- Great analysis of Turkish-Saudi cultural war Semih Idiz, Al-Monitor
- Trump has reminded the West why it preferred US hegemony Janan Ganesh, Financial Times
- The “Redemption Arc” of criminal justice Maria Farrell, Crooked Timber
- The new map of Saturn’s moon, Titan, explained Caleb Scharf, Scientific American
I hope y’all had a chance to check out Ussama Makdisi’s essay on Ottoman cosmopolitanism from one of the nightcaps a few days back. It was excellent, and serves as good complement to Barry’s work on the Ottoman Empire here at NOL.
It’s especially good for a few reasons. First, it has a useful explanation of the mandate system that London and Paris experimented with. Second, it’s comparative and brings in lots of different modes of governance. Third, there is an interesting discussing about citizenship (consult NOL for more on citizenship, too). Lastly, it explains well why the Arab world continues to wallow in extreme inequality and authoritarianism.
Makdisi represents a shift in thinking in Arab circles away from victimization and towards self-determination and responsibility: no longer are the French and British (and Jews) to be reviled and blamed for everything that’s wrong with the Middle East. There is a shift towards internationalist thinking. The Americans now play a positive role in what could have been (and still might be) a freer Middle East. The British and French have factions now and some of them were supportive of Arab voices, some of them not. Arab scholars are finally benefiting from the American university educational system, probably because there are so many Arabs studying in the US now.
Makdisi’s piece is not a libertarian interpretation, but it’s a start.
- Can Ottoman nostalgia be a good thing? Peter Gordon, Asian Review of Books
- Ottomanism, Nationalism, Republicanism Barry Stocker, NOL
- What is global history? One good answer (and one not so good answer) Krishan Kumar, Times Literary Supplement
- The world without the moon Caleb Scharf, Life, Unbounded
- The Ottoman origins of capitalism (pdf) Kerem Nisancioglu, Review of International Studies
- The book on Marx that Arendt never finished Geoffrey Wildanger, Boston Review
- An insider’s perspective of the Algerian War Lincoln Krause, War on the Rocks
- The racing cheetahs of the 1930s Jennifer Noonan, Damn Interesting