October 2021

CSSH congratulates Marc David Baer (“Turk and Jew in Berlin: The First Turkish Migration to Germany and the Shoah” (CSSH 55-2, 2014), “The Double Bind of Race and Religion: The Conversion of the Dönme to Turkish Secular Nationalism” (CSSH 46-4, 2004), and “Tolerance and Conversion in the Ottoman Empire: A Conversation” with Ussama Makdisi and Andrew Shryock (CSSH 51-4, 2009)) on the publication of his latest, The Ottomans: Khans, Caesars, and Caliphs (Basic Books, 2021). The publisher writes:

The Ottoman Empire has long been depicted as the Islamic, Asian antithesis of the Christian, European West. But the reality was starkly different: the Ottomans’ multiethnic, multilingual, and multireligious domain reached deep into Europe’s heart. Indeed, the Ottoman rulers saw themselves as the new Romans. Recounting the Ottomans’ remarkable rise from a frontier principality to a world empire, historian Marc David Baer traces their debts to their Turkish, Mongolian, Islamic, and Byzantine heritage. The Ottomans pioneered religious toleration even as they used religious conversion to integrate conquered peoples. But in the nineteenth century, they embraced exclusivity, leading to ethnic cleansing, genocide, and the empire’s demise after the First World War.