Early Modern Istanbul: Urban Practices and Representations

History/History of Art and Architecture/Middle Eastern Studies/Urban Studies

The project is an integrative and multidisciplinary inquiry that seeks to understand early modern conceptualizations and imaginations of the city in the early modern world, with a particular focus on Ottoman Istanbul. It involves the study of urban cartography, history, poetry, geography, and hagiographical texts, as well as archival material in understanding the ways cities have been imagined and represented. I would benefit from work with a research partner, both in terms of assistance in collecting, scanning, and reading relevant material, and in starting and continuing a dialogue on aspects of the project, discussing and developing some of its ideas.

The research partner should have a good command of Turkish and should be interested in surveying and/or reading texts and documents from the Ottoman period (16th and 17th centuries, transliterated into the Latin script). She or he would also be surveying modern historical writing on the city and representations of urban spaces and urban life across genres. The applicant may be a history or a history of art and architecture major, or a student with interest in the period and the topic. Participating in the project, the student would gain experience in reading primary sources that pertain to urban and architectural history, and develop research skills in historical work.