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Elif Mahir Metinsoy

Ordinary women are among the least known subjects of Ottoman Turkish historiography. One of the most important reasons for this lack of information is that the Turkish archives are not organized in such a way that researchers can easily access documents on ordinary women. However, the difficulty in finding women’s voices in historical documents is only one part of the problem. Whereas conventional Ottoman-Turkish historiography prioritizes the acts of those holding power, most Turkish feminist historiography focuses on the organized activities of elite and middle-class women rather than ordinary women due to various paradigmatic and methodological restrictions. This article explains these limitations and proposes less conventional methods for conducting research on ordinary Ottoman women, who were important actors on the home front during World War I. It discusses theoretical approaches, methodology, and alternative sources that can be used to conduct research on women in the Turkish archives. It also presents some examples of ordinary Ottoman women’s voices and everyday struggles against the violence they suffered during World War I, using new, alternative sources like women’s petitions and telegrams to the state bureaucracy as well as folk songs.

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Serpil Atamaz-Hazar

This article discusses the historical value of Ottoman women’s periodicals published in the aftermath of the 1908 Revolution, which marked the beginning of the Constitutional Era (1908–1918). Through specific examples of women’s writings in the press, it illustrates how these periodicals can shed light on the previously unexplored aspects of this period. The article argues that women’s journals allow scholars both to recover the identities and stories of hundreds of women, which would have been lost otherwise, and to challenge the mainstream historiography, which has traditionally presented a one-dimensional portrayal of the Constitutional Era by privileging men’s voices and experiences over women’s. It demonstrates that women’s journals not only reveal a dynamic, flexible, and complex milieu, in which women could and did act as agents of both social and political change, but also signify the multifaceted transformation the Revolution of 1908 caused in Ottoman society in the early twentieth century.

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Ayse Durakbasa, Raluca Maria Popa, Ralitsa Muharska, Nadya Radulova and Krassimira Daskalova

Serpil Çakır, Osmanlı Kadın Hareketi [The Ottoman women’s movement], Istanbul: Metis, 1994, second edition 1996; 350 pp. (pb) 13,20 YTL. ISBN: 975-342-044-7

Krassimira Daskalova ed., Voices of Their Own. Oral History Interviews of Women, trans. Ralitsa Muharska and Elitsa Stoitsova, Sofia: Polis Publishers, 2004, 207 pp. (pb). ISBN 954-796-008-3

Kristen Ghodsee, Red Riviera: Gender, Tourism, and Postsocialism on the Black Sea, Duke University Press, Durham and London, 2005, 174 pp., 2 appendices, $74.95 (cloth). ISBN cloth 0-8223-3650-2; $21.95 (pb). ISBN 0-8223-3662-6

Irina Novikova and Dimitar Kambourov, eds., Men in the Global World: Integrating Post-Socialist Perspectives, Helsinki: Kikimora Publications, 2003, 250 pp. (pb). ISBN 952-10-1308-7

Olga Todorova, Zhenite ot tsentralnite Balkani prez osmanskata epoha (XV–XVII vek). (Women of the Central Balkans during the early centuries of Ottoman Rule [fifteenth-seventeenth Centuries]). Sofia: Gutenberg, 2004, 515 pp., 12 BGL (pb). ISBN954-9943-85-2

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Liliana Simeonova, Anna Hájková, Sashka Georgieva, Kristina Yordanova, Anna Loutfi, Svetla Baloutzova, Christiane Eifert, Francisca de Haan, Olga Todorova, Daniela Koleva, Susan Zimmermann and Isidora Jarić

Marianna D. Birnbaum, The Long Journey of Gracia Mendes

Melissa Feinberg, Elusive Equality: Gender, Citizenship, and the Limits of Democracy in Czechoslovakia, 1918–1950

Linda Garland, ed., Byzantine Women: Varieties of Experience 800–1200

Milena Kirova, Maya Boyadzhievska and Biljana Dojcˇinovic´-Nešic´, eds., Glasove: Nova humanitaristika ot balkanski avtorki (Voices: New humanitarian studies of women writers from the Balkans)

Ruth A. Miller, The Limits of Bodily Integrity. Abortion, Adultery and Rape Legislation in Comparative Perspective

Luisa Passerini, Dawn Lyon, Enrica Capussotti and Ioanna Laliotou, eds., Women Migrants from East to West. Gender, Mobility and Belonging in Contemporary Europe 263

Ralf Roth and Robert Beachy, eds., Who Ran the Cities? City Elites and Urban Power Structures in Europe and North America, 1750–1940

Edith Saurer, Margareth Lanzinger and Elisabeth Frysak, eds., Women’s Movements. Networks and Debates in Post-Communist Countries in the 19th and 20th Centuries

Lucienne Thys-S¸ enocak, Ottoman Women Builders. The Architectural Patronage of Hadice Turhan Sultan

Galina Valtchinova, Balkanski yasnovidki i prorochici ot XX vek (Balkan visionaries and prophetesses in the twentieth century)

Natascha Vittorelli, Frauenbewegung um 1900. Über Triest nach Zagreb (The women’s movement around 1900. Through Trieste to Zagreb)

Dubravka Žarkov, The Body of War: Media, Ethnicity, and Gender in the Break-up of Yugoslavia