You read a lot about “Orientalism,” that is, the often odd ways in which Westerners tried to understand predominantly Middle Eastern peoples and cultures....

You read a lot about “Orientalism,” that is, the often odd ways in which Westerners tried to understand predominantly Middle Eastern peoples and cultures. You don’t read a lot about good Western scholarship on predominately Middle Eastern peoples and cultures. All of which is to say we tend to focus on how Europeans got the Middle East wrong, not how the got it right. But, as Anders Ingram points out in his excellent new book Writing the Ottomans: Turkish History in Early Modern England (Palgrave-Macmillan, 2015) they often got it right, despite their “Orientalist” prejudices. Listen in.

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