Kyle Clark

7th-year Ph.D. student
Email Address:
Office Location: 
Jones Hall

I received my B.A. in 2013 from the University of Arizona, graduating Summa Cum Laude with honors while majoring in History and minoring in Near Eastern Studies and Turkish. While at Arizona, I became interested in Ottoman history, particularly in the Empire’s diplomatic relations with Europe during the nineteenth century. Consequently, for my honor’s thesis, I researched Ottoman diplomatic tactics with the Great Powers of Europe from 1821–1840. In the fall of 2013, I started the University of Chicago’s Middle Eastern Studies M.A. program. I graduated in 2015, after finishing my master’s thesis on Ottoman diplomatic rhetoric with Europe during the ‘Eastern Crisis’ from 1875–1877.

In 2015, I was admitted into Princeton’s Near Eastern Studies’ PhD program. I continue to research Ottoman diplomatic rhetoric with Europe during the nineteenth century, planning to write my dissertation on Ottoman diplomacy with the Great Powers during the 1875–1878 crisis. As the historiography on the Eastern Question examines the issue primarily from Western Europe’s perspective, ignoring Ottoman agency and perspectives, I will analyze how the militarily and economically weaker Ottoman Empire used diplomacy to maintain its sovereignty.

Additionally, I am interested in exploring the changing role of women both in diplomacy and within Ottoman society in the second half of the nineteenth century. Particularly following the ‘Bulgarian Atrocities,’ the status of Ottoman women became a central issue in Ottoman-Western diplomacy, British and American women’s suffrage movements, and finally, how Ottoman women viewed their own role in society. By researching the rhetoric from the Ottoman government and European governments regarding Ottoman women, foreign feminists, and the writings and actions of Ottoman women themselves, I hope to demonstrate the complicated intersection of imperialism, feminism, and westernization in the Eastern Question.

Publications List: 

“The Ottoman Empire’s Use of Women’s Education in Support of Ottomanism and Industrialization during the Tanzimat and Hamidian Eras,” Lights: The MESSA Journal 3, no. 2 (2014): 24 – 31.