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Norman Stone On Istanbul

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In this talk from October 2011 the historian Norman Stone, who has lived in Turkey since 1997, took us on a journey through the country's turbulent history, from the arrival of the Seljuks in Anatolia in the 11th century to the modern republic applying for EU membership in the 21st. Along the way we met rapacious leaders such as Genghis Khan and Tamerlane, Sultan Süleyman the Magnificent and Kemal Atatürk, the reforming genius and founder of modern Turkey.

At its height, the Ottoman Empire stretched from the Atlantic coast of Morocco to Indonesia. It was a superpower that brought Islam to the gates of Vienna. Stone examined the reasons for the empire’s long decline and showed how it gave birth to the modern Turkish republic, where east and west, religion and secularism, tradition and modernity still form vibrant elements of national identity.

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