Brown University shieldBrown University

Invisible Cities: Istanbul of the 19th Century through the Lens of Ottoman Census Registers

March 13, 2023

The Program in Modern Greek Studies in conjunction with the Center for Middle East Studies and the Department of History present a lecture by Christine Philliou of UC Berkeley titled, “Invisible Cities:  Istanbul of the 19th Century through the Lens of Ottoman Census Registers”. 

What lay beneath the “multicultural” facade of urban life in 19th-century Istanbul? While the concepts of tolerance and diversity are surely seductive in our historical moment today, when we scratch the surface we find that social realities were far more complex. By examining the “internal” and “external” histories of micro-level communities in the Ottoman capital, and using Ottoman census registers that documented the Greek Orthodox (Rum) residents, the goal is to think differently about the historical experiences of non-Muslims in an Islamicate society as the age of nationalism was unfolding. The talk will draw materials from the ongoing, collaborative Digital Humanities project,