ONLINEIn Search of Late Ottoman Sephardi Women’s Lives

November 22, 2021 Free
Engraving of Bosphorus, General view, Istanbul,  Turkey, Asian side and European side. Illustration from "Book of  Illustrations of Constantinople", dated 1838
(Book of Illustrations of Constantinople/iStock)

Although the field of Jewish women’s and gender history has expanded significantly in recent decades, there is still much we don’t know about the lives of Ottoman Jewish women at the dawn of the modern era. Among the questions that remain are those surrounding the extent of Ottoman Jewish women’s autonomy—whether, when and in which contexts they had the space to forge their own paths in life, to marry for love, to pursue their own professional interests or achieve financial independence. This talk will pursue a few such cases, offering selected portraits of little-known late Ottoman Sephardi women.

Julia Phillips Cohen is an associate professor in the Department of History and the Program in Jewish Studies at Vanderbilt University. She is the author of two books: “Becoming Ottomans: Sephardi Jews and Imperial Citizenship in the Modern Era” (New York: Oxford University Press, 2014) and—together with Sarah Abrevaya Stein—”Sephardi Lives: A Documentary History, 1700-1950″ (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2014). She has published articles in a range of venues, including the American Historical Review, International Journal of Middle East Studies, Jewish Social Studies, Jewish Quarterly Review and AJS and, most recently, in the volume “Jews, Liberalism, Antisemitism: A Global History,” edited by Abigail Green and Simon Levis Sullam.

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Monday, November 22, 2021, 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm

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