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Red SeaIn Search of Lost Space$
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Alexis Wick

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780520285910

Published to California Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520285910.001.0001

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Self-Portrait of the Ottoman Red Sea, June 21, 1777

Self-Portrait of the Ottoman Red Sea, June 21, 1777

(p.88) Three Self-Portrait of the Ottoman Red Sea, June 21, 1777
Red Sea

Alexis Wick

University of California Press

This chapter recounts the history of the Ottoman Red Sea through the prism of the sources themselves. It examines how some Ottomans themselves saw the Red Sea and its world in the late eighteenth century by analyzing an official document, dubbed Document 227. An investigation of the various spatialities and temporalities embedded in the content and form of the document reveals a complex universe, involving local and global politics, the movement of tides and winds, the difficulties of shipbuilding and seafaring, the relationships within and between Ottoman state and society, various cycles of exchange and mobility, and other factors. By subjecting the Ottoman Red Sea to teleological and absolutist notions of time and space, the chapter presents a self-portrait of the region.

Keywords:   history, Ottoman, Red Sea, Document 227, politics, shipbuilding, seafaring, mobility

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