Download Bandits and Bureaucrats: The Ottoman Route to State by Karen Barkey PDF

By Karen Barkey

Why did the most problem to the Ottoman country come now not in peasant or elite rebellions, yet in endemic banditry? Karen Barkey exhibits how Turkish techniques of incorporating peasants and rotating elites saved either teams depending on the kingdom, not able and unwilling to insurgent. Bandits, previously mercenary squaddies, weren't drawn to uprising yet focused on attempting to achieve kingdom assets, extra as rogue consumers than as primitive rebels. The state's skill to manage and manage bandits - via offers, deals, and patronage - indicates imperial energy instead of weak point, she continues. Bandits and Bureaucrats information, in a wealthy, archivally dependent research, state-society kinfolk within the Ottoman Empire throughout the 16th and 17th centuries. Exploring present eurocentric theories of kingdom development, the writer illuminates a interval as a rule mischaracterized as one during which the kingdom declined in energy. Outlining the approaches of imperial rule, Barkey relates the state's political and army associations to their social foundations. She compares the Ottoman path with kingdom centralization within the chinese language and Russian empires, and contrasts reports of uprising in France throughout the similar interval. Bandits and Bureaucrats hence develops a theoretical interpretation of imperial nation centralization, via incorporation and bargaining with social teams, and while enriches our knowing of the dynamics of Ottoman heritage.

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While Ottoman history in the past few decades was often an arcane endeavour of little interest to anybody but its practitioners, the debate on world systems theory has made it much easier for Ottomanists to enter a broader historical discussion. 6 DE SI GNING RE S EA RCH I N OT TOM A N H IST ORY: SOM E PR EL I MI NAR Y RE F L EC T IONS As has become apparent from the preceding paragraphs, working as an historian implies questioning our own motives. This is easier said than done, for usually we need a certain distance before motivations, our own or those of our predecessors, will become visible to us.

Yet in spite of an abundance of source material, it would seem that Anatolia constitutes one of the former Ottoman provinces most neglected by historians, and I hope to contribute toward correcting this imbalance. Moreover there exists a flourishing secondary literature on the former Arab, Greek, Serbian, Bosnian and Bulgarian provinces of the Ottoman Empire in the languages of the relevant modern nations. Unfortunately I do not read any of these, and my discussion remains confined to works in Ottoman and modern Turkish, English, French and German.

Other more or less hostile observers will prefer to speak of fashion changes, thereby assimilating paradigm changes to the ‘frivolous’ occupations of ladies or young men with money to spend. But now that the study of fashion has revealed cultural changes by no means unworthy of serious study, this objection appears in a different perspective (Micklewright, 1990). Those historians who work in a more or less problem-oriented style, will build on the document-oriented studies already available. The scholar studying Ottoman commerce and urban life, introduced a few pages ago, will attempt to interpret the documents at his/her disposal in the light of broader visions, such as those introduced by Fernand Braudel with his 40 APP R OAC HI N G OTT OM AN H I S TORY studies on the Mediterranean and the history of merchant capitalism (Braudel, 1966, 1979).

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