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Products for grant FA-58438-15

FA-58438-15
Ottoman Public Ceremonies, 1520-1566
Ibrahim Sahin, Indiana University, Bloomington

Grant details: https://securegrants.neh.gov/publicquery/main.aspx?f=1&gn=FA-58438-15

“From Pomp and Circumstance to Sheer Fun: Entertainments at an Ottoman Circumcision Ceremony (1530)” (Conference Paper/Presentation)
Title: “From Pomp and Circumstance to Sheer Fun: Entertainments at an Ottoman Circumcision Ceremony (1530)”
Author: Kaya Sahin
Abstract: In the summer of 1530, the empire’s elite and the inhabitants of Constantinople gathered at the Hippodrome for the circumcision of Sultan Süleyman’s sons Mehmed, Mustafa, and Selim. The celebrations, which lasted for twenty days, included a wide array of activities that extended from the highly formal (such as the ritual kissing of the sultan’s hand by the members of the elite) to the carnivalesque (such as the plunder of large quantities of food by the commoners under the eyes of the sultan). The organizers of the event, who were the close collaborators of the sultan, sought to offer different types of entertainment that were tailored to the identities and expectations of various participants. Testimonies by contemporary Ottoman and Venetian observers provide information about these different entertainments, as well as the participants’ reactions. The provision of entertainment was a kind of gift on the part of the sultan; at the same time, entertainment was construed as a group activity, through which several individuals and communities contributed to the celebrations. Particular forms of entertainment were seen as befitting specific groups; for instance, there was a class element, which manifested itself in the stark difference between refined and popular entertainments. Laughter, however, often transgressed these boundaries and brought together Ottoman and Venetian, bureaucrat and diplomat, and ship captain and merchant in their reactions to sundry spectacles. In my presentation, I will discuss the social and cultural scale across which different types of entertainment were constructed, adopted, and received/interpreted.
Date: 06/30/2016
Secondary URL: http://skilliter.newn.cam.ac.uk/?p=261
Secondary URL Description: The conference program can be downloaded from this link.
Conference Name: The Ottomans and Entertainment

Staging an Empire: An Ottoman Circumcision Ceremony as Cultural Performance (Article)
Title: Staging an Empire: An Ottoman Circumcision Ceremony as Cultural Performance
Author: Kaya Sahin
Abstract: This article discusses an Ottoman circumcision ceremony for three princes held in the summer of 1530. The event stemmed from a new Ottoman court ceremonial, and its sundry activities, including gift exchanges, mock battles, processions, skills demonstrations, and feasts, were spread over a twenty-day period. These activities enabled individuals and groups within the Ottoman political-military elite, and within the city of Constantinople, to perform their identities and assert their place in the Ottoman social order. The ceremony allows us to discuss the origins and contents of Ottoman ceremonial culture, which borrowed themes and motifs from the Byzantines, the Venetians, and the myriad Turko-Muslim polities with whom the Ottomans maintained intense diplomatic and cultural relations. Next, it highlights the elevation of male circumcision, a fundamental ritual in all Islamic societies, to the status of a major dynastic event that addressed the entire Ottoman polity as well as its competitors in East and West. Finally, it shows how, in early modern societies, public ceremonies served as instruments of governance by creating highly visible, memorable, and relatively participatory events, and by constituting new spaces for political and cultural interactions.
Year: 2018
Primary URL: https://doi.org/10.1093/ahr/123.2.463
Access Model: Subscription only
Format: Journal
Periodical Title: American Historical Review
Publisher: Oxford University Press

Staging an Empire: Cultural Performances at an Ottoman Circumcision Ceremony (Conference Paper/Presentation)
Title: Staging an Empire: Cultural Performances at an Ottoman Circumcision Ceremony
Author: Kaya Sahin
Abstract: n/a
Date: 02/16/2018
Conference Name: Between Habsburg and Ottoman Empires: Sovereign Forms of Migration

To Observe, to Record, to Memorialize (ca. 1582): Depicting the Circumcision of an Ottoman Prince (Conference Paper/Presentation)
Title: To Observe, to Record, to Memorialize (ca. 1582): Depicting the Circumcision of an Ottoman Prince
Author: Kaya Sahin
Abstract: n/a
Date: 03/21/2018
Conference Name: Assessing the Islamic Past: Historical and Philosophical Interventions


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