For Christ or Country? Teaching “Masons” in European Turkey

Thursday, January 3, 2019: 1:30 PM
Stevens C-4 (Hilton Chicago)
Nevila Pahumi, University College London
In this paper I will examine the Kyrias School for Girls in Görice, Albania, at the turn of the twentieth century, to understand the shifting dynamics of institutional power that accompanied the rise of cultural activism encouraged by Ottoman liberalism in this contested part of Europe. The paper will examine the ideological background of women’s education and American mission activity, how missionaries laid out a network in Ottoman Europe, and how the Kyrias School’s Albanian Protestant staff pursued actions raising conflicts between concepts of Christianity and nation. The paper will conclude with an assessment of how this encouraged local power players to exercise agency at a time of European scrutiny, American competition, and subsequent Ottoman reform and retrenchment.
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