[P6302] Early Modern Mobilities: People, Animals, and Objects within and beyond the Ottoman Empire

Created by Daniel Ohanian
Tuesday, 11/30/21 11:30 am


In a recent, celebrated book, Sebastian Conrad has shown that mobility and connection have become hallmarks of global history (What Is Global History?, 2016). Ottomanists and scholars in associated fields such as Mediterranean studies have often been part of this broad scholarly trend, as they have analyzed the movement of people, goods, and ideas into, through, and out of the Ottoman Empire. Most of this work has centred on the late Ottoman period, with early modern research being concentrated in four domains: economic history, international political history, Eastern Christian studies, and Islamic studies. Not all of this research has focused self-consciously on mobility, however, and there is still much to do, both by initiating new lines of inquiry as well as by following tracks already laid out in previous studies. The purpose of this panel is to pursue both avenues.
Our panel is made up of four papers that deal with various forms of mobility during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: forced and voluntary, short- and long-distance, concerning humans, animals, and objects. They span a broad geography across and beyond the Ottoman space, connecting Anatolia, Greater Syria, the Balkans, and France. They also highlight the breadth of mobility by investigating how it affected those who moved and those who did not, how it was materialized in the form of physical objects, how it served as a catalyst for new ideas, and how it became embedded in the experiences of the empire’s subjects regardless of faith, social standing, or ethnicity.
Our first paper is the broadest in temporal and geographic scope, tracing continuity and change in geographical knowledge over 200 years. The second paper demonstrates how the peregrinations of the Ottoman court affected the people and animals of the southern Balkans during the 1660s. The third analyzes the reflections of travel upon an Armenian pilgrim’s patronized souvenirs during the 1690s. And the fourth uses a bishop’s autobiography to reflect on mobility and captivity around 1700.
By focusing on Ottoman mobilities in particular, this panel draws attention to the ways in which various kinds of movement connected the lives of those who lived during this understudied “middle period” of Ottoman history, building on old approaches and proposing new ones along the way.


Society for Armenian Studies (SAS)


Art/Art Hist; Geog; Hist; Art/Art Hist; Geog; Hist; Art/Art Hist; Geog; Hist; Art/Art Hist; Geog; Hist; Art/Art Hist; Geog; Hist; Art/Art Hist; Geog; Hist; Art/Art Hist; Geog; Hist; Art/Art Hist; Geog; Hist; Art/Art Hist; Geog; Hist; Art/Art Hist; Geog; Hist




E. Natalie Rothman

(University of Toronto)
E. Natalie Rothman is an Associate Professor of History at the University of Toronto, specializing in the history of Venice and the Ottoman Empire in the early modern period. Her broader interests include the history of cultural mediation, the relationship...
Panel Participating Role(s): Chair; Panel Participating Role(s): Organizer; Presenter;

Arlen Wiesenthal

(The University of Chicago)
I am a historian of the Ottoman Empire whose interests lie at the intersection between urban history and the social and cultural histories of monarchy. While my central focus is the Ottoman world (circa 1300-1922) and the Ottoman dynasty (“The House...
Panel Participating Role(s): Presenter;

Isin Taylan

(Yale University)
Panel Participating Role(s): Presenter;

Erin Pinon

(Princeton University)
Panel Participating Role(s): Presenter;