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Karamursel, Ceyda (2023) 'Relics of an Unwanted Past: Slavery, Polygamy, and the Harem at the End of the Ottoman Empire.' Gender and History. (Forthcoming)

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This article traces the ways in which the newly inaugurated Turkish Republic dealt with such institutional and legal ‘relics’ as the imperial harem, slavery and polygamy, that it inherited from its immediate, largely undesirable imperial past, condemned retrospectively as ‘backward’, but nevertheless continued to exist for years to come. Focusing on the immediate aftermath of the abolition of the Caliphate and the exile of the Ottoman dynasty, it examines a set of legal, governmental and discursive weapons that the new regime deployed – from expropriation and disposal of dynastic property to exoticisation and sexualisation of court practices – to severe the imperial harem and its erstwhile powerful actors from the political, social and cultural contexts they had long been closely linked with. It argues that while such measures affected a relatively small number of individuals, particularly women, they had significant implications for the republican government's reconceptualisation of citizenship and state belonging for the wider public.

Item Type: Journal Article
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > School of History, Religions & Philosophies > Department of History
ISSN: 09535233
Copyright Statement: This is the version of the article accepted for publication in Gender and History published by Wiley. Re-use is subject to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 25 Oct 2023 16:07

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