Grants Program

Summer Language Grant Award Winners 2018-2019

Chloe Bordewich
Harvard University
History & Middle Eastern Studies

Chloe Bordewich is a Ph.D. candidate in History & Middle Eastern Studies at Harvard University. She received an AB in Near Eastern Studies from Princeton University and was a fellow at the Center for Arabic Study Abroad (CASA) in Cairo from 2012-13. Chloe's dissertation, tentatively titled "Empires of Suspicion: Intelligence, Power, and Social Trust in Ottoman Egypt" examines the intersection of mass politics and state secrecy in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. She is also interested in the politics of memory and use of literary sources alongside the traditional archive. With the generous support of an ITS Summer Language Study Grant, Chloe will be studying at the Ottoman Studies Foundation's Intensive Ottoman and Turkish Summer School in Cunda, Turkey. This program will provide essential training for dissertation research in the Ottoman State Archives in Istanbul beginning in September 2018.
John Perugini
University of Arizona

With the gracious support of the Institute of Turkish Studies, I have the opportunity to live in Istanbul where will be studying C1 Turkish three days a week over the course of two months. This structure will allow for my continued linguistic progression while also permitting the time to conduct preliminary research with citizen watchdog groups in preparation for my future doctoral research.

Specifically, I am curious to see how these citizen watchdog groups operate at an important juncture in the trajectory of Turkish politics—the 2018 Presidential Election. I also believe this to be a truly important moment for conceptualizing and understanding the role that citizen watchdog groups can play in Turkish society, and equally important, how these groups conceive this role and whether or not it can be sustained in the years to come.
Alison Terndrup
Boston University
History of Art and Architecture Department

Alison Terndrup is a Ph.D. candidate in the History of Art and Architecture Department at Boston University. Thanks to the support of an ITS Summer Language Study Grant, she will complete the Late Ottoman course at the Intensive Ottoman and Turkish Summer School in Cunda this summer. Improving her reading and translation skills is necessary for the dissertation research that she will carry out at the Ottoman State Archives. Her research focuses on a group of official painted portraits of Sultan Mahmud II (r. 1808-1839), bound together by their shared use of the sultan's visage, clad in his modern military uniform. The portraits, which were disseminated within the empire and abroad, buttressed the sultan's centralizing efforts during a series of sweeping military and civil reforms passed in the 1820s and 1830s. Her dissertation is concerned with the portraits' function as propaganda and their ceremonial activation within diplomatic and political contexts.
Bam Willoughby
Cornell University
Africana Studies

"The Labor of Being Arap: Land and the Production of Turkish History"

Bam Willoughby is a 4th year Ph.D. student in the field of Africana Studies at Cornell University. Their dissertation takes African descended Turkish people and their relationships to land as indexes of Turkish history. Exploring 'arap' relationships to the lands they inhabit as well as the landscapes of their own lives expands the surface area of modern Turkish history. By prioritizing 'arap' relations to space within a modern Turkish state rather than those of conventionally engaged populations their dissertation reveals both the necessity of elsewhere sites of historical inquiry as well as the primacy of African genealogies of being within a contemporary Turkish landscape. With the summer language grant Bam will be taking Ottoman Language courses at Ibn Khaldun University.

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