By Nurçin İleri. This essay centres on a series of photographs, which I first came across at an auction in November 2020. These black and white images depict Istanbul’s first urban scale power plant, the Silahtarağa campus and extension of the grid to the city in the early 1910s.
By Florian Riedler and Nenad Stefanov. Public discourse and official historiography in Southeast Europe still understand the Ottoman period as ‘backward’. This backwardness is particularly associated with social and cultural immobility. According to this perspective, the Ottoman state dominated the Balkan Peninsula and prevented it from ‘moving forward’ and ‘progressing’ like the rest of Europe.
By Gabriel Doyle. When new railway lines started to crisscross Ottoman territory at the end of the 19th century, the infrastructural change fuelled a missionary awakening. Catholic congregations, especially, were interested in the urban and rural areas around the Anatolian railway line, which started to be built in 1889 and intended to link Istanbul to Ankara.
By Camille Lyans Cole. On May 17, 1883, at 10:15 AM, the Tigris river steamship “Mejidieh” stopped in the town of Qal‘at Salih, where it picked up eighty skins of ghee (clarified butter) and dropped off three passengers.
By Onur İnal. On an October afternoon in 1857, a great crowd gathered at the Caravan Bridge in Izmir to witness an historic moment. Mustafa Pasha, the Governor of Izmir, the müftü, or chief jurist, of Izmir, the Greek and Armenian bishops, the chief rabbi of the Jews, Izmir-Aydın railway company officials, and elegantly dressed men and women were all at present.
By Nurçin İleri. The year 1933 was particularly significant in the history of Turkey. Following a long preparation process, the tenth-year anniversary of the Republic, which ran day and night on 29 October, was held more gloriously than those in previous years, serving as a model for the future.
By İlkay Yilmaz. In the 19th century, the Ottoman Empire attempted to construct new technologies of transportation and communication in its territories. These were not only new technologies for the empire, they were also new to the rest of the world.
We invite contributions to discuss and investigate how infrastructures shape and affect power relations and daily life; how they produce or organize inequalities, discrimination, or differentiated access to public goods and services; and how they may become part of state violence, or resistance, in Ottoman and post-Ottoman geographies.
‘Pickled’ infrastructure and connectivity: Locating community engagement in Northeast India’s infrastructural transformation
The local communities remain trapped between the interplay of the past developmental lag of the region and the current development impetus. ‘Pickled’ infrastructure and connectivity in Northeast India The distant...
Reflections from the Transregional Academy on “Infrastructures, Regions, and Urbanization”, 29 September to 7 October 2018, Singapore by Norman Aselmeyer (European University Institute, Florence) In 1999, Susan Leigh Star famously...