Tales from the Expat Harem: Foreign Women in Modern Turkey

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As the Western world struggles to comprehend the paradoxes of modern Turkey, Tales from the Expat Harem reveals its most personal nuances. This illuminating anthology provides a window into the country from the perspective of thirty-two expatriates from seven different nations—artists, entrepreneurs, Peace Corps volunteers, archaeologists, missionaries, and others—who established lives in Turkey for work, love, or adventure. Through narrative essays covering the last four decades, these diverse women unveil the mystique of the “Orient,” describe religious conflict, embrace cultural discovery, and maneuver familial traditions, customs, and responsibilities. Poignant, humorous, and transcendent, the essays take readers to weddings and workplaces, down cobbled Byzantine streets, into boisterous bazaars along the Silk Road, and deep into the feminine stronghold of steamy Ottoman bathhouses. The outcome is a stunning collection of voices from women suspended between two homes as they redefine their identities and reshape their worldviews.
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About the author

ANASTASIA M. ASHMAN is a career essayist specializing in personal tales of cultural adventure. She has spent ten years working for literary agents and producers of film, television, and Broadway theater. She has been published in Cornucopia, a magazine for connoisseurs of Turkey, Dow Jones’ Far Eastern Economic Review, The Asian Wall Street Journal, and The Village Voice. Born and raised in Berkeley, California, she holds a degree in Classical Greek, Roman, and Near Eastern Archaeology from Bryn Mawr, and lives in Istanbul with her husband, Burc Sahinoglu.

JENNIFER EATON GOKMEN is a writer captivated by the people and customs of Turkey, her home for the past decade. For the past six years Ms. Gokmen has served as International Coordinator for the Kadikoy Municipality Annual Folkdance Festival showcasing two hundred ethnic dancers and musicians each summer. A native of Michigan, she holds a degree in Creative Writing and American and English Literature from Western Michigan University. She has been a regular contributor to the monthly city guide Time Out Istanbul. She lives with her husband, Bilgehan, in Istanbul.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Seal Press
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Published on
Jul 22, 2009
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Pages
300
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ISBN
9781580053303
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Language
English
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Genres
Social Science / Ethnic Studies / General
Travel / Essays & Travelogues
Travel / Middle East / Turkey
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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Lonely Planet Turkey is your passport to the most relevant, up-to-date advice on what to see and skip, and what hidden discoveries await you. Bath in a hammam; explore chaotic and colourful bazaars; or hot air balloon over Cappadocia's honeycomb landscape; all with your trusted travel companion. Get to the heart of Turkey and begin your journey now!

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Important Notice: The digital edition of this book may not contain all of the images found in the physical edition.

For more than two millennia Istanbul has stood at the crossroads of the world, perched at the very tip of Europe, gazing across at the shores of Asia. The history of this city—known as Byzantium, then Constantinople, now Istanbul—is at once glorious, outsized, and astounding. Founded by the Greeks, its location blessed it as a center for trade but also made it a target of every empire in history, from Alexander the Great and his Macedonian Empire, to the Romans and later the Ottomans.

At its most spectacular, Istanbul was re-founded by Emperor Constantine I as New Rome, the capital of the eastern Roman Empire. He dramatically expanded the city, filling it with artistic treasures, and adorning the streets with opulent palaces. Constantine built new walls around it all—walls that were truly impregnable and preserved power, wealth, and withstood any aggressor—walls that still stand for tourists to visit.

From its ancient past to the present, we meet the city through its ordinary citizens—the Jews, Muslims, Italians, Greeks, and Russians who used the famous baths and walked the bazaars, and the rulers who built it up and then destroyed it, including Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the man who christened the city "Istanbul" in 1930. Thomas Madden's entertaining narrative brings to life the city we see today, including the rich splendor of the churches and monasteries that spread throughout the city.

Istanbul draws on a lifetime of study and the latest scholarship, transporting readers to a city of unparalleled importance and majesty that holds the key to understanding modern civilization. In the words of Napoleon Bonaparte, "If the Earth were a single state, Istanbul would be its capital."
International Bestseller: The famed travel writer and author of In Patagonia traverses Australia, exploring Aboriginal culture and song—and humanity’s origins.

Long ago, the creators wandered Australia and sang the landscape into being, naming every rock, tree, and watering hole in the great desert. Those songs were passed down to the Aboriginals, and for centuries they have served not only as a shared heritage but as a living map. Sing the right song, and it can guide you across the desert. Lose the words, and you will die.
 
Into this landscape steps Bruce Chatwin, the greatest travel writer of his generation, who comes to Australia to learn these songs. A born wanderer, whose lust for adventure has carried him to the farthest reaches of the globe, Chatwin is entranced by the cultural heritage of the Aboriginals. As he struggles to find the deepest meaning of these ancient, living songs, he is forced to embark on a much more difficult journey—through his own history—to reckon with the nature of language itself.
 
Part travelogue, part memoir, part novel, The Songlines is one of Bruce Chatwin’s final—and most ambitious—works. From the author of the bestselling In Patagonia and On the Black Hill, a sweeping exploration of a landscape, a people, and one man’s history, it is the sort of book that changes the reader forever.
 
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