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“Timely . . . brilliant . . . hugely enjoyable, magnificently researched and deeply absorbing.”—Jason Goodwin, New York Times Book Review At midnight, December 31, 1925, citizens of the newly proclaimed Turkish Republic celebrated the New Year. For the first time ever, they had agreed to use a nationally unified calendar and clock. Yet in Istanbul—an ancient crossroads and Turkey's largest city—people were looking toward an uncertain future. Never purely Turkish, Istanbul was home to generations of Greeks, Armenians, and Jews, as well as Muslims. It welcomed White Russian nobles ousted by the Russian Revolution, Bolshevik assassins on the trail of the exiled Leon Trotsky, German professors, British diplomats, and American entrepreneurs—a multicultural panoply of performers and poets, do-gooders and ne’er-do-wells. During the Second World War, thousands of Jews fleeing occupied Europe found passage through Istanbul, some with the help of the future Pope John XXIII. At the Pera Palace, Istanbul's most luxurious hotel, so many spies mingled in the lobby that the manager posted a sign asking them to relinquish their seats to paying guests. In beguiling prose and rich character portraits, Charles King brings to life a remarkable era when a storied city stumbled into the modern world and reshaped the meaning of cosmopolitanism.
Timely . . . brilliant . . . hugely enjoyable, magnificently researched and deeply absorbing. Jason Goodwin, New York Times Book Review"
Brings to life a remarkable era after the 1925 establishment of the Turkish Republic, when the storied city of Istanbul stumbled into the modern world and reshaped the meaning of cosmopolitanism via its ethnically diverse population and importance in the key historical events and cultural movements of the early 20th century. 25,000 first printing.
For more than two millennia Istanbul has stood at the crossroads of the world, perched at the very tip of Europe, gazing across at the shores of Asia. The history of this city—known as Byzantium, then Constantinople, now Istanbul—is at once glorious, outsized, and astounding. Founded by the Greeks, its location blessed it as a center for trade but also made it a target of every empire in history, from Alexander the Great and his Macedonian Empire, to the Romans and later the Ottomans. At its most spectacular, Istanbul was re-founded by Emperor Constantine I as New Rome, the capital of the eastern Roman Empire. He dramatically expanded the city, filling it with artistic treasures, and adorning the streets with opulent palaces. Constantine built new walls around it all—walls that were truly impregnable and preserved power, wealth, and withstood any aggressor—walls that still stand for tourists to visit. From its ancient past to the present, we meet the city through its ordinary citizens—the Jews, Muslims, Italians, Greeks, and Russians who used the famous baths and walked the bazaars, and the rulers who built it up and then destroyed it, including Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the man who christened the city "Istanbul" in 1930. Thomas Madden's entertaining narrative brings to life the city we see today, including the rich splendor of the churches and monasteries that spread throughout the city. Istanbul draws on a lifetime of study and the latest scholarship, transporting readers to a city of unparalleled importance and majesty that holds the key to understanding modern civilization. In the words of Napoleon Bonaparte, "If the Earth were a single state, Istanbul would be its capital."
Born in London to a Turkish mother and British father, Alev Scott moved to Istanbul to discover what it means to be Turkish in a country going through rapid political and social change, with an extraordinary past still linked to Mustafa Kemal Ataturk and an ever more surprising present under the leadership of Recep Tayyip Erdogan. From the European buzz of modern-day Constantinople to the Arabic-speaking towns of the south-east, Turkish Awakening investigates mass migration, urbanisation and economics in a country moving swiftly towards a new position on the world stage. This is the story of discovering a complex country from the outside-in, a candid account of overturned preconceptions and fresh understanding. Relating wide-ranging interviews and colourful personal experience, the author charts the evolving course of a country bursting with surprises - none more dramatic than the unexpected political protests of 2013 in Taksim Square, which have brought to light the emerging demands of a newly awakened Turkish people. Mass migration, urbanisation and a growing awareness of human rights have changed the social, economic and physical landscapes of a powerful country, and the 2013 protests were just one indication of the changes afoot in today's Turkey. Threatened as it is by recent developments in Syria and Iraq and the approaching danger of ISIS. Encompassing topics as varied as Aegean camel wrestling, transgender prostitution, politicised soap operas and riot tourism, this is a revelatory, at times humorous, at times moving, portrait of a country which is coming of age.
Why do some violent conflicts endure across the centuries, while others become dimly remembered ancient struggles among forgotten peoples? Is nationalism really the powerful force that it appeared to be in the 1990s? This wide-ranging work examines the conceptual intersection of nationalist ideology, social violence, and the political transformation of Europe and Eurasia over the last two decades. The end of communism seemed to usher in a period of radical change-an era of "extreme politics" that pitted nations, ethnic groups, and violent entrepreneurs against one another, from the wars in the Balkans and Caucasus to the apparent upsurge in nationalist mobilization throughout the region. But the last twenty years have also illustrated the incredible diversity of political life after the end of one-party rule. Extreme Politics engages with themes from the micropolitics of social violence, to the history of nationalism studies, to the nature of demographic change in Eurasia. Published twenty years since the collapse of communism, Extreme Politics charts the end of "Eastern Europe" as a place and chronicles the ongoing revolution in the scholarly study of the post-communist world.
Evliya Celebi was the 17th century's most diligent, adventurous, and honest recorder, whose puckish wit and humor are laced throughout his ten-volume masterpiece. This brand new translation brings Evliya sparklingly back to life. "This superb selection from the 'Seyahatname' introduces Evliya Celebi, who witnessed history, recorded ethnological facts scrupulously, and allowed his mind to range freely into the realism of the fabulous providing us with an insider's depiction of the Ottoman worldview."-Henry Glassie, Professor Emeritus of Turkish Studies at Indiana University. "Celebi's writings provide a fascinating and unmatched picture of his world, and this volume finally makes his journeys available to an English-speaking audience."-Choice

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