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Works-in-Progress Workshop: “Early Modern Orientalism between Humanist Ideals and Political Pragmatism: Busbecq’s Ottoman Missions (1554-62)”

Fri, Mar 1, 12:00 pm
Ballantine 006

Kaya Sahin, Assistant Professor of History, will discuss his paper titled “Early Modern Orientalism between Humanist Ideals and Political Pragmatism: Busbecq’s Ottoman Missions (1554-62).”

Ogier Ghiselin de Busbecq (1520/1-1592) received a thorough humanist education in Louvain, Padua, and Venice, and entered the service of the Austrian Habsburgs in 1552 as a diplomat. Sent to the Ottoman court in 1554, he served as Ferdinand’s ambassador there until 1562. He gathered his reminiscences of his activities in the Ottoman territories in four letters, which were published in a partial Latin edition in 1581, and in a definitive edition in 1589. I argue that the Letters are one of the best representatives of “early modern Orientalism,” and provide a suitable venue for a discussion on the emergence of new European identities as well as new discourses on the Orient in sixteenth-century Europe.

The pre-circulated paper will be made available upon request.

Feel free to bring your own lunch.