As If Silent and Absent: Bonds of Enslavement in the Islamic by Ehud R. Toledano

By Ehud R. Toledano

This groundbreaking booklet reconceptualizes slavery during the voices of enslaved folks themselves, voices that experience remained silent within the narratives of traditional historical past. Focusing particularly at the Islamic center East from the past due eighteenth to the early 20th century, Ehud R. Toledano examines how bonded folks skilled enslavement in Ottoman societies. He attracts on court docket files and numerous different unexamined basic assets to discover very important new information regarding the Africans and Circassians who have been forcibly faraway from their very own societies and transplanted to heart East cultures that have been alien to them. Toledano additionally considers the reports of those enslaved humans in the context of the worldwide heritage of slavery.
The e-book seems on the bonds of slavery from an unique viewpoint, relocating clear of the conventional master/slave domination paradigm towards the perspective of the enslaved and their responses to their plight. With prepared and unique insights, Toledano indicates new methods of considering enslavement.

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Additional info for As If Silent and Absent: Bonds of Enslavement in the Islamic Middle East

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Accordingly, it seems to me absolutely essential to establish that I, at least, and arguably most scholars working in this field, view slavery as a universal phenomenon, not peculiar to any culture nor deriving from any specific set of shared social values. Because human bondage in its various forms existed in almost all known historical societies and cultures, no writer may claim the moral high ground vis-à-vis any culture in this regard. By leveling the moral playing field, we in no way wish to suspend judgment with regard to enslavement, nor do we advocate an abdication of responsibility.

42. Clifford Geertz, Works and Lives: The Anthropologist as Author, Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1988: 149. 43. M. (Local). ” Indeed, a number of important social and cultural insights concerning enslaved Africans and Circassians in the Ottoman Empire can be gained by examining their forced transportation as a type of migration. Even more can be learned by linking that to the study of diasporas, a study that has come into vogue during the past decade or so. Immigration and emigration in the Ottoman Middle East and North Africa have not been unusual.

She then defines what in her view is “a paradox at the heart of the Ottoman system—that ordinary subjects enjoyed rights denied to those by whom they were governed. ” Over the centuries of Ottoman imperial rule, certain aspects of kul servitude were gradually mitigated in practice, but Peirce is certainly correct in her observations. As in my previous works, here, too, my view is that all legally bonded subjects of the sultan should be treated as enslaved persons for the purpose of social analysis.

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