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Ottoman Women in Cartoons (1870-1911)

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This paper examines the representations of women living in the Ottoman Empire in the masculine-dominated satirical press of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. It focuses on two satirical journals: Diyojen, the first journal of its kind, issued between 1870 and 1873; and Kalem, a prominent publication in the empire between 1908 and 1911. This was a significant moment in the political and social life of the empire, with the emergence of nationalist ideas within the public sphere in the aftermath of the Young Turk Revolution (1908) and the implementation of the Ottoman constitution. Further, women writers and publishers took on more prominent positions within the national press, representing a shift in the social position of women. The paper demonstrates this socio-political change in the visual representation of women during this period through a comparative study of these two journals. Ultimately, the paper reveals several strategies used by the masculine-dominated press to influence public opinion regarding the changing place of women within the society.

This talk is part of the Graduate Workshop in Economic and Social History series.

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