Grants Program

Research Grantees 2013-2014

Dissertation Writing Grant Awardees
Danielle van Dobben Schoon
School of Anthropology and School of Middle Eastern and North African Studies (MENAS), University of Arizona

The ITS Dissertation Writing Grant will help me achieve the successful publication of several academic articles and timely completion of my dissertation, "Becoming Roma: Gypsy Identity and Civic Engagement in Turkey." Economic and political shifts in Turkey resulting from ongoing liberalizing reforms are producing major social changes, observable in the pluralization of cultural identities, urban development, and the proliferation of non-governmental organizations. My research analyzes the effects of these processes on identity and citizenship for Turkey's Roma (Gypsies). While the changes resulting from liberalization are typically posed as either positive or negative, the advantages and disadvantages for the Roma are simultaneously produced and mutually constitutive. While they are being integrated into the rights and responsibilities of citizenship, they are also facing the dissolution of their communities, traditional occupations, and cultural life. These contradictions and ambiguities have broad implications as Turkey is increasingly lauded as a model for democracy in the Middle East.
Sarah-Neel Smith
The Department of Art History, University of California, Los Angeles

Sarah-Neel Smith is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Art History at the University of California, Los Angeles. Her research focuses on the intersection of art and politics in Turkey in the post-war period - specifically, the ways that local art spaces and art criticism dovetailed with international discourses about democracy after WWII. She writes regularly for Bidoun at Frieze.
Timur Hammond
Department of Geography, University of California Los Angeles

My research focuses on the İstanbul neighborhood of Eyüp and explores various processes through which Eyüp has been fashioned into a place rich in social, cultural, and religious meaning. Looking particularly at the relationship between people and the material environments in which they live, I follow the institutions, individuals, and ideas who come together to make Eyüp meaningful. This Dissertation Writing Grant from the Institute of Turkish Studies will provide important support for me as I begin the process of revising my fieldwork and archival research.
Brian Miller
Department of History, University of Iowa

Brian JK Miller is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of History at the University of Iowa. In 2013, Brian JK Miller completed archival and anthropological field work in Turkey (15 months) and Germany (5 months) through the support of the Institute for International Education (IIE), the Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst (DAAD), and the University of Iowa. With funding from the Institute of Turkish Studies, he is currently writing his dissertation entitled "Reshaping the Turkish Nation-State: Migrant Communities in Western Europe and Return Migration, 1959-1985." His research investigates how economic migrants, whether temporarily or permanently residing outside of Turkey, had a dramatic influence on Turkish identity, identity politics and development strategies of the Turkish State in the 1960s-1980s. His work also investigates how Cold War-era international advisory policies ultimately prompted the development of unintended transnational communities that, over time, gained increasing social and cultural capital in both sending and receiving societies.
Murat Yıldız
Department of History, University of California Los Angeles

Murat Yıldız is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of History at UCLA. His dissertation, "Strengthening, Training, and Preparing the Sons of the Nation(s): Physical Culture in Late Ottoman İstanbul," investigates a shared physical culture among late Ottoman İstanbul's diverse ethno-religious groups. It presents a multilingual and cross-cultural analysis of the coeval development of civic and ethno-religious (Muslim, Christian, and Jewish) bonds in the late Ottoman Empire. The Dissertation Writing Grant from the Institute of Turkish Studies will enable him to concentrate on completing his dissertation.
Dale Stahl
Middle East History, Columbia University

Dale Stahl is a Ph.D. candidate in Middle East history at Columbia University. His research focuses on the connections between environmental change and governance in the modern era. At present, he is working on an environmental history of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers in the twentieth century. With the support of the Institute of Turkish Studies, he will complete the writing of this dissertation, entitled "The Two Rivers: Water, Development and Politics in the Tigris-Euphrates Basin, 1920-1975," and defend in April 2014.

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Sabbatical Grant Awardees
Snjezana Buzov
Associate Professor, Department of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures, Ohio State University

During the academic year 2013/14 I plan to complete research, and write the first draft of the book manuscript titled "The World of Ottoman Miscellani Mecmuas." My research will include the Gazi Husrev Beg Library in Sarajevo (August 2013), Suleymaniye, Köprülü and University of İstanbul libraries in the first half of my sabbatical. I will spend the second half of my sabbatical completing my research in the Beyazit Ilk Halk Library in Amasya and Yazma ve Eski Basma Eserler Library in Bursa. With the exception of a short stay in Sarajevo (Bosnia & Herzegovina) at the beginning of my sabbatical leave, I will spend the academic year of 2013/14 and a part of the summer of 2014 working on my project in Turkey.
Kent F. Schull
Assistant Professor of Ottoman and Modern Middle East History, SUNY Binghamton

Building off his first book on Ottoman prisons, Kent Schull's new project investigates the transformation of criminal justice through the lens of Islamic criminal law and practice during the late Ottoman Empire (1800-1922). During this period administrators comprehensively transformed criminal justice to include the creation of the Imperial Ottoman Penal Code, new criminal courts (nizamiye), and new centralized policing and prison institutions. This was not a process of Westernization, but the selective adoption and adaptation of European penal codes, legal practices, and modern methods of governance to a specific Ottoman Islamic legal context. It fundamentally transformed how the Ottoman criminal legal system functioned through the codification, centralization, rationalization and standardization of Islamic criminal law and practice, thus laying the ground work for legal practice in the Ottoman successor states of the contemporary Middle East. He is utilizing the ITS Sabbatical Grant to conduct research in archives and libraries in Turkey, the U.S., and Britain and to continue writing the manuscript.

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