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Ottoman Ulema, Turkish Republic: Agents of Change and Guardians of Tradition Hardcover – March 29, 2011

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Editorial Reviews


"[Ottoman Ulema, Turkish Republic] is the first academic study in English to focus specifically on the ulema of the late Ottoman Empire and the early Republic of Turkey . . . Amit Bein's meticulous study is without doubt an important contribution to the historiography of the late Ottoman Empire and the early Republic that really fills a gap in our knowledge of the period."—Erik-Jan Zürcher, Bulletin of the School of Oriental & African Studies

"Ottoman Ulema, Turkish Republic restores religious spokesmen and their supporters to the multiple roles they played in the first half of the 20th century. More importantly, Bein makes it clear that these early debates were responsible for the fault lines that underlie present-day Turkey's religious politics and posturing."—Madeline C. Zilfi, Middle East Journal

"[T]his recent book by Amit Bein is a welcome and a much needed contribution to the literature on the Turkish ulema and to the literature on religion in modern Turkey in general . . . This book conveys a nuanced understanding of who the Turkish ulema were and how they navigated the empire-to-republic transition . . . Bein's study is fine-grained and buttressed by ample archival research. It opens up new vistas on Turkish history and enriches the study of the modern ulema."—Brett Wilson, American Journal of Islamic Social Sciences

"The more difficult task confronting historians of the transition from Ottoman Empire to Turkish Republic has been to understand the deeper social, cultural, and political effects of the various changes enacted by the new regime. Amit Bein's book represents an important effort in this direction, not least because he has taken up one of the central issues in this transition. . . An important contribution to our understanding of the late Ottoman and early Turkish Republican history."—Benjamin C. Fortina, American Historical Review

"Bein's nuanced unfolding of opinions, events, and political maneuvers is an effective demonstration of the unexpected twists and turns that marked the political circumstances . . . [T]his book is a timely addition to the historiography of the modern Middle East, providing scholars and students of Ottoman and Turkish history with a worthwhile read."—Avi Rubin, International Journal of Middle East Studies

About the Author

Amit Bein is Assistant Professor of History at Clemson University. His dissertation won the Bayard and Cleveland E. Dodge Memorial Prize for Best Dissertation in Near Eastern Studies at Princeton. 

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