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HIST 219W Lecture Notes

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HIST 122
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The Middle East and North Africa in the 20th Century with Peter Wien week 1: january 28 & 30 FOUNDATIONS: The Middle East & N. Africa to the end of the 19th century. Geography of the Modern Middle East: * * N. Africa: mauritania, morocco, algeria, tunisia, libya, egypt, sudan * Arabian peninsula: yemen, oman, saudi... * Culturally related: turkey, iran, afghanistan Diversity Non-Islamic religions: * Coptic Christians of Egypt * Aramaic Christian orthodoxy in Syria, Turkey, Iraq * Jews of Israel, Iraq, Syria Islamic denominations * Sunni: dominant in Arab * Shia * some say Alawites are Shia: Bashar Al Assad of Syria * Druis (SP?) Ethnic communities * Assyrians * Persian * Kurds: NE Iraq, Turkey * Armenians: Christians, different from Assyrians Islamic History * Muhammad born in 570 c.e. * Hijra from Mecca to Medina in 622 ce * Start of islamic calendar, 1 a.h. * Muhammad moves from religious to political leader as he becomes arbiter for community * Revelations & surahs reflect this shift in responsibility, from spiritual to political * Muhammad dies in 632: question of his succession * 632-661: the Rightly Guided Caliphate * Elected and accepted through consensual succession * 4 Rashidun: Abu Bakr, Umar, Uthman, Ali * At the death of Ali, this consensus breaks apart * B/c Islamic empire & community has grown increasingly diverse and broad * Faction believed Ali (Muhammad's son-in-law) had Prophet's spirituality & was the only legitimate successor * Shias believe Abu Bakr, Umar, Uthman were illegitimate and a faction murders Uthman * When Ali becomes caliph, a war: those who think Ali was only legit leader vs. opposers * Beginning of the schism between Shi'is & Sunnis: the Alids Ummayyad Caliphate: 661-750 * Transition from Arab dominance to ethnic diversity * Military rulers: rules on basis of dominance in Arabia * Dynasty: no longer succession based on virtue, but by blood * Being dominant Arab family is not enough to establish legitimacy Abbasid Caliphate: 750-1258 * Growing influence of Persian, Turkish * Kurds, the Berbers of N. Africa, Europeans of Spain, etc. * 1001 Arabian Nights, science & philosophy, all from this flourishing time * Ends with Mongul conquest of Baghdad, last Abbasid has to flee Mongols push west, meet the powerful Mamluks in Syria Mamluk: 1250-1517 * Egypt & Syria * Formation of elite groups thru slavery: a Caliph/ruler can only guarantee his survival and continuance if he surrounds himself with uprooted people (mostly Christians taken from Jordan, Caucasus) who have no other loyalties * So rule of an elite caste of military slaves, who gain top edu, military leadership, etc. * This caste takes over Egypt, in a detached fashion, and recruits next generations. Sunni vs. Shi'i Sunnis believe in distinction between political and religious authorities Ulema (pl. of Alim): Sunni experts who develop law via study of Islamic scripture Shi'i have no distinction between political and religious leader Legitimacy of rule derived from descendence from the Prophet Descendance must go via Ali & Fatima Ali & sons inherited understanding of Quran & Islamic scripture 12 Shi'i Imams (Twelver Community, dominant in Iran) 1. Ali ibn Abu Talib 2. Hasan ibn Ali 3. Husain ibn Ali 4. Ali Zain-ul-Abideen ibn Ali 5. Muhammad al-Baqir 6. Jafar Al-Sadiq 7. Musa Al-Kadhim 8. Ali Al-Rida 9. Muhammad Al-Jawad 10. Ali Al-Hadi 11. Hasan Al-Askari 13. Muhammad al-Muntazar (al-Mahdi) Muhammad al-Muntazar disappeared as a young boy 12ers believe he went in occultation and is expected to return --> is the Promised Messiah/Mahdi No longer an Imam and perfect leadership for Shi'i Islam *can we replace an Imam? week 2: february 4 SPLITTING UP: THE DISINTEGRATION OF THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE issues in 19th c. society: * subject vs. citizen * Islam vs. modernity * empire vs. nation Ottoman Empire: 1281 - * Turkic warrior tribe, settles in Anatolia * Uthman I (1281) --> Osman --> Ottomans * Devshirme: a perfected system of rule by slave elite * Stability & longevity of Ottoman empire because of efficient slave elite * Artificial elite creates distance between rulers & subjects * gives subjects high autonomy, don't interfere * local jurisdictions have their own bureaucracies, courts, customary and traditional laws * state/administrative elites & local elites (slaves) form an intermediary/buffer between rulers & ruled * empire only helps by providing security and trade * Rule over diverse populations: urban, rural, Muslims, diff religs * Janissaries: ruler's infantry of ~14th cent. * Dispatched in localities, where they collect taxes * Defend the Sultan and boundaries of rule * Conquest of Byzantine's Constantinople (Istanbul) in 1453 * Around this time: rise of Saffavid empire in Iran, 1501 * Conquest of Syria & Egypt (already Muslim) in 1517 * 2 sieges of Vienna (1529, 1683) extend power to Iraq and Algeria By the early 1800s * After many years: weakening of centralized power over elites because elites build local roots and local elites take on their culture * System of rotating admin elites falters b/c of marriage, economic interests in localities * Stronger local provinces lose acknowledgement of Sultan as rule * Tax revenue falls and central state can't maintain strong military * European states are gaining strength, tech Ottoman Reforms: The Tanzimat * Arabic roots of "tanzimat": * Nizam: system * Tanzim: reform * Ottoman is losing imperial power and power of taxation * Gulhane Rescript in 1839 * Proclamation of the Ottoman Constitution in 1876 Concerns of Tanzimat: * Extend citizenship * Rights & duties, regardless of ethnicity, religion * Directly access (and tax) every individual without intermediary * Military & civil education * Develop efficient defense, admin, revenue collection * Creation of a multi-tiered state education system, breaking monopoly of religious education * Secularization of education: now to be state-run, not in madrassas * Can change the worldview, perspectives they are taught * Students develop loyalty & patriotism to state, not religion * Secularization of law: introducing secular codes of law and secular jurisdiction * Equality of law for all people --> not in Sharia * Get rid of customary, religious, and tribal laws practiced * Sultan & elite claimed right to legislate not based Sharia * Positive law: created by men on the basis of reason & rational interaction with the world * based on consensus of people in community * can be changed by community b/c it's not divine * Europeans put pressure on Ottoman to make these reforms Orientalism | Edward Said * Islam vs. modernity? How Europeans looked at the tanzimat: emulation of Europe, but failed because people were to backwards * On the colonialist and imperialist lenses of Middle Eastern studies * "The Orient" is defined by diff peoples depending on geography, their colonization: * French see N. Africa as Oriental * Americans see East Asia as Oriental * British see Middle East, Asia as Oriental * Fyi: French colonization of Morocco made it represent an "Oriental" place for tourism * Orientalism as Western scholarship & 'discourse' describing Orient with preconceived notions of backwardness, otherness, primitive * "Discourse": a term coined by French philosopher Michel Foucault * Even when examining Orient through primary sources, travels, you're still looking at it from "outside" * Assuming there's a particular type of 'bad' government in all Middle Eastern countries, "despotism" * Assuming Middle Eastern rulers are prone to lavish, wasteful living while their subjects languish * Assumed Cruelty of power ~ despotism * Orientals are irrational, incapable of looking at world rationally Islamic Reformism Islam as a universal message with individual responsibility * Conservative vs. progressive/reformist ulama * Reasons for the weakness of Muslims * lack of unity * adherence to superstitious practice * blind emulation (taqlid) Answering Criticism of Islam | Jamal al-Din al-Afghani * Reason & Islam are compatible * Islamic universalism vs. local Islam & Islam of specialists * Political reasons for adopting reason & unity in Islam * to mobilize people * to organize society & state *Develop new language & media of Islam * Arab primacy in Islam * But politics is done in Ottoman elite's near-Turkish * 19th c: explosion of Islamic print media for propagation * Language shifts to Arabic so all can understand The Theology of Unity | Muhammad 'Abduh * Lived 1849-1905 * Studies at (Sunni) Al-Azhar University * Disciple of reformist Jamal al-Din al-Afghani's * exile in Paris, Algeria, Beirut, etc after 1882 * ijtihad vs taqlid, salafiyya * taqlid (ديَْي ت): emulation of what unchallengable authorities have said (re: Islam) * ijtihad (داهتجا): due diligence, independent reasoning, or “utmost effort you can put forth” * Muslims need to look at Islam more globally, not just concrete local practices, traditions & authorities * In his writings, attacks the traditionalism Islamic scholar's exclusive, 'ulama's right to interpret Quran * Islam itself was about escaping the shackles of tradition and 'what the father practiced" * Quran: "Nay! We will follow what we found our father's doing..." (31:21) * Islam was founded on reason * Qur'an is the considered book of law * need to derive concrete directives even where Quran is not explicit * 'ulama come to these rules of law via consensus (reflecting God's will) * developed book of Shariah law, which cannot be challenged in later times * taqlid means rational interaction with Quran & law is banned * Moral: Islam requires individual responsibility and interpretation. Fall of the Ottoman * A few independence riots begin * Europe is pushing around edges of empire * France takes Algeria * Goes bankrupt about ~1890 week 3 Takhlis al-Ibriz fi Tafseel Bariz (A Paris Profile) | Rifa'a Tahtawi * French conquer Egypt under Napolean: 1783 * Around the period of modernization * Tahtawi is a well known Egyptian Imam, religious background * A Paris Profile: famous travelogue about culture & perception between Parisians and Middle East * Studies in Paris, etc * Becomes an Arabic > French translator * Ambivalent towards French culture and women's status The New Woman | Qasim Amin * French-educated Egyptian lawyer * Wanted to modernize patriarchy (emulate European patriarchy) instead of getting rid of patriarchy and achieving gender equality * Pushes to 'liberate' women in order to liberate Egypt * Education for women will help the country * ...not for women's gain, but in order to raise men better * Held up as pioneer of Egyptian, Islamic "feminism" but not actually changing women's role in society * "...the doctor who amputates a limb to save a life; the judge who mediates in disputes: not one of these men has the right to claim that his work is more beneficial to society than that of a woman who brings to society a man brought up to be of benefit to him- self, his family, and his country." Modernity? * Modernity as the liberation of the individual * 'Abduh: Islam as individual responsibility. * Modernity as the Islamic ummah can be vehicle for authoritarian rule. * Individuals must submit themselves to a leader to be an abstract ummah * Ummah: nation, community * Creation of institutions: building the state * Modernization through urbanization, triggered by economic changes * imperialism, colonialism> industrialization > large scale urbanization * People moving into port cities, slums, and lose their original communities * Islam works as an abstract ideology and worldview that gives a sense of identity Foundations of Statehood + End of Ottoman empire Resistance to the Tanzimat * Reforms imposed from top to bottom, so put on elite first * Resistance from traditional Islamic elite * Conservative reformers demand public accountability: * Young Ottomans, who reconcile political liberalism with Islamic tradition * Demand for a constitution, so head of state signs written contract to give citizens rights * Constitution curbs the divine authority of the sultan * Elected shura council * (fyi shura is the inspiration for parliament, congress!) * But... * No reforms in the economic sector * Capitulations and bankruptcy (1875) * Reform projects are expensive and rulers can't pay foreign debt * Exception: there is progress in land reform The Rule of Abdul Hamid II * Father of modern state in Ottoman * Last sultan with autocratic rule over the empire * Reign: 1876-1909 * Promotes the constitution...and revokes it 2 years later! * So end of Tanzimat (1839 - 1876) ??? * Endorses Tanzimat ??? * Conflicting trends: * (Re)-institution of autocratic rule, bit no restoration of the old regime * Continuation, competition of Tanzimat projects, minus political representation * Reformer: builds institution, endorses modernization * However, does this without will and representation of his people * Deposed soon after Young Turk rev of 1908 week 4 Modernization of Ottoman * Trade: grains, minerals * Connecting the empire * Telegraph lines * Railways connect major pop. centers throughout Ottoman * Helps major cities develop & flourish * Istanbul/Constantinople, Medina, Damascus, Haifa, Anatolia, Jaffa, Aleppo, Beirut, Baghdad, Basra, Oman... * Baghdad Railway Project: Berlin > Istanbul > Baghdad. * New military alliance between Sultan and Germany - seen as a concession * Benefits: trade, mobilizing and dispatching military, efficiency * Helps centralization efforts: quelling opposition & riots, controlling pop > localities lose control * Polytechnical schools to train skilled civil servants * Technical skills: doctors, engineers * Learn history, languages, travel abroad & connect outside empire * Education > new ideas & political trends > oppositional thinking * Oppositional thinking + actual skills > successful uprising * This educated elite has a sense of modernizati
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