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Becoming OttomansSephardi Jews and Imperial Citizenship in the Modern Era$
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Julia Phillips Cohen

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199340408

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199340408.001.0001

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On the Streets and in the Synagogue

On the Streets and in the Synagogue

Celebrating 1892 as Ottomans

(p.45) 2 On the Streets and in the Synagogue
Becoming Ottomans

Julia Phillips Cohen

Oxford University Press

Chapter 2 analyzes Ottoman Jews’ participation in two different commemorations of the year 1492. In the first case, Jews decided to treat the four-hundredth anniversary of their ancestors’ expulsion from Spain as a cause for patriotic celebration, transforming it into a holiday marking their arrival in Ottoman lands. This celebration served a dual purpose. Its architects hoped to encourage Ottoman Jews to honor their state and to persuade the sultan to offer safe haven to Jews fleeing persecution in their own day. The second commemorative event featured in this chapter honored a journey to different shores in 1492. This was the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition. As Jewish merchants crossed the Atlantic to represent their state in Chicago, Ottoman Jewish journalists sought to instill in their readers a sense of pride in their coreligionists’ activities abroad and to reflect on what it meant to call their empire home.

Keywords:   1492, invented tradition, patriotism from below, imperial holidays, travel, Chicago World’s Fair of 1893, Easternness, Izmir, Salonica, Istanbul

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