Emine O. Evered, Empire and Education Under the Ottomans. Politics, Reform and Resistance from the Tanzimat to the Young Turks (I.B. Tauris, 2012)
Once hailed as ‘the eternal state’, the Ottoman Empire was in decline by the end of the nineteenth century, finally collapsing under the pressures of World War I. Yet its legacies are still apparent, and few have had more impact than those of its schools and educational policies. “Empire and Education under the Ottomans” analyses the Empire’s educational politics from the mid-nineteenth century, amidst the Tanzimat reform period, until “The Young Turk Revolution in 1908″. Through a focus on the regional impact of decrees from Istanbul, Emine O. Evered unravels the complexities of the era, demonstrating how educational changes devised to strengthen the Empire actually hastened its demise. This book is the first history of education in the Ottoman Middle East to evaluate policies in the context of local responses and resistance, and includes the first published English translation of the watershed 1869 Ottoman Education Law. A stimulating and impressively-researched study, it represents an important new addition to the historiography of the Ottoman Empire and will be essential for those researching its lasting legacy.