Liz Ohanessian interviewed me for a piece she wrote in the LA Weekly about tattooed Armenian Genocide victims. A photograph George Rinhart took of an unnamed tattooed survivor in Aleppo in 1919 is on display at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles’ “Tattoo” exhibit.
I have been working with the BBC series “Museum of Lost Objects.” This week, a new episode, “Return to Aleppo,” aired featuring the story of Zahed Tajedden, whose home in Judayda Quarter was converted into an impromtu hospital during the war. I shared some of my reflections on the history of Judayda, the Christian quarter of Aleppo, which I researched in the Syrian National Archives before they were closed in 2012. Thank you Maryam Maruf and Kanish Tharoor including me in this amazing bit of journalism! Listen to the report here on BBC Radio 4.
Associate Professor, Islamic World/Middle East History
Director of Global Studies (2014-2016)
Phone: (509) 522-4428
Office: Maxey Hall 237
Ph.D. Georgetown University
M.A. The University of Michigan
B.A. Albion College
Fellowships: Cornell University Society for the Humanities Fellowship (2016-2017), American Research Institute in Turkey Fellowship (2016), Fulbright CIES-Syria (2007-2008), Fulbright IIE -Syria (1999).
Awards:G. Thomas Edwards Award for Excellence in Teaching and Scholarship (2016), Syrian Studies Association Best Article Prize (2014), Ara and Edma Dumanian Visiting Professor in Armenian Studies in the Department of Near Eastern languages and Civilizations at the University of Chicago (Spring, 2013), Syrian Studies Association Best Dissertation Prize (2004).
Professional Associations: Board member of the Syrian Studies Association (2013-2015) and Ottoman and Turkish Studies Association (2012-2015), Chair of M. Fuat Köprülü Book Prize Committee OTSA (2014)
Areas of Research Interest: Syria, Ottoman Empire, Turkey, urban history, social history, Armenian history, Islamic law, gender, sexuality, and religious minorities.
Areas of Teaching Interest: Ottoman Empire, modern Middle East history and politics, nationalism, women in Islam, early Islamic history, Muslim travel literature, Armenian history, and imperialism.
“Off the Straight Path”: Illicit Sex, Law, and Community in Ottoman Aleppo (Syracuse University Press, 2008).
Scenes & Types. Proceedings from the Global Studies Human Zoos Symposium and Scenes & Types Sheehan Gallery Exhibition (Global Studies Initiative, Whitman College, 2016).
“An “Armenian Golden Age”: Reconstructing the Armenian Urban Footprint in Judayda Quarter, Aleppo,” in Requiem for Ottoman Aleppo/Alep à l’époque ottomane, un requiem, ed. Stefan Winter (Forthcoming)
“Armenian Women, Legal Bargaining, and Gendered Politics of Conversion in Eighteenth Century Aleppo” Journal of Middle Eastern Women’s Studies (March 2016)
“Sexing the Hammam: Discourses on Gender and Sexuality in the Ottoman Bathhouse” in Gender and Sexuality in Muslim Cultures ed. Gul Ozyegin (Ashgate, 2015)
“#SaveKessab, #Save Aleppo, and Kim Kardashian: Syria’s Rashomon Effect” Jadaliyya (April 24, 2014)
“Naked Anxiety: Bathhouses, Nudity, and Muslim/non-Muslim Relations in Eighteenth-Century Aleppo” International Journal of Middle Eastern Studies, 45:4 (November 2013) 651-676.
“‘Because He is So Tender and Pretty’: Sexual Deviance and Heresy in Eighteenth- Century Aleppo” Social Identities: Journal for the Study of Race, Nation, and Culture, 18:2 (March 2012) 175-199.
“Rewriting the History of Sexuality in the Islamic World” Hawwa 4: 1-2 (2006), “Homosexuality in Islam,” Encyclopedia of Religion and Homosexuality (Greenwood Press, 2006).
“Gender Violence and Intent in Ottoman Law: A View of the Imperial Kanunnames and Fetvas of the Sixteenth Century,” in Beyond the Exotic: Women’s Histories in Islamic Societies, ed. Amira Sonbol (Syracuse, New York, Syracuse University Press, 2005 reprinted American University of Cairo Press, 2006).
“Women, Gender and Domestic Violence” and “Rape in Islam,” Encyclopedia of Women in Islamic Cultures (E.J. Brill, Leiden, 2004).
“Sinful Professions: Illegal Occupations of Women in Ottoman Aleppo, Syria,” Hawwa 1:1, 2003.
Current research projects:
Remnants: Gender, Islamized Armenians, and Collective Memory of the Armenian Genocide (current book project)
Armenian Society in Early Modern Aleppo, 1600-1800 (future book project)