A selection of recent publications from our members

Night on Earth: A History of International Humanitarianism in the Near East, 1918–1930

A broad-ranging account of international humanitarian programs in Central and Eastern Europe ithe Balkans and the Near East from 1918 to 1930. Davide Rodogno shows that international ‘relief’ and ‘development’ were intertwined long before the birth of the United Nations. Influenced by colonial motivations and ideologies these humanitarians attempted to reshape entire communities and nations through reconstruction and rehabilitation programmes. Davide considers the activities of a range of secular and religious organisations and philanthropic foundations in the US and Europe including the American Relief Administration, the American Red Cross, the Quakers, Near East Relief and the International Committee of the Red Cross.

Dangerous Gifts: Imperialism, Security, and Civil Wars in the Levant, 1798-1864

Ozan Ozavci offers the first genealogical analysis of western interventionism in the Levant whilst freeing the Eastern Question from the monopoly of Great Power politics and foregrounding the experience of Levantine actors.

More by Ozan Ozavci

Jews, liberalism, and antisemitism

Ozan Ozavci’s chapter on Russian writer Vladimir Jabotinksy discusses the tensions between antisemitisim and ‘other liberalisms’ within non-Western contexts.

Ideology on Trial: The Prosecution of Pan-Turkists and Leftists at the Dawn of the Cold War in Turkey, 1944-1947

James Ryan‘s article examines a series of trials of ultranationalist and leftist intellectuals that changed the political and intellectual landscape within Turkey at the onset of the Cold War.

How the West Stole Democracy from the Arabs: The Syrian Congress of 1920 and the Destruction of its Historic Liberal-Islamic Alliance

Dedicated to ‘all Syrians’, Elizabeth F. Thompson’s account of the Syrian-Arab Congress draws upon an array of untapped primary sources and offers a groundbreaking account of brief unity – and of its destruction.

More by Elizabeth Thompson

How the Failures of the 1919 Versailles Peace Treaty Set the State for Today’s Anti-Racist Uprisings

Thompson argues that the racism that recently became the target of protest across the globe is rooted in the tragic choices of leaders, made a century ago.

Comrades on Elephants: Economic Anti-Imperialism, Orientalism, and Soviet Diplomacy in Afghanistan, 1921–23

In this article, Sam Hirst analyzes early Soviet diplomacy in Afghanistan (1921-1923) and argues that the early 1920s were a formative moment in which the Bolsheviks’ interactions with states like Afghanistan, Iran, and Turkey shaped ideas about economic development and imperialism that would influence Soviet engagements with the Third World.

Sovereignty under the League of Nations Mandates: The Jurists’ Debates

Leonard Smith‘s article is an extrapolation from his book Sovereignty at the Paris Peace Conference of 1919 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2018). This article explores how the lack of consensus over the location of sovereignty in the League of Nations Mandate created an absence at the centre of the mandate system, an absence which the politics of the interwar period would have to fill.

Greeks in Turkey: Elite Nationalism and Minority Politics in Late Ottoman and Early Republican Istanbul

Dimitris Kamouzis provides a thorough historical analysis of Greek elite nationalism in Istanbul during and in the aftermath of the Greek-Turkish War (1919-1922) and critically assesses the application of the minority clauses of the Treaty of Lausanne in Turkey after 1923.

Forthcoming from Dimitris Kamouzis

They Shall Not Perish! The Greek Refugee Crisis of 1922 and International Humanitarian Organizations  

The aim of this book is to highlight a significant aspect of the post-1922 relief and settlement history of the Asia Minor Greeks, namely the aid of western humanitarian organizations – especially the American Red Cross, the Near East Relief Committee and the British Save the Children Fund . 

Ottoman Albanians in an era of Transition: An Engagement with a Fluid Modern World

Known in subsequent generations as heroes of Albanian nationalism, the Ottoman-Southern Albanian (Tosk) activists studied here by Isa Blumi demonstrate how a self-selective constituency challenged the Ottoman government to adapt to a changing world.

More by Isa Blumi

Ottoman Refugees, 1878-1939: Migration in a Post-Imperial World

Imperial Equivocations: Britain’s Temperamental Mobilization of the Caliphate, 1912-1924,” Rivista italiana di storia internazionale, vol. IV, no. 1 (forthcoming)

The biography as institutional can-opener: An investigation of core bureaucratic practices in the early years of the League of Nations Secretariat

Haakon Ikonomous contributing chapter to this edited volume focused on the Ottoman Greek international civil servant Thanassis Aghnides, who ended up playing an important behind-the-scenes role in facilitating and monitoring the forced Greco-Turkish population exchange. The chapter emphasizes how a biographical perspective can be used to investigate how bureaucrats were recruited and worked within International Organizations.

Recovering Armenia : The Limits of Belonging in Post-Genocide Turkey

Lerna Ekmekçioğlu offers the first in-depth study of the aftermath of the 1915 Armenian Genocide and the Armenians who remained in Turkey. First published in 2016, the Turkish translation is now available.

Forced Migration as Nation-Building: The League of Nations, Minority Protection, and the Greek-Turkish Population Exchange

Sarah Shields argues in this article that the forced migration has its roots in the centuries-long legacy of European fantasies about the brutality of ‘the Turk’, while at the same time satisfying the contemporary desire of an emerging Turkish-nationalist elite, which seized on the ‘exchange’ as a way to consolidate its new state and legislate a foundational Turkish identity.

Forthcoming from Sarah Shields

“Flags and Blood: European Jews, Refugee Restrictions, and Rioting in 1929 Palestine,” conference volume, Brill, 2021.

“The Vatican and the 1929 Riots in Palestine,” Archivum Ottomanicum.

Mr Five Per Cent: The many lives of Calouste Gulbenkian, the world’s richest man

Jonathan Conlin‘s definitive biography of an Ottoman-Armenian amira, diplomat and oil magnate (1869-1955) who created the Turkish (later Iraq) Petroleum Company won the 2020 BAC Wadsworth Prize, and has been translated into five languages.

More by Jonathan Conlin

“Our Dear Resadiye”: The Legends and the Loans behind Ottoman Naval Rearmament, 1908-1914″

Jonathan Conlin’s 2022 research article in the International History Review torpedoed the familiar myth that charitable donations to the Donanma Cemiyeti (Ottoman Navy League) paid for the two dreadnoughts whose “theft” by Winston Churchill in July 1914 allegedly led the Ottoman Empire to join WW1 on the Axis side.

The Libyan War and Student Pan-Islamism: The Edinburgh Declaration of 1911

Co-authored with Filiz Yazicioglu, Jonathan Conlin’s 2022 contribution to IJMES was the first to appear in that journal’s “Foundational Texts” series. It provided an English translation of a 1911 appeal to “the Muslims of the World” produced by students attending Edinburgh University, as well as commentary discussing the appeal’s ideological context.

The British Empire and the Armenian Genocide: Humanitarianism and Imperial Politics from Gladstone to Churchill

This book considers the first attempt to intervene on behalf of the victims of the massacres and to prosecute those responsible for ‘crimes against humanity’ using newly uncovered archival material. In looking at the British response to the events in Anatolia, Michelle Tusan provides a new perspective on the genocide and sheds light on one of the first ever international humanitarian campaigns.

Sa demeure est enveloppée d’allégresse et défendue par les sentences de Mahomat’ : la villa monégasque d’un diplomate iranien au début du XXe siècle

Leila Koochakzadeh‘s chapter (in Amélie Balayre, Claire Le Bras, Marie-Cécile Pineau et Nathan Rousselot’s Le diplomate en représentation (XVIe-XXe siècle) ) looks at one of the aspects of the materiality of diplomatic representation, through the case of the villa Daneshgāh, the personal residence of the the representative of Iran at the League of Nations Arfa’ ol-Dowleh.

Forthcoming from Leila Koochakzadeh

Towards a cultural history of Iranian diplomacy and foreign policy making from the Safavids to the Islamic Republic

Due to be published as a thematic issue of The International History Review, Leila’s joint project with Oliver Bast contributes towards the cultural history of diplomacy of Modern Iran.

The First World War and its Aftermath: The Shaping of the Modern Middle East

Edited by T. G. Fraser this volume considers topics ranging from the war’s effects on women, the experience of the Kurds, sectarianism, the evolution of Islamism, and the importance of prominent intellectuals like Ziya Gökalp and Michel ‘Aflaq.

The Makers of the Modern World

Edited by Alan Sharp, this 32-volume biographical series addresses all of the players at the Paris Peace Conference, from Georges Clemenceau (France) and Woodrow Wilson (USA) to Wellington Koo (China) and Epitácio Pessoa (Brazil).