Vladimir Hamed-Troyansky, "Empire of Refugees: North Caucasian Muslims and the Late Ottoman State" (Stanford UP, 2024)


Between the 1850s and World War I, about one million North Caucasian Muslims sought refuge in the Ottoman Empire. This resettlement of Muslim refugees from Russia changed the Ottoman state. Circassians, Chechens, Dagestanis, and others established hundreds of refugee villages throughout the Ottoman Balkans, Anatolia, and the Levant. Most villages still exist today, including what is now the city of Amman. Muslim refugee resettlement reinvigorated regional economies, but also intensified competition over land and, at times, precipitated sectarian tensions, setting in motion fundamental shifts in the borderlands of the Russian and Ottoman empires.

Empire of Refugees: North Caucasian Muslims and the Late Ottoman State (Stanford UP, 2024) reframes late Ottoman history through mass displacement and reveals the origins of refugee resettlement in the modern Middle East. Vladimir Hamed-Troyansky offers a historiographical corrective: the nineteenth-century Ottoman Empire created a refugee regime, predating refugee systems set up by the League of Nations and the United Nations. Grounded in archival research in over twenty public and private archives across ten countries, this book contests the boundaries typically assumed between forced and voluntary migration, and refugees and immigrants, rewriting the history of Muslim migration in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

Dr. Vladimir Hamed-Troyansky is a historian of global migration and forced displacement and Assistant Professor of Global Studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara. His research examines Muslim refugee migration and its role in shaping the modern world. He is the author of Empire of Refugees: North Caucasian Muslims and the Late Ottoman State (Stanford University Press, 2024). Dr. Hamed-Troyansky is currently working on a transnational history of Muslim displacement in the Middle East, Central Asia, and South Asia since 1850. His articles appeared in Past & Present, Comparative Studies in Society and History, International Journal of Middle East Studies, Slavic Review, and Kritika. He received his Ph.D. in History from Stanford University and served as a postdoctoral fellow at Columbia University.

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Aruuke Uran Kyzy

Aruuke Uran Kyzy is a History Ph.D. student at Stanford University in the Transnational, Global, and International (TIG) field with a focus on trans-imperial Naqshbandiyya Sufi networks across the Russian Empire, the Ottoman Empire, and Central Asia near the turn of the 18th century. She holds a bachelor's degree in English Literature and International Relations from Istanbul University. Aruuke also holds an M.A in Comparative Eurasian Studies from the Higher School of Economics, Russia.

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