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Syrian Lands During the Great War: Readjustment of the Ottoman State Under Cemal Pasha's Governorate

March 16, 2015 from 12:15pm-2:00pm EST
CCAS Boardroom (ICC 241), Georgetown University, Washington, DC
Speaker: Dr. M. Talha Çiçek, Istanbul Medeniyet University


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During the First World War, the Syrian provinces underwent great transformations under the rule of Cemal Pasha. He attempted to establish direct control over the Syrian lands and thereby reaffirm Ottoman authority there through various policies of control, including the abolishment of local intermediaries. Elaborating on these Ottoman policies of control, this presentation will asses Cemal Pasha's policies toward different groups in Syrian society, including Arabists, Zionists, Christian clergymen and Armenian immigrants. Then, the presentation will go on Pasha's educational activities, the conscription of Syrians, both Muslim and Christian, and the reconstruction of the major Syrian cities, assessing how these policies contributed to his attempt to create ideal Ottoman citizens.

M. Talha Çiçek is an assistant professor at Istanbul Medeniyet University. Studied Political Science at Sakarya University, Turkey and received his Ph.D. from Sabanci University, Turkey. He has been a visiting researcher at Free University of Berlin (2009-2010) and studied Arabic in Kuwait University (2005-2006). He conducted researches in the Ottoman, Austrian, German, British, French and American archives on the history of the Arab provinces under the Ottoman rule during the Ottoman period of modernization. His research interests include; History of the Modern Middle East, Islamic History, Late Ottoman History and Historiography, Socio-Political History of Ottoman Syria and Arabia, Arab Tribes under the Ottoman Rule, Modern Turkish History, and Comparative History of Empire. His articles appeared in Die Welt des Islams, Tarih ve Toplum and Divan Journals. His book on Cemal Pasha's governorate in Syria has been published by Routledge in February 2014 with the title War and State Formation in Syria: Cemal Pasha's Governorate during World War I.

A Light Lunch will be served.

RSVP: talhacicek.eventbrite.com