By Ehud R. Toledano
The e-book seems to be on the bonds of slavery from an unique point of view, relocating clear of the normal master/slave domination paradigm towards the perspective of the enslaved and their responses to their plight. With prepared and unique insights, Toledano indicates new methods of brooding about enslavement.
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Additional resources for As If Silent and Absent: Bonds of Enslavement in the Islamic Middle East
27. For more on this, see Toledano, Slavery and Abolition, Chapter 4. 24 understanding enslavement as a human bond • presentation of the removal of enslaved persons from their homes into Ottoman societies as an instance of coerced migration creating forced diasporas Taking these together as constituent parts of a unified approach, we can, it is hoped, shed some light on an important aspect of Ottoman social history. Patronage and Attachment: The Master-Slave Paradigm Revisited In Ottoman societies, as in many other Islamic and non-Islamic societies, enslavement was one of the “modes of belonging” to a social unit.
21 As 20. ” 21. ”22 Peirce points out that elite slaves were not allowed to bequeath their wealth—nor status, I would add—to their offspring, and their wealth reverted to the sultan’s treasury upon their death (a loophole was available to them through the mechanism of charitable endowment known as vakıf/waqf). ” She then defines what in her view is “a paradox at the heart of the Ottoman system—that ordinary subjects enjoyed rights denied to those by whom they were governed. ” Over the centuries of Ottoman imperial rule, certain aspects of kul servitude were gradually mitigated in practice, but Peirce is certainly correct in her observations.
Writers about Islamic societies in general have been sensitive—some might say, overly so—to any shred of criticism, be it hedged, balanced, or even implied. The Orientalist tradition, or paradigm, in Middle Eastern studies has been seen, often with good reason, as judgmental, patronizing, moralistic, and deprecating toward Arabs and Muslims, their culture, their religion and belief systems, and their political and economic life. All have been seen as reinforcing negative political attitudes toward contemporary causes espoused by Arabs and Muslims, ultimately marginalizing or even excluding them from the international community.
As If Silent and Absent: Bonds of Enslavement in the Islamic Middle East by Ehud R. Toledano