Download Empire of Difference: The Ottomans in Comparative by Karen Barkey PDF

By Karen Barkey

This publication is a comparative examine of imperial association and durability that assesses Ottoman successes in addition to disasters opposed to these of different empires with comparable features. Barkey examines the Ottoman Empire's social association and mechanisms of rule at key moments of its background, emergence, imperial institutionalization, home improvement, and transition to countryside, revealing how the empire controlled those moments, tailored, and avoided crises and what alterations made it rework dramatically. The versatile innovations through which the Ottomans maintained their legitimacy, the cooperation in their diversified elites either on the heart and within the provinces, in addition to their regulate over fiscal and human assets have been accountable for the durability of this actual ''negotiated empire.'' Her research illuminates issues that come with imperial governance, imperial associations, imperial range and multiculturalism, the way during which dissent is dealt with and/or internalized, and the character of country society negotiations.

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In comparison to the European tax farming systems that were controlled by centralized organizations, the Ottoman one was unmanageable. However, I also show that one of the strongest features of Ottoman rule, the management of diversity, became the locus of imperial failure. That is, under conditions of economic transformation, the comparative differential success of ethnic and religious groups emerged as a threat rather than an impulse for improvement. Locally, as well as more centrally, competition between Muslim and non-Muslim merchants – relations fueled by ethnic entrepreneurs – led to the hardening of boundaries between groups and to the formation of separate identities where groups were in relations with each other but clearly forming distinct and bounded understandings of each other.

This is because the patterns of change in boundaries – their formation and activation, their maintenance and reinforcement, and their suppression and obliteration – tell us a lot about how empires understood and organized diversity in different times. Understanding this variation gives us insight into the workings of imperial society. Imperial states maintain rule over multireligious and multiethnic diversity through a variety of policies, from the “toleration” of diversity and its incorporation to forced conversion and assimilation.

Rather, their goal was to maintain power and to conquer or hold territories. Tolerance, assimilation, and intolerance were on the menu of strategies designed to squeeze resources out of minorities and to enforce allegiance to the imperial state. 39 Empires have differed along this continuum; some have emphasized assimilation over toleration, whereas others have moved quickly toward the persecution of groups perceived as a threat to the empire. Imperial states have also displayed a combination of strategies, defining groups differentially and therefore applying different measures for dealing with diversity.

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