Timur Warner HammondSep 27, 2023
Geographies of Connection in Twentieth-Century Istanbul
University of California Press 2023
For centuries, the Mosque of Eyüp Sultan has been one of Istanbul’s most important pilgrimage destinations, in large part because of the figure buried in the tomb at its center: Halid bin Zeyd Ebû Eyûb el-Ensârî, a Companion of the Prophet Muhammad.
In Placing Islam: Geographies of Connection in Twentieth-Century Istanbul (University of California Press, 2023), Timur Hammond argues here, however, that making a geography of Islam involves considerably more. Following practices of storytelling and building projects from the final years of the Ottoman Empire to the early 2010s, Placing Islam shows how different individuals and groups articulated connections among people, places, traditions, and histories to make a place that is paradoxically defined by both powerful continuities and dynamic relationships to the city and wider world. This book provides a rich account of urban religion in Istanbul, offering a key opportunity to reconsider how we understand the changing cultures of Islam in Turkey and beyond.
Reuben Silverman is a Postdoctoral Researcher at Stockholm University’s Institute for Turkish Studies.