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Brokering EmpireTrans-Imperial Subjects between Venice and Istanbul$
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E. Natalie Rothman

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780801449079

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801449079.001.0001

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(p.248) Afterword
Brokering Empire

E. Natalie Rothman

Cornell University Press

This afterword argues that the practices of mediation, classification, and demarcation elaborated by trans-imperial subjects in early modern Venice constituted important elements in the genealogy of Enlightenment anthropology and the nascent discipline of Orientalism. In particular, eighteenth-century Orientalists, who articulated taxonomies of Mediterranean peoples based on language, ritual, and custom, relied on the efforts of their trans-imperial forebears in the previous two centuries to institutionalize their specialized knowledge of things Ottoman in several European metropoles. The scientific study of Ottoman culture depended on the development of commercial and diplomatic institutions that facilitated the production and circulation of specific kinds of knowledge across linguistic and political boundaries. The concept of trans-imperial subjects raises important questions about prevailing notions of early modern coloniality, citizenship, and subjecthood.

Keywords:   mediation, classification, demarcation, trans-imperial subjects, early modern Venice, Enlightenment anthropology, Orientalism, coloniality, citizenship, subjecthood

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