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Ottoman Masculinities at Stake: Popular Erotic Narratives in Early Twentieth-Century Ottoman Turkish Literature

Thursday 12 April 2018
Free to visit, drinks after
WHAT's NEW?! Spring Lecture Series
Cleveringaplaats 1
2311 BD Leiden

Masculinities in modernisation

Countless popular erotic narratives in Ottoman Turkish were written and published in the years between 1908 and 1928. Nevertheless, after the alphabet reform of 1928, these narratives were not transcribed into the Latin alphabet and became a marginal branch of popular literature. They have received little attention up until today. This talk will introduce and give examples from Ottoman Turkish popular erotic literature of the twentieth century. It concerns the ways in which newly emerging discourses on gender and sexuality appeared in popular erotic narratives via multiple representations.

Throughout this talk, Müge Özoğlu will discuss different ways to look at the textuality of history as well as the historicity of texts regarding the Ottoman Empire and its erotic fiction. By doing so, she will explore the extent to which modernity challenged discourses concerning gender and sexuality in general and the way in which it became a ‘problem of masculinity’ in twentieth-century Ottoman Turkish literature in particular. Hence, the focus will be on representations of masculinities in relation to the Empire’s modernisation attempts and the ways in which these representations offered alternatives regarding masculine identities in narratives.


About Müge Özoğlu

Müge Özoğlu obtained her BA in Turkish Language and Literature at Yıldız Technical University and her MA in Comparative Literature (Asia/Africa) at SOAS, University of London. Currently, she is a PhD candidate at LUCAS, Leiden University. In her PhD research, she works on twentieth-century popular erotic narratives in Ottoman Turkish concerning representations of Ottoman masculinities and changing discourses on gender and sexuality in relation to modernity. Her primary areas of interest are gender studies, postcolonial criticism, and psychoanalytic theory. 

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