Christine Philliou

Research Expertise and Interest

Mediterranean, Modern Greece and Turkey, Middle East, Ottoman Empire political and social history, Turkey and Greece as parts of the post-Ottoman world

Research Description

Christine Philliou specializes in the political, social and cultural history of the Ottoman Empire and modern Greece and Turkey as parts of the post-Ottoman world. Her first book, Biography of an Empire: Governing Ottomans in an Age of Revolution (University of California Press, 2011), examined the changes in Ottoman governance resulting from the Greek Revolution and leading up to the Tanzimat reforms of the mid-nineteenth century. It did so using the vantage point of Phanariots, a Greek Orthodox Christian elite that was intimately involved in the day-to-day work of governance even though structurally excluded from the Ottoman state. Her second book, Turkey: A past against History, turned to the question of political opposition and how it was imagined in the late Ottoman Empire and early Turkish Republic. Using the political, personal and intellectual/artistic itinerary of a Turkish dissident writer, the book examines the internal fissures in Turkish belonging in the twentieth century. Her current book, "The Post-Ottoman World," looks at the death of the Ottoman Empire through the lens of Greek and Turkish nation-state formation in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Her interests and other publications have had to do with political and cultural interfaces in the "Greek" and "Turkish" Mediterranean and the larger arenas of the Middle East and Balkans in the early modern and modern eras.

She is the recipient, most recently, of the ACLS-Burkhardt Fellowship (2018-2021), the Townsend Humanities Fellowship (2018-2019), the Stanford Humanities Center Fellowship (2018-2019), and the Stanford Center for Behavioral Sciences Fellowship (2020-2021). She has also organized numerous conferences and intensive seminars in Greece [Chios (2000); Samos (2001); Crete (2017)] as well as at Columbia and UC Berkeley. 

She teaches lectures on the Ottoman Empire (1300-1922) and the Middle East (7th century-present); undergraduate seminars on the "post-Ottoman World," The Ottoman Empire in World War One,  Culture and Migration in the Eastern Mediterranean, and a graduate seminar on comparative empires, “The Ottoman Empire and its Rivals.”

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