Armenian Photography in Ottoman Anatolia
hosted by Zoe Griffith
Interest in Ottoman photography has tended to focus on the orientalist gaze or the view from the imperial center. In this episode, Armen T. Marsoobian offers us the unique lens of the Dildilian family of Armenian photographers in provincial Anatolia. Around the turn of the twentieth century, the Dildilians worked to memorialize portraits of fragmenting families and to document everyday scenes in provincial cities such as Sivas, Samsun, and Merzifon. Marsoobian, himself a descendant of the Dildilians, has woven together the family's remarkable photographic archive along with their memoirs and oral histories, to describe how through ingenuity and professional connections, the family and with them much of their art survived the genocide in 1915-16.
This episode is part of an ongoing series entitled "The Visual Past."
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|Armen T. Marsoobian is Professor and Chair of Philosophy at Southern Connecticut State University and editor of the journal Metaphilosophy. In addition to his numerous publications in American philosophy, aesthetics, and genocide studies, he is the author of Fragments of a Lost Homeland: Remembering Armenia (IB Taurus, 2015), and has organized numerous exhibitions of the Ottoman-era photography of the Dildilian family in Anatolia.|
|Zoe Griffith is a doctoral candidate in the Department of History at Brown University. Her work focuses on political economy and governance in Egypt and the Ottoman Mediterranean. Zoe is a co-curator of the Ottoman History Podcast series entitled "Continuity and Transformation in Islamic Law."|
Episode No. 255
Release Date: 4 August 2016
Recording Location: Koç RCAC, Istanbul
Editing and production by Chris Gratien
Sound excerpts: Harmandali - Recep Efendi, Cemal Efendi
Special thanks to Sato Moughalian for the use of "Al Ayloughs (Komitas)" and "Keler Tsoler (Komitas)" (Find on CD Baby | iTunes)
Images and captions courtesy of Armen Marsoobian
courtesy of Armen T. Marsoobian
|A staged photograph with members of the Dildilian household demonstrating different aspects of textile production in Marsovan, including weaving, carding, spinning, and dyeing in the studio, c. 1910.|
|Interior of Dildilian Brothers photo studio in Samsun. Governor’s portrait hanging on the left. Camera hidden behind black cloth cover, c. 1920.|
|“Procession in celebration of the opening of the opening of parliament in Merzifon (Marsovan), 17 Dec. 1908.” Dildilian Brothers postcard.|
|Death portrait of the sister (unnamed) of the Encababian Brothers Photographers of Sivas (Sebastia), c. 1903. Photo courtesy of Project SAVE Armenian Photograph Archive.|
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