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Title: “Becoming the Turk”: The use of Ottoman images in early modern pamphlets as crossroads for competing nations, religious adversaries and national politics
Authors: Van Waelderen, Dirk G.
Issue Date: Nov-2014
Conference: Moveable Types: People, Ideas, and Objects. Cultural exchanges in early modern Europe location:Canterbury date:27-29 November 2014
Abstract: In the sixteenth and seventeenth century, images of the Ottomans were frequently used in printings like pamphlets, news books, etc. The way the Ottomans were portrayed and the interactions of the Ottomans with Western Europe have often been food for discussion for scientists from many disciplines, like history, sociology, linguistics, etc. It is, as such beneficial, for this multidisciplinary theme to be aware and to consider at all the different angles to gain a better understanding of how and why the Ottomans were portrayed. In the Habsburg Netherlands, being one of the important printing centres of the time, pamphlets were rather popular and regularly portrayed the Ottomans. The shifting images of the Ottomans in these pamphlets and other similar printings will be the base of the research.

The sketched portrait of the Ottomans in the Habsburg Netherlands was marked by an often religious and an antagonistic perspective. It wasn’t however fixed in time, in place and in method. What aspects were shown, and was there a specific evolution? This research examines how this image shifted between different (opposing) nations It further analyses the use by different religious opponents like Protestants and Catholics and the application of the image for internal regional politics. Pamphleteering was also a lucrative business, which further marked the use of these images. The economic aspect and the interaction of the bookshops and printers therefore needs to be taken into account. Many protagonists in the different Western European nations of the sixteenth and seventeenth century became ‘Turks’. As such it became a pan-European theme, breaking classic boundaries of religion, economics and politics.
Publication status: published
KU Leuven publication type: IMa
Appears in Collections:Early Modern History (15th-18th Centuries), Leuven

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