The Global and the Local

Read Howard’s Chapter 5, The Global and the Local, 1688-1785. You should have acquired your own copy by now so I will not be uploading a .pdf version.

Additionally, read the provided supplemental readings. Given that the theme of Howard’s chapter belies the interconnected and global nature of the interaction between the Ottoman Empire and various European powers, start with Çırakman’s From Tyranny to Despotism… and pay close attention to how she outlines the evolution of the European presentation of the Ottoman Empire. Note: Do not take the European descriptions as 100 percent true to what was happening. What motivations might these writers have had, for instance?

Then move on to Yaycıoğlu’s Chapter 1 from Partners of the Empire… It goes a bit beyond the scope of this week, as laid out by Howard’s organization but is an insightful and thorough piece of scholarship. It lays out, in detail, the nitty-gritty details of the 18th century—ranging from territorial losses as well as the organization of provincial territory to the domestic and foreign powers that shaped the Ottoman Empire.

Finally, we’ll conclude with a change of pace by looking at Landweber’s chapter about the conversion of a French military man and his role in the Ottoman bureaucracy. The underlying theme throughout this week is a connection between Ottoman history and World history—that the two are not separate nor distinct from one another.

Discussion prompt:
When we look at world history, it is often presented from Eurocentric point of view. That is, European polities are foregrounded at the expense of other, non-European political entities in terms of importance. First, why do you think this is the case? Next, how does Ottoman history fit into this schema? How did late 16th and 17th century European travelers/writers frame the Ottomans? What were some key motifs, and why do you think that this was the case? Finally, the theme of Howard’s chapter five is that the imprint of broader global forces—trade, migration, borders, etc.—can be seen throughout the various localities within the Ottoman Empire. What were some of these “global” influences that can be seen in the Ottoman Empire? And what Ottoman influences can we see outside of the Ottoman Empire?

What was the outcome of the war with Russia? What major factors contributed to that outcome, and what were its major (e.g., commercial, territorial) repercussions, both internally and internationally?

Sample Solution