Lecture Notes - Modern Middle East January 24 THE OTTOMAN...

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Modern Middle EastJanuary 24THEOTTOMANHERITAGEParticularly relevant to the current polemical debates about the “Clash of Civilizations”“East and West” are reductionism categories that confuse, rather than illuminate, the realities of the Middle EastEASTVS. WESTCOULDBEANINCOHERENTDISTINCTIONEspecially since the geographic east could contain seemingly European features (Byzantine, Christianity, Hellenic Civilization, law and citizenship, etc.)Similarly the category west refers to items associated with Islam and the Eastoe.g. – Andalusian symbiotic culture that is both Western and Islamic – evokes pluralism, co-existence and liberalism among various culturesA MEDITERRANEANCULTURECircumvent this binary dilemma by thinking of Ottoman culture as a Mediterranean culture that encompasses both “East” and “West”Mediterraneanism is an implicit cultural domain (people don’t normally subscribe to it consciously but belong to it as a matter of externally observable attributes)Those include small peasant cultures, cropping arrangements, cuisine, folk traditions, ‘the mountain against the sea’; and basic social organization features that unite Ottoman societies with southern European culturesTHEREPUBLICOFCOUSINSRefers to certain social features that unite North Africa, Levantine and southern European social organization; those include the preference in marriage given to the first cousins; this is probably related to the turn in issues of property and defensive solidarity*** stranger– someone who has no blood-relation ***UNITEDANDDIVISIVEUnite societies that are diverse in religions through these traditions (cuisine, urban culture, architecture, peasant social organization, etc.) e.g. Islam and JewsDivide societies united in religion and language (e.g. Syria from Iraq)THEMIDDLEEASTANDTHEMODERNITYQUESTIONModernity is not modernismGelvin suggests that Middle East modernity is associated with two global trends:oEmergence of world economic system – trade and mobility (begins in 16thcent.)oEmergence of the nation states in the 18th/19thcenturiesOTTOMANMODERNITYANDEUROPEThe idea of rupture with the past is an essential component of modernityThe introduction of secular nationalismNotions of citizens vs. subjectsThe associated idea of right (entitlement) as opposed to privilegeThe replacement of autarky with market determination
January 29The Tanzimat of 1839: Ushering Ottoman and Middle Eastern ModernityHATTISERIFGULHAMTanzimat Reforms were signed by Sultan Abdulmecid ushering a period of Organizational ReformsTanzimat were aimed at reorganizing administrative, fiscal, and military reforms to allow Ottoman Empire to European encirclementThey were also aimed at ending era of capitulations by which immense privileges were given to European consular officials and trading postsMAINPROVISIONSOFHATTISERIFGULHAM

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