Jewish Life in Twenty-First-Century Turkey

Jewish Life in Twenty-First-Century Turkey

The Other Side of Tolerance
Marcy Brink-Danan
Distribution: World
Publication date: 12/06/2011
ISBN: 978-0-253-00526-7
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Turkey is famed for a history of tolerance toward minorities, and there is a growing nostalgia for the "Ottoman mosaic." In this richly detailed study, Marcy Brink-Danan examines what it means for Jews to live as a tolerated minority in contemporary Istanbul. Often portrayed as the "good minority," Jews in Turkey celebrate their long history in the region, yet they are subject to discrimination and their institutions are regularly threatened and periodically attacked. Brink-Danan explores the contradictions and gaps in the popular ideology of Turkey as a land of tolerance, describing how Turkish Jews manage the tensions between cosmopolitanism and patriotism, difference as Jews and sameness as Turkish citizens, tolerance and violence.

Author Bio

Marcy Brink-Danan is Dorot Assistant Professor of Judaic Studies and Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Brown University.


“Makes important contributions to the fields of Turkish studies, Jewish studies, and ethnographic writing. . . . Very sophisticated, . . . well written, and accessible.”
 — Esra Özyürek, author of Nostalgia for the Modern: State Secularism and Everyday Politics in Turkey

“Succeeds in applying anthropology to an urbanized and diverse community while deftly unraveling the dilemmas faced by Jews in Istanbul as they balance cosmopolitanism with maintaining a sense of who they are.”
 — Harvey E. Goldberg, Hebrew University

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Table of Contents

Preface: The Ends and Beginnings of 1992

1. Tolerance, Difference, and Citizenship
2. Cosmopolitan Signs: Names as Foreign and Local
3. The Limits of Cosmopolitanism
4. Performing Difference: Turkish Jews on The National Stage
5. Intimate Negotiations: Turkish Jews Between Stages
6. The One Who Writes Difference: Inside Secrecy