Sunday, December 17, 2006

Prof. Stanford Shaw dies

American Historian, Known for his Work on Ottomans, Dies

Known for his works on the field of Ottoman history, Prof. Stanford Shaw died yesterday.A statement made by the Turkish Academy of Science said that Shaw, who was made an honorary member of the academy on Dec. 16, 2005, and who was granted the ‘Medal and Certificate of Service’ in September along with Prof. Halil Inalcik due to his contributions to Turkish history passed away at the age of 76. . . Shaw, the first historian to benefit from the Ottoman archives, demonstrated that the Ottoman state granted the Jews who had been oppressed in both Western and Eastern Europe the right to take refuge in the Ottoman lands. As a result, the Jews, who escaped the tyranny in Europe, helped the Ottoman economy to develop and made contributions to the diplomatic and cultural life of the Ottoman Empire. In his 2000-page work on the Turkish War of Independence, Shaw talked about how the Turks were able to get rid of the European exploitation and economic hegemony partly due to Ataturk’s charismatic leadership and partly because of the weakness of the Allies. Shaw also underlines in the work that the Ottoman administrative reforms of 1839 fell short of reaching success because it almost completely imitated the Western institutions and when the reforms were adapted to the Ottoman realities of the day, the modernization efforts turned out to have long-lasting effects. Professor Shaw, whose house was bombed in 1977 when he was working for the University of California, had also proved the Armenian claims of an alleged genocide wrong by presenting various documents from the period.
Anadolu News Agency (AA),
December 16, 2006

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