Approaching Ottoman History: An Introduction to the Sources by Suraiya Faroqhi
Cambridge University Press | January 2000 | ISBN: 0521661684 | PDF | 272 pages | 5.1 MB
In a state-of-the art introduction to Ottoman history, Suraiya Faroqhi explores the documentary sources and explains how to interpret them to students in the field and in related disciplines. By considering both archival and narrative sources, she demonstrates why they were prepared, encouraging her readers to adopt a critical approach to their findings. While the book is essentially a guide to a complex discipline for initiates into the field, the experienced Ottomanist will find much that is original and provocative in its sophisticated interpretation.
Suraiya Faroqhi is one of the most important economic and social historians of the pre-modern Ottoman empire writing today. Her scholarly contribution to the field has been prodigious. Her latest book, Approaching Ottoman History: An Introduction to the Sources, represents a summation of that scholarship, an introduction to the state-of-the-art in Ottoman history, or as the author herself describes it, "a sharing" of her own fascination with the field. In a compelling and lucid exploration of the ways that primary and secondary sources can be used to interpret history, the author reaches out to students and researchers in the field and in related disciplines to help familiarise them with these documents. By considering both archival and narrative sources, she explains to what ends they were prepared, encouraging her readers to adopt a critical approach to their findings, and disabusing them of the notion that everything recorded in official documents is necessarily accurate or even true. Her critique of the handbook treatments of Ottoman history, quite often the sources students rely on most frequently during their undergraduate years, provides insights into the broader historical context. While the book is essentially a guide to a rich and complex discipline for those about to embark upon their research, the experienced Ottomanist can expect to find much that is new and provocative in this candid and sophisticated interpretation of the field.
Suraiya Faroqhi is Professor of Ottoman Studies in the Department of Near Eastern Studies at Ludwig Maximilians Universitat in Munich. Her many publications include Pilgrims and Sultans (1994) and Kultur and Alltag im Osmanischen Reich (1995). She is a contributor to Halil Inalcik (with Donald Quataert), An Economic and Social History of the Ottoman Empire, 1300–1914 (1994).
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