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malte fuhrmann

leıbnız-zentrum moderner orıent

Malte Fuhrmann is a research fellow at the Leibniz-Zentrum Moderner Orient (ZMO). Having spent many years doing research and teaching in Istanbul, he is the author of Imagining a German Orient: Two German Colonies in the Ottoman Empire 1851–1918 (2006, in German), Constantinople - Istanbul: Sultans and Rebels (2019, in German) and coeditor of The City in the Ottoman Empire: Migration and the Making of Urban Modernity (2011) with Ulrike Freitag, Nora Lafi, and Florian Riedler."

Port Cities of the Eastern Mediterranean: Urban Culture in the Late Ottoman Empire

This study investigates vital changes in the histories of space, consumption, and identities in the port cities of Smyrna, Constantinople, and Salonica (Izmir, Istanbul, and Thessaloniki) in the nineteenth and early twentieth century. It aims to create a more stringent narrative of what urban culture meant and what role the impact of “Europe” played in pre-World War I port cities. What people in Smyrna, Salonica, or Constantinople considered European often followed ostensible forms from elsewhere on the continent, but these forms became suffused with meanings the local residents projected onto them.

I investigate these interpretations of Europeanness through a focus on changes in the urban texture, such as the construction of modern quays and representative buildings; leisure practices such as balls, operas, and beer drinking; class, gender, and identity discourses; as well as campaigns targeting foreign prostitutes or vagabonds.