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Podcast : “Cemal Kafadar Between Past And Present ” – Part 1 & 2

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Ottoman History Podcasts made an interview with Cemal Kafadar in 2 parts. In the podcast, they discuss his intellectual influences in the broadest sense, ranging from the Balkan accents of the Istanbul neighborhood in which he grew up to his early interest in theater and film. Kafadar talks about key events that shaped his worldview, including the Vietnam War and the Iranian Revolution. He also touches on the works of history and literature that inspired him, as well as his first archival forays in the shadow of the 1980 military coup. And in closing, he brings up a question that nagged him from the beginning: “do we do what we do to understand, or do what we do to change the world?”

Cemal Kafadar is the Vehbi Koç Professor of Turkish Studies at Harvard University. A sampling of his published works includes Between Two Worlds, “How Dark is the History of the Night, How Black the Story of Coffee, How Bitter the Tale of Love: The Changing Measure of Leisure and Pleasure in Early Modern Istanbul,” and Kendine Ait Bir Roma.

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