Turkish Jews and Their Diasporas: Entanglements and Separations

Publication Year



Co-editor İpek Kocaömer Yosmaoğlu, Ph.D. 2005

This book introduces the reader to the past and present of Jewish life in Turkey and to Turkish Jewish diaspora communities in Israel, Europe, Latin America and the United States. It surveys the history of Jews in the Ottoman Empire and the Turkish Republic, examining the survival of Jewish communities during the dissolution of the empire and their emigration to America, Europe, and Israel. In the cases discussed, members of these communities often sought and seek close connections with Turkey, even if those ‘ties that bind’ are rarely reciprocated by Turkish governments. Contributors also explore Turkish Jewishness today, as it is lived in Israel and Turkey, and as found in ‘places of memory’ in many cities in Turkey, where Jews no longer exist today. 

Table of Contents

  1. Prologue: The Long Twilight--Aron Rodrigue
  2. Introduction: Turkish-Jewish Entanglements from the Ottoman Empire to the Turkish Republic--İpek K. Yosmaoǧlu, Kerem Öktem
  3. Correction to: Creating [Jewish] Sites of Memory in Turkey Where Jews No Longer Exist: From Physical Sites to Virtual Ones—Louis Fishman
  1. Jewish-Turkish Lives in the Late Ottoman Empire, the Turkish Republic, and Israel
    • Front Matter
    • Solidarity and Survival in an Ottoman Borderland: The Jews of Edirne, 1912–1918—Jacob Daniels
    • On the Outside Looking In: Jewish Émigrés and Turkish Citizenship in the Early Republican Period—Devi Mays
    • “The Ties that Bind Us to Turkey”: The Turkish Jewish Diaspora in Europe and Its Relations with the “Home Country”—Corry Guttstadt
    • The Founding of the State of Israel and the Turkish Jews: A View from Israel, 1948–1955—Duygu Atlas
  1. Jewish-Turkish Entanglements in Contemporary Turkey and Israel
    • Front Matter
    • Entangled Sovereignties: Turkish Jewish Spaces in Israel—Kerem Öktem
    • Creating [Jewish] Sites of Memory in Turkey Where Jews No Longer Exist: From Physical Sites to Virtual Ones—Louis Fishman
    • Whitewashing the Armenian Genocide with Holocaust Heroism—Marc David Baer
    • Turkish Jews in an Unwelcoming Public Space—Özgür Kaymak
    • Epilogue: “Aprontaremos Las Validjas” Shall We Start Packing the Suitcases?—Rıfat N. Bali


Reviews and Endorsements

“Laying bare the twin myths of Ottoman tolerance and Turkish-Jewish friendship upon which so much of Turkish-Jewish history writing was founded, this volume demonstrates how a dwindling Jewish community and growing antisemitism in Turkey are now unraveling these myths before our very eyes. Full of sobering and incisive reflections on Ottoman and Turkish Jewish lives past and present, this book has much to offer not only to specialists but also to anyone interested in the processes of minoritization, displacement and diaspora in the modern era.”   Julia Phillips Cohen, Vanderbilt University, USA

“An engaging and erudite exploration of identity politics in the late Ottoman era and modern Turkey. The story of Turkish Jews and their diaspora reflects the twists and turns, paradoxes, entanglements, and struggles shaping the country from the late 19th century till our day. The authors behind this volume have done a tremendous service to all scholars of modern Turkey.”Dimitar Bechev, University of Oxford, UK

Series Title
Modernity, Memory and Identity in South-East Europe (MOMEIDSEE)
Palgrave Macmillan
Cham, Switzerland