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Carnival Celebrations in Late Ottoman Istanbul

  • When:
  • Where: Online (YouTubeFacebook)
  • Entry: Free

Event Details

Naz Vardar, a PhD candidate at the Department of History and Stavros Niarchos Centre for Hellenic Studies at Simon Fraser University, will deliver a lecture on Carnival Celebrations in Late Ottoman Istanbul. The event will take place on the Facebook and YouTube platforms on Thursday 22 June 2023 at 7pm, as part of the Greek History and Culture Seminars, offered by the Greek Community of Melbourne.

Drawing from her extensive research, Vardar examines the significance of Carnival Celebrations, locally referred to as Apokries and Baklahorani, in Istanbul during the late Ottoman era. These festivities were particularly prominent in Christian and European neighbourhoods, providing a unique lens through which to explore the diverse social fabric of the city. By problematising nostalgic reminiscences, Vardar offers valuable insights into the manifestations of identities, concerns, and anxieties among ordinary people during this vibrant period.

Vardar's presentation challenges traditional narratives by shedding light on the marginalised tradition of Carnival in Istanbul. Historically, studies on public celebrations in the Ottoman context have predominantly focused on imperial or national events, overshadowing the cultural significance of Carnival. Through her research, Vardar aims to rectify this oversight and contribute to a broader understanding of Istanbul's social and cultural history.

Vardar will examine the transgressive behaviours exhibited during the Carnival Celebrations, such as the subversion of gender roles and ethno-religious identities. By focusing on women's participation, cross-dressing by Muslim men, and the satirical plays that ridiculed specific occupational groups associated with particular communities, Vardar offers a fresh perspective on the complex social dynamics of the era.

Naz Vardar is a PhD candidate at the Department of History and Stavros Niarchos Centre for Hellenic Studies at Simon Fraser University. Her research focuses on the history of carnival festivities in the Ottoman Empire and Modern Greece, exploring questions of identity, memory, and social history. Vardar holds an MA and BA in History from Bogazici University in Istanbul, Turkey. She is widely recognised for her contributions to the field and is currently working on a side project involving Turkish sound recordings of prisoners of war during World War I.

When: Thursday 22 June, 7pm

How: livestreamed on Facebook and YouTube

About Greek History and Culture Seminars 2023

This event belongs to the series, Greek History and Culture Seminars 2023.

The Greek Community of Melbourne hosts a wide range of events, from intimate gatherings to large functions, and celebrates cultural diversity with vibrant festivals, performances, and exhibitions.

SERIES DATES: Thursday, 02/03/2023 – Thursday, 05/10/2023

See all Greek History and Culture Seminars 2023 published events.

  • LANGUAGE English
  • CATEGORY Education
  • EVENT SERIES Seminars > Greek History and Culture Seminars 2023
  • SERIES DATES Thursday, 02/03/2023 – Thursday, 05/10/2023
  • PRESENTED BY The Greek Community of Melbourne
  • PLACE Online (YouTubeFacebook)