Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Hezbollah and Healthcare in Lebanon

"Continuing Tradition: Hezbollah and Healthcare in Lebanon"
by Jessi Donnelly
File: Supporters of Lebanon’s Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah wave Hezbollah flags as they listen to him via a screen, Aug. 16, 2013. (REUTERS/Ali Hashisho)

Since October 1997, Hezbollah remains identified by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Counterterrorism as a “foreign terrorist organization.”[1] In the West, that designation represents fear, intolerance, and danger. And yet, Hezbollah provides millions of dollars towards Lebanese social care each year. Though Hezbollah’s funding comes from sources such as drug cartels, nearly 50% of all spending, or $250-500 million dollars are spent yearly on social services including hospitals and healthcare.[2] There is a disparity in the two images of terror and health.
Hezbollah, according to Joseph Alagha in his book Hizbullah’s Identity Construction, has evolved “based on an ideological, social, political, and economical mixture in a special Lebanese, Arab, and Islamic context.”[3] As a deeply rooted Islamic group, though extremist and prone to acts of terror, Hezbollah’s humanitarian work for the people of Lebanon is deeply rooted in the centuries old practice of social service and zakat among Muslims as a part of the larger narrative of Islamic faith. Scholarly discourse on Hezbollah has focused more intently on this complexity overtime, allowing for a more insightful view of the organization’s activities beyond its axiom of terror.
Early scholarly discussions of Hezbollah were intent on analyzing its impact as one of the “few terrorist organizations” to have “global reach.”[4] Daniel Byman, a professor of Security Studies at Georgetown University, wrote in 2003 for Foreign Affairs, “Given the organization’s record of bloodshed and hostility, the question is not whether Hezbollah should be stopped; it is how.”[5] Hala Jaber, in The Brown Journal of World Affairs, argued that Hezbollah had become “a synonym for terror.”[6] The consensus was that the radical Islamist group was an immense threat negatively impacting the Lebanese people and would continue to do so until being wiped out by anti-terror forces. However, even just years later, upon further scholarship, the discussion about Hezbollah changed into one focused on understanding the inherent complexities of an organization focused on both militant action and social welfare.
 “Hezbollah – Lebanon’s Party of God – is many things,” Matthew Levitt explained in his book, Hezbollah: The Global Footprint of Lebanon’s Party of God.[7] Levitt highlighted these different “multiple identities” that Hezbollah assumes, arguing that the organization is “one of the dominant political parties in Lebanon, as well as a social and religious movement catering first and foremost (though not exclusively) to Lebanon’s Shi’a community.”[8] Levitt’s work focused on Hezbollah’s thirty years of history and in particular, its history of global attacks and acts of terrorism. This perspective was perhaps due to his area of expertise as a terrorist and intelligence expert employed by the government as a counterintelligence advisor.  However, his point that Hezbollah has multiple identities is compelling, despite his focus on their identity as a terrorist organization.
Hezbollah’s history, beginning in the 1980’s, is popularly and not altogether incorrectly understood as one of terrorism, as Levitt suggested. It is understanding the complexity of the group that has gained academic focus in recent scholarship. Augustus Richard Norton’s Hezbollah: A Short History emphasized the evolution of the group over time in his succinct history. Norton, an anthropologist who studied the Middle East for three decades, suggested that it is imperative to understand Hezbollah from several perspectives. Understanding should come from the individual level of popular support from Shi’i Muslims in Lebanon, and also at the transnational level where the organization can be viewed as one of political force and militant action.[9] By looking at the history of Hezbollah from these sometimes counterintuitive perspectives, Norton argued, the complex placement of the organization is made clear and becomes more than “the greatest guerilla group in the world.”[10]
 In reality, the organization also serves as a social service organization for Lebanon. As Brian R. Early argued in his article, “Larger than a Party, Yet Smaller than a State,” Hezbollah is also “Lebanon’s largest non-state provider of healthcare and social services” and shouldn’t be simply dismissed as simply a terrorist organization.[11] Early’s work emphasized the alternative identities that Levitt’s work mentioned, and discussed the importance of Hezbollah’s relationship with the Lebanese state. Further, Early contended that Hezbollah has intentionally worked to assume the identity of an “Islamic welfare state” and used millions of dollars of funds provided by Iran to ensure a “complete social welfare system within the Shi’ite communities” within Lebanon.[12] This alternate identity, one of social service, seems oppositional to that of a terrorist identity, and yet, the proof is undeniable that Hezbollah is more than simply a group of extreme terrorists.
In a somewhat drastic shift from her earlier argument, Hala Jaber’s later work, Hezbollah, highlighted the programs created by Hezbollah’s Health Committee including hospitals and schools. As Jaber noted, Lebanon lacks state welfare programs and almost all citizens lack medical insurance.[13] To meet this social need, the Health Committee “opened more than forty health centers and clinics in South Beruit, Lebanon” and other health centers throughout the country since the 1980’s.[14] Jaber’s book, written towards a general audience and based on interviews conducted with Hezbollah leadership, argued that Hezbollah is intentionally shifting to be seen as more moderate and less extremist. Joseph Alagha also argued that Hezbollah shifted ideological focus to that of a “pragmatic political focus.”[15]
In his work, The Shifts in Hizbullah’s Ideology: Religious Ideology, Political Ideology, and Political Program, Alagha posited that Hezbollah began with a radical religious identity, but over time has intentionally transformed its ideology from rigorously Islamic exclusivism to a more compromising liberal stance as it began program of “enrollment in Lebanese domestic political life.”[16] Despite or perhaps because of this shift, Alagha pointed out that Hezbollah considers an important aspect of “its religious task” to be the necessity of “providing medical care and hospitalization.”[17] The religious ideology behind Hezbollah’s updated methods of engaging in zakat (through creation of healthcare) no less complicated than their position. While the social welfare work is religiously based, it also serves as a legitimizing point that Hezbollah is more than a destructive force. Further, as Alagha pointed out, it also maintains their past legitimacy as an Islamic group while they shift their ideology from radical to increasingly liberal.[18]
As these realizations about Hezbollah’s shifting nature materialized, the discussion about Hezbollah changed. It was no longer enough to label Hezbollah as simply an organization of extreme terror. Rather, voices in the conversation began to question Hezbollah’s identity as a legitimate political organization. The conversation became even more interesting when prominent voices from within Hezbollah itself contributed monographs for consideration. In Hizbullah: The Story from Within, Naim Qassem asserted that Hezbollah should be seen as legitimate and as “primarily” an Islamic political party and further, as a “moderate” social movement in Lebanon, rather than a terrorist organization.[19] Further, he contended it must be understood “the Party’s practical path is interconnected with the principles of the faith it carries.”[20]
These statements, perhaps somewhat outlandish in light of previous scholarship, make more sense when it is made clear that Naim Qassem is a Shi’i scholar and politician from Lebanon. He is also second in command of Hezbollah as it’s acting secretary general. The importance of Qassem’s work however, rests in its international publication and wide consideration as a book offering “exceptional insight into the principles, objectives, and worldview” by academic reviewers.[21] With inside voices such as Qassem contributing to the legitimate conversation regarding Hezbollah, it was perhaps impossible to consider the discourse anything but complex. It seemed acceptable to consider Hezbollah’s non-military actions as a genuine reason to not dismiss its other identities.
One aspect of scholarly discussion focused on how Lebanon and its people responded to the increasingly complex multiple identities of Hezbollah. Kevin Simon, in “Hezbollah: Terror in Context,” found that as much as 38% of Lebanon considered Hezbollah favorably and to be a moderate political party.[22] Further, Simon argued that the specific reason Hezbollah is so popular is due to its “very successful implementation of social services.”[23] By spending upwards of 50% of its funds, gained legitimately through zakat donations or illicitly from drug trades, Hezbollah has become “indispensable” to the Lebanese people.[24] The focus was no longer on Hezbollah’s identity as a terrorist organization, but rather as its identity as a provider of healthcare, social programs, and welfare as a complex, political organization.
Shawn Flannigan and Mounah Abdel-Samad continued this focus in their article, “Hezbollah’s Social Jihad: Nonprofits as Resistance Organizations.” Flannigan and Abdel-Samad also claimed that Hezbollah’s popularity within Lebanon stemmed directly from its social services and health support. Further, they argued that the motivating factor of these provided services was based on “social jihad” that was “integral to Hezbollah’s struggle against Israel and the West” which had been one of the organization’s founding ideologies.[25] Further, like the earlier sentiments of Alagha and Haber, Flannigan and Abdel-Samad agreed that Hezbollah intentionally used their healthcare and social programs to increase their political legitimacy. They suggested, “Hezbollah’s health and social services primarily benefit Lebanon’s Shi’ite population and are typically not advertised to the Lebanese population at large except following an Israeli attack.”[26] While the zakat is fundamental to Hezbollah, its successful politicizing of welfare programs indicates a highly complex nature, previously unearthed by scholarly analysis.
Hezbollah and its connection to healthcare in Lebanon had morphed into its own topic of discourse in the academic world. James B. Love, in his work, “Hezbollah: A Charitable Revolution,” argued that the social service and healthcare programs of Hezbollah are a driving force behind its success.[27] According to Love, in accordance with both Haber and Alagha, this was a strategic move by the organization to meet both its religious and political ideological needs. Love stated, “Hezbollah established a solid popular support base by leveraging the needs and injustices of the Lebanese Shi’a.”[28]
In addition, and most importantly to the academic discourse concerning Hezbollah, Love connected this strategic move to the Islamic institution of zakat, noting that it is both a means of legitimizing the organization and as a possible means of funding.[29] In addition to adhering to the third pillar of Islam, Hezbollah has created social welfare programs to receive additional funding from Muslims. This funding can then be funneled back into healthcare or perhaps into other activities. Love concluded his work with a warning that the danger of Hezbollah is that its “model” could be perpetuated by further jihadi movements and “unique, proven, and exportable.”[30] Hezbollah’s legacy as a terrorist organization may very well take on new meaning for future discourse if Love’s premonition is correct.
The history of Hezbollah is indeed one of terrorist acts and militant Islam. Its ideological basis as a religious organization however, evolved into multiple identities, as Levitt suggested. However, the initial analysis that Hezbollah was nothing more than a radically dangerous Islamic organization focused on terror dismissed its complexity. Scholarly discourse, which had at first simply focused on the threat of Hezbollah as organization with a global reach as the “A-team of terror” left much of the organization’s outreach unanalyzed. Yet, relatively quickly, the academic world shifted its discussion from security and Hezbollah as terror to one of prominent social service. The dichotomy of terror and health was one worth exploring and the complexity of the situation was, and continues to be, one of legitimate scholarship.
The importance of understanding Hezbollah’s multiple identities cannot be understated. It will never fully be free of its terrorist mantle and more importantly, that history should not be forgotten. Yet, Hezbollah is also the force that provides healthcare to 500,000 Lebanese.[31] The intention behind that healthcare provision is both religious, as a means to engage in zakat, the third pillar of Islam, and also political as a means to “increase its popularity and prove its competence while simultaneously highlighting the ineffectiveness of the Lebanese government.”[32] It is both charitable and intentionally political. By understanding the complexity of Hezbollah and its social, political, and military identities within Lebanon and worldwide, scholars will further provide further illumination into the popularity of these organizations. Particularly in the West, it is imperative to understand the motivations and intertwined religiously political nature of “state-less governments” such as Hezbollah. 

Alagha, Joseph. Hizbullah’s Identity Construction. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 2011.
Alagha, Joseph. The Shifts in Hizbullah's Ideology: Religious Ideology, Political Ideology, and Political Program. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 2006.
Byman, Daniel. "Should Hezbollah Be Next?" Foreign Affairs 82, no. 6 (2003): 54-66.
Early, Brian R. “’Larger than a Party, yet Smaller than a State’: Locating Hezbollah’s Place Within Lebanon’s State and Society,” World Affairs 168, no. 3 (2006): 115.
Flanigan, Shawn T. and Mounah Abdel-Samad, “Hezbollah’s Social Jihad.” Middle East Policy 16, no. 2 (2009): 112-137.
Jaber, Hala. Hezbollah: Born with a Vengance. New York: Columbia University Press, 1997.
Jaber, Hala. "Consequences of Imperialism: Hezbollah and the West." The Brown Journal of World Affairs 6, no. 1 (1999): 163-76.
Levitt, Matthew. Hezbollah: The Global Footprint of Lebanon’s Party of God. New York: I.B. Tauris, 2006.
Love, James B. Hezbollah: A Charitable Revolution. Army Command and General Staff Coll Fort Leavenworth KS School of Advanced Military Studies, 2008. http://www.soc.mil/Swcs/SWEG/AY_2008/Love,%20J%202008.pdf
Norton, Augustus Richard. Hezbollah: A Short History. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2007.
Salwen, Sarah. Journal of Church and State 48, no. 4 (2006): 884-85. http://www.jstor.org.libpublic3.library.isu.edu/stable/23921491.
Simon, Kevin, "Hezbollah: Terror in Context." 2012 AHS Capstone Projects. Paper 18. 2012.
U.S. State Department. “Foreign Terrorist Organizations.” Bureau of Counterterrorism. 2016. http://www.state.gov/j/ct/rls/other/des/123085.htm

[1] U.S. State Department, “Foreign Terrorist Organizations,” Bureau of Counterterrorism, 2016. http://www.state.gov/j/ct/rls/other/des/123085.htm
[2] Kevin Simon, "Hezbollah: Terror in Context,” 2012 AHS Capstone Projects, Paper 18, 2012,
[3]  Joseph Alagha, Hizbullah’s Identity Construction (Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 2011), 19.
[4] Daniel Byman, "Should Hezbollah Be Next?" Foreign Affairs 82, no. 6 (2003): 54.
[5] Byman, 55.
[6] Hala Jaber, "Consequences of Imperialism: Hezbollah and the West," The Brown Journal of World Affairs 6, no. 1 (1999): 163-76.
[7] Matthew Levitt, Hezbollah: The Global Footprint of Lebanon’s Party of God (New York: I.B. Tauris, 2006), 8.
[8] Levitt, 8.
[9] Augustus R. Norton, Hezbollah: A Short History (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2007), 4-6.
[10] Norton, 140.
[11] Brian R. Early, “’Larger than a Party, yet Smaller than a State’: Locating Hezbollah’s Place Within Lebanon’s State and Society,” World Affairs 168, no. 3 (2006): 115.
[12] Early, 120.
[13] Hala Jaber, Hezbollah (New York: Columbia University Press, 1997), 158.
[14] Jaber, 158-162.
[15] Joseph Alagha, The Shifts in Hizbullah’s Ideology: Religious Ideology, Political Ideology, and Political Program, (Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 2006), 13.
[16] Alagha, 15.
[17] Alagha, 241.
[18] Ibid.
[19] Naim Qassem, Hizbollah: The Story from Within, trans. Dalia Khahil (London: Saqi Press, 2010).
[20] Qassem, 6.
[21] Sarah Salwen, Journal of Church and State 48, no. 4 (2006): 884. http://www.jstor.org.libpublic3.library.isu.edu/stable/23921491.
[22] Kevin, Simon. "Hezbollah: Terror in Context," 2012 AHS Capstone Projects, Paper 18, 2012, 3.
[23] Simon, 6.
[24] Simon, 7.
[25] Shawn T. Flanigan and Mounah Abdel-Samad, “Hezbollah’s Social Jihad,” Middle East Policy 16, no. 2 (2009): 112-13.
[26] Flanigan and Abdel Samad, 114.
[27] James B. Love, Hezbollah: A Charitable Revolution (Fort Leavenworth, KS: School of Advanced Military Studies
United States Army Command and General Staff College, 2008), 3.
[28] Love, iii.
[29] Love, 95.
[30] Love, iii.
[31] Simon, 4.
[32] Flanigan and Abdel Samad, 114.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Ottoman and European Women’s Fashion Exchange in the 19th Century

Brooklyn Wichmann, “Ottoman and European Women’s Fashion Exchange in the 19th Century”

HIST 4405-Modern Middle East
Idaho State University

Brooklyn Wichmann with her handmade garments, illustrating 
19th century European and Ottoman women's fashion.

The clothing a person wears is often judged by others and gives a first impression. With this in mind, clothing based on ethnicity and religious practice is often judged by those on the “outside” as exotic, peculiar, or even monumental. This occurs by both sides of the judgement. The Ottomans and Europe had been trade partners for centuries by the time of the Ottoman’s dissolution; and with trade of material goods comes cultural exchange. A particular aspect of cultural exchange that is often overlooked is the exchange of fashion. European women became fascinated with the Ottoman Empire’s dress as early as the sixteenth century. The fascination continued into the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. In this essay Ottoman and Western women’s fashion during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries and the cultural influence on one another will be examined.
            European interest in Ottoman women’s clothing was a topic beginning with first contact. Historian Kass McGann states that the height of the fashion for the Ottomans was the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries; and that this was the Golden Age of the empire and a great time for women in general.[1] McGann’s Ottoman Turkish Women’s Getting Dressed Guide discusses the distinction between what clothing was for Ottoman women and what has now become costume.[2] Her guide lists what was worn by the women and in what order each piece was worn.  As stated this essay highlights the nineteenth and twentieth centuries but as Historian Jennifer Scarce points out “Women’s fashion did not remain static but continued to evolve at a steady pace . . .[and] changes are seen more in subtlety of detail rather than in drastic innovation of shape and cut.”[3] The primary pieces of clothing for Ottomans were the undershirt (gömlek), underpants (cakşir), trousers (şalvar), coat (kaftan), vest (yelek), interior garment (entari), and a long loose robe (ferace).[4] The importance of these garments was that they were simple in construction; all created using rectangles, triangles, or squares. There was little to no contours that revealed the shape of the body.[5]
 Scarce discusses that while the normal garments of the Ottomans consisted of simple shapes, there are surviving garments from the 1870s that show darts inserted in the waist of the  entari to create the fashionable European shape. In addition, this particular garment had a sloping shoulder seam not seen before, and a cut out armhole. These elements come together to form a more modern westernized dress that clung to the body.[6] Scarce illustrates that the fashion of Ottoman women naturally developed through the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, but in the nineteenth century the European influence was starting to take shape. She continues that the European influence accelerated the pace of change and by the early twentieth century upper class circles had adopted the “smart European dress.”[7] In contrast to Ottoman women, European women’s layers were more conforming to the body. A European woman’s dressing guide lists the following components for women’s dress: chemise, drawers, corset, corset cover, petticoat, understructure, petticoats, bodice, and overskirt.[8] As indicated already, Ottoman women had fewer layers that were far less constricting. The less restrictive qualities of Ottoman clothing could indicate why exoticism developed in Europe.
Examining portraits of Ottoman and European women, helps discern the appeal of each regional style. These portraits of Tsarina Alexandra Feodorovna (left) and Abdullah Freres (right) show the quintessential fashions of both cultures.[9] These women were chosen because their clothing represents the epitome of late nineteenth and early twentieth-century fashion for their regions and cultures. Tsarina Alexandra is a well-known woman which illustrates European women participated in the public sphere displaying themselves through fashion. The unknown Ottoman woman illustrates that while the photographer may know who she is, society was not allowed to know who she was because women were supposed to remain hidden. The secrecy is evident in the clothing which covers the entire body.
Alexandra’s dress bodice is fitted to the waist with a fuller skirt, which was the style of the late nineteenth century. The gown Tsarina Alexandra wears is also formal court attire for Russia, which adds to the luxury that Europe portrayed to Ottoman women.[11] The unnamed Turkish woman wears a traditional costume of the Ottoman Empire. Since she is outside her home she is wearing the ferace, or oversized covering that was required by Islam. We don’t see what is underneath but the ferace itself illustrates tight-fitting garments were not the norm for the Ottoman Empire. Historian Julia Clancy-Smith discusses the image Ottoman women instilled in the minds of the West. The paintings and photographs of the nineteenth century portray women, Clancy-Smith argues, as exotic beauties hidden away.[12] As shown, the woman does appear hidden away through the veil and folds of fabric.
On the other hand, Alexandra is not hidden away. She exudes the imperialism of the West and the fashion of the times. Historian Onur Inal states that “European dress represented the extrovert character of British women by revealing more of the contours of the body than did the dress of Ottoman women.”[13] The statement reveals appeal of western dress to the Ottomans. It took a strong extrovert woman to wear a low cut, tight fitting bodice; and it took an even stronger woman to carry it well. This is not to say that the Ottoman woman were not strong, quite the contrary. The Ottoman women’s clothing were dictated by “sumptuary regulations based on Islamic Law and social norms, but susceptible to change.”[14] By rejecting the clothing society dictates to them was a direct rejection of cultural norms. In summary, the appeal of each style to its counter-partner was that it was different. It was a rejection of the clothing society dictated to them. In essence, it was a way for women to rebel.
Historian Einav Rabinovitch-Fox states: “the Oriental style marked a move from the S-shaped, frail look that dominated the Victorian period, towards a straighter, more comfortable, simpler style that promoted a more sensual ideal of female beauty.”[15] She continues that women’s rights activists were seeking a new look for women in the nineteenth century that would convey their ideals. She illustrates this point by discussing that these activists found that the Middle East was equated with feminine and the West masculine. By utilizing the fashionable Turkish trousers (şalvars) they could achieve their goals. The Turkish trousers were believed to be part of this new look for activists because it gave them comfort and movement but would still be regarded as feminine when using the west’s equation of middle east equals feminine. They would then not be portrayed as trying to be masculine and rebellious but instead embracing their sex and femininity.[16] Fox illustrates a monumental influence the Ottomans had on Western dress. The influence continues through important artists such as Paul Poiret and Leon Bakst.
Historian Christine Ruane discusses in detail the Ottoman influence on Leon Bakst in The Empire’s New Clothes. Leon Bakst was a Russian designer for the Ballet Russes during the late nineteenth century. Ruane states that he took trips to the Middle East to influence his designs. She continues that the hearts of Parisian audiences were stolen with the “Oriental” costume designs. She believes this to be another example of the West’s obsession with the East and its “binary oppositions – masculine/feminine, civilized/barbaric, familiar/exotic, rational/erotic...”[17] These “Oriental” ballets had a dual purpose, Ruane claims; to entertain and to act as intermediary between east and west, because Russia was both Asian and European.[18] The importance of Ottoman influence on Bakst is observed by British photographer Cecil Beaton, as he states it was “a fashion world that had been dominated by corsets, lace, feathers, and pastel shades soon found itself in a city that overnight had become a seraglio of vivid colours, harem skirts, beads, fringes, and voluptuousness.”[19]
Like Bakst, Paul Poiret was another European designer that took heavy influence from Ottoman women. Historian James Laver contends that Poiret used the wave of orientalism to establish a new modern women. Laver describes the scene as a sweeping away of mauves’, corsets, bell skirts and structure. In its place, Turkish trousers and draping gowns became the new norm for elite women.[20] Onur claims: “It is remarkable that at the same time when şalvar and entari became a fashion of high society in Britain, it was simultaneously replaced by European dress among the elite women in the Ottoman Empire.”[21] There is minimal scholarship on who designed what for the Ottoman women, but as Onur points out that foreign tailors and dressmakers took up residence in Istanbul to capitalize on their new audiences.[22] This was not only for the women of the empire but during the early nineteenth century Sultan Muhmud II embarked on reform for modernization that included clothing changes.[23]
Historian Serap Kavas discusses that twentieth-century Turkish Republican elites saw their style of dress as backward and wished to revive it according to modern fashion. He states that his study “investigates the crucial role of physical appearance in the path towards the development of the country.”[24] This modernization included banning the fez and veiling.[25] It is evident from Abdullah Freres’s photograph in the late nineteenth century that veiling continued. Onur also points out that Mahmud II’s reforms did not have any significant impact on women’s clothing.[26] Kavas counters Onur by stating that while there was no legislation dictating dress for women, the women still flocked to adopt western attire. He states this occurred first with the palace elite. There was even talk of adopting the corset, which was an unfamiliar item for the Ottomans. An article printed in an Ottoman newspaper stated: “Given how women dress in the civilized world, we will come to realize that the corset has become an essential component of a dress.”[27] The shift from traditional to western attire is evident in the following two photographs of Ottoman garments.

Westernization did take hold in the Ottoman Empire through clothing. The difference between men and women’s fashion is that women adopted by choice. As mentioned previously, aside from the veil no edicts were passed explicitly stating what women should wear, but there were edicts on men’s dress.
            In this essay Ottoman and Western women’s fashion during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries and the cultural influence on one another have been examined. There are contradictions in the scholarship on women’s clothing in the Ottoman Empire. These contradictions include that some believed Ottoman women to fully retain their traditional clothing, while others state they quickly abandoned their clothing for European fashions. Written scholarship conflicts on the evolution of garments ,but extant garments similar to those from the Sadberk Hanim Museum in Istanbul are definite. Within elite Ottoman society more traditional garments were influenced by western commodities. The same is true for the West. Extant garments from designers like Paul Poiret illustrate the influence of the Ottoman women in Europe. There were some women who wore these designs but as Onur points out they were often reserved for fancy balls and masquerades.[29] Ottoman women in contrast fully embraced the western attire for their everyday attire. The influence was uneven between east and west, and illustrate that Europeans sought to dominate those whom they deemed culturally inferior to them.
Boasson, Frederick and Fritz Eggler, photographers. [Empress Alexandra Feodorovna,
Autographed Photograph], [1908] Image. Retrieved from RomanovRussia.com,
feodorovna/. (Accessed April 05, 2016).
Inal, Onur. "Women's Fashions in Transition: Ottoman Borderlands and the Anglo-Ottoman
Exchange of Costumes." Journal Of World History 22, no. 2 (June 2011): 243-272.
Academic Search Complete, EBSCOhost (accessed February 25, 2016).
Kavas, Serap. "‘Wardrobe Modernity’: Western Attire as a Tool of Modernization in Turkey."
Middle Eastern Studies 51, no. 4 (July 2015): 515-539. Academic Search Complete,
EBSCOhost (accessed March 10, 2016).
Laver, James. Costume and Fashion: A Concise History. 5th ed. London: Thames and Hudson
ltd., 2012.
McGann, Kass. Getting Dressed Guide for Ottoman Turkish Women 1520-1683. Reconstructing
History, LLC, 2014. Kindle.
Rabinovitch-Fox, Einav. "[RE]FASHIONING THE NEW WOMAN: Women's Dress, the
Oriental Style, and the Construction of American Feminist Imagery in the 1910s."
Journal Of Women's History 27, no. 2 (Summer2015 2015): 14-36. Academic Search Complete, EBSCOhost (accessed March 10, 2016).
Ruane, Christine. The Empire’s New Clothes.  New Haven: Yale University Press, 2009.
Sadberk Hanim Museum, Ottoman Women’s Costumes, Acessed March 15, 2016.
Scarce, Jennifer. Women’s Costume of the Near and Middle East. New York: Routledge, 2003.

[1] Kass McGann, Ottoman Turkish Women’s Getting Dressed Guide: 1520-1683 (Reconstructing History LLC, 2014), Kindle, loc 111.
[2]Ibid., loc68. 
[3]Jennifer Scarce, Women’s Costume of the Near and Middle East (New York: Routledge, 2003), Kindle, loc 1263.
[4]McGann, loc 136-208.
[5]Scarce, 1698. 
[6]Scarce, loc 1793.
[7]Ibid., 1558. 
[8]A. Bender, “Late 19th & Early 20th Century: The parts of a lady’s outfit in putting-on order,” La Couturiere Parisienne, copyright 1997-2012, http://www.marquise.de/en/1800/glossar.shtml . The chemise was similar to the gömlek in that it was usually a simple undershirt; the drawers are similar to the cakşir and were underpants; the corset sculpted the body to the proper shape of the decade; the corset over was usually embroidered or had lace that would show above the bodice; the first petticoat was closer cut to make sure nothing was exposed if the wind kicked up skirts; the understructure could have been a bustle, crinoline, but wasn’t present in the 20th century; more petticoats were added to smooth the shape and add fullness to the skirt; and finally a separate bodice and skirt were put on over top the layers.
[9] Abdullah Frères, photographer. [Turkish Woman, Full Length Portrait, Seated, Facing Front, Holding Parasol and Flowers], [Between and 1900, 1880] Image. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/2003677089. (Accessed April 04, 2016.)
[10] Frederick Boasson and Fritz Eggler, photographers. [Empress Alexandra Feodorovna, Autographed Photograph], [1908] Image, retrieved from RomanovRussia.com, http://romanovrussia.com/antique/signature-autograph-photograph-empress-alexandra-feodorovna/, (accessed April 05, 2016).
[11]Ruane, 64. 
[12]Ibid., 138-140.
[13]Onur Inal, "Women's Fashions in Transition: Ottoman Borderlands and the Anglo-Ottoman
Exchange of Costumes," Journal Of World History 22, no. 2 (June 2011), Academic Search Complete, EBSCOhost (accessed February 25, 2016), 257. 
[14]Ibid., 263.
[15] Einav Rabinovitch-Fox, "[RE]FASHIONING THE NEW WOMAN: Women's Dress, the Oriental Style, and the Construction of American Feminist Imagery in the 1910s," Journal Of Women's History 27, no. 2 (Summer2015 2015): 14-36. Academic Search Complete, EBSCOhost (accessed March 10, 2016), 15.
[16]Ibid., 17. 
[17]Ruane, 176. 
[18]Ibid., 177. 
[19]Ibid., 178. 
[20] James Laver, Costume and Fashion: A Concise History. 5th ed. (London: Thames and Hudson
ltd., 2012), 224.
[21] Onur, 270.
[22]Ibid., 268. 
[23]Ibid., 262. 
[24] Serap Kavas, 516.
[26]Onur, 262. 
[27]Kavas, 523-524. 
[28]  Sadberk Hanim Museum, Ottoman Women’s Costumes, Acessed March 15, 2016.
[29]Onur, 255.