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Grant number: FT-229991-15

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Lale Can
City College of New York (New York, NY 10016-4309)

Central Asians and the Politics of Pilgrimage in the Ottoman Empire, 1869-1914

Summer research and writing on History, Near and Middle Eastern and Russian.

Spiritual Citizens is a study of Central Asian pilgrimage to Ottoman Mecca in the late 19th-early 20th centuries that tells the story of how transimperial travel shaped individual pilgrimage trajectories and Ottoman citizenship reform. It examines pilgrimage in the context of Russo-Ottoman contestations over sovereignty and extraterritorial rights, and considers what it meant to be a foreign Muslim. By examining the spiritual and political dimensions of sacred travel and patronage, it highlights the salience of the Islamic caliphate into the modern era. The book also traces the development of competing conceptions of Ottoman nationality that reveal important tensions in the state's simultaneous promotion of pan-Islam and secular legal reform. It argues that contending with the role of religious legitimacy and diverse local praxis is crucial to understanding the path from subjecthood to citizenship in multiconfessional empires.

Project fields:
History, Other; Near and Middle Eastern History; Russian History

Summer Stipends

Research Programs

Total amounts:
$6,000 (approved)
$6,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
6/1/2015 – 7/31/2015