Scientifique et Militaire de L’expédition Française En Égypte. Paris: A.-J. Dénain et Delamare, 1830.

Riley, James C. The Eighteenth-century Campaign to Avoid Disease. Basingstoke, Hampshire: Macmillan, 1987.

Role, André, and Luc Boulet. Georges Cabanis: Le Médecin de Brumaire. Paris: Editions Fernand Lanore, 1994.

Rosenberg, Charles E. The Cholera Years: The United States in 1832, 1849, and 1866. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1987.

Saint-Hilaire, Étienne Geoffroy. Lettres Écrites d’Égypte à Cuvier, Jussieu, Lacépède, Monge, Desgenettes, Redouté Jeune, Norry, Etc., Aux Professeurs Du Muséum, et à Sa Famille. Paris: Librairie Hachette, 1901.

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Tilley, Helen. Africa as a Living Laboratory : Empire, Development, and the Problem of Scientific Knowledge, 1870-1950. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2011.

Tombs, Robert, and Isabelle Tombs. That Sweet Enemy: Britain and France: The History of a Love-Hate Relationship. Vintage Series. New York: Vintage Books, 2008.

Vess, David M. Medical Revolution in France 1789-1793. Gainesville: A Florida State University Book, 1975.

Volney, C. F. Voyage En Syrie et En Égypte, Pendant Les Années 1783, 1784 et 1785. Vol. 2. éd., rev. et cor. Paris,: Desenne, 1787.

Wear, Andrew. Health and Healing in Early Modern Europe. Aldershot: Ashgates, 1998.

Wilson, Robert Thomas. History of the British Expedition to Egypt to Which Is Subjoined, A Sketch of the Present State of That Country and Its Means of Defence.  Illustrated Maps, and a Portrait of Sir Ralph Abercromby. Philadelphia: Printed by W. Corbet, 1803.


Antoine Jean-Gros, "Bonaparte visitant les pestiférés de Jaffa le 11 mars 1799" (1804)
James Gillray, "French generals retiring on account of their health," (1790)
Source:  Lewis Walpole Library, Yale University