The Empire in the City: Arab Provincial Capitals in the late Ottoman Empire

German Orient Institute, Beirut

This volume includes various contributions presented at an international conference held in Beirut in April 1999. The paper’s main aim is a reconstruction of aspects of urban life in the late Ottoman Empire, with a local focus on cities such as Beirut, Cairo, Aleppo, Damascus and Baghdad. Without disregarding European influence on urban life in the 18th and 19th centuries, the papers exceed many accepted notions to the extent that they also emphasize the local, namely the Ottoman influences as an entity separate to the European impacts. In order to pursue these approaches manifold sources are used and examined, such as printed and archival materials, city maps, architectural designs, photographs, wall paintings, and others. By making use of material sources that represent the embodiment of social values embedded in architecture this piece of work uses an innovative approach to the combined study of architectural and social urban history.  


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