Jul 28, 2015

Ottomanism with a Greek Face

with Vangelis Kechriotis

hosted by Nir Shafir and Polina Ivanova

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At the turn of the twentieth century, Turkish-speaking Greek intellectuals of Cappadocian origin found themselves between mutually opposed Turkish and Greek nationalist ideologies. Their unique cultural background and their belief in the promises of the Young Turk Revolution allowed them to develop an alternative brand of Greek identity, one that combined cultural Hellenism with political loyalty to the Ottoman State. But their hopes never came true, and as such, they have been written out of history and forgotten. In this episode, we talk to Vangelis Kechriotis about his latest research on Cappadocian Christians and other issues relating to late Ottoman Greek identity, exploring the fascinating careers and difficult political choices of those caught between competing nationalist discourses.

Jul 25, 2015

Islamic Hospitals in Medieval Egypt and the Levant

with Ahmed Ragab
hosted by Nir Shafir
This episode is part of an ongoing series entitled History of Science, Ottoman or Otherwise.
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From Baghdad to Cairo to Edirne, hospitals were major and integral components of medieval and early modern Islamic cities. But what role did they play in these cities and their societies? Were they sites for the development of medical knowledge? In this podcast, Professor Ahmed Ragab examines the history and significance of hospitals in Mamluk Egypt and Syria. He argues that we must view these medieval hospitals as charitable institutions that provided needed services and drugs to the urban poor, rather than the early progenitors of our modern medical institutions. Over the course of the interview we explore how these hospitals functioned as charitable institutions, what type of medical theories and treatments they employed, why medieval rulers regarded them as so important, and why their importance decreased after the sixteenth century.

Jul 4, 2015

The Sociopolitical World of Ottoman Hamams

with Nina Ergin

hosted by Chris Gratien

Bathhouses or hamams are a well-known feature of the Ottoman city typically associated with leisure. However, as our guest Nina Ergin explains, the history of hamams also provides a window onto many socioeconomic and political issues in the Ottoman Empire. In this episode, we discuss her research regarding the hamams of Istanbul during the mid-eighteenth century, what they tell us about the political economy and demographic makeup of the Ottoman capital, and how mapping hamams onto the landscape of Ottoman Istanbul can raise new questions about the social history of the city.