Pamela Sezgin

  • United States
  • Professor of Anthropology


Dr. Sezgin is a specialist in the history and cultures of the late Ottoman Empire, with special emphasis on Sephardic Jews and Greeks in Istanbul. She is the author of several chapters in books about Sephardic culture and Ottoman history. She has other publications, including a number of entries in Brill’s Encyclopedia of the Jews in the Islamic World. Dr. Sezgin returned to full-tme university teaching after a career as a museum curator and administrator. Dr. Sezgin serves on the scientific committees and editorial boards for several projects of the Green Lines Institute in Portugal, a NGO that is dedicated to historic preservation and sustainable heritage. She has also been involved with the Turkish Studies Program at the University of Utah, participating in a series of international conferences.

Courses Taught

HIST 1111: World History I; HIST 1112: World History II; ANTH 1102: Introduction to Anthropology/ Four-Field Survey; ANTH 2020: Cultural Anthropology; ANTH 2010: Biological Anthropology;

ANTH 3101: Museum Studies; ANTH 3103: Anthropology of Food; ANTH 3400: Anthropology of the Middle East; ANTH 4803: Anthropology of Things; ANTH 4860: Anthropology of Religion.


  • Post-Doctoral Studies, World History, Georgia State University, 2003
  • Ph.D., Anthropology, Indiana University - Bloomington, 1991

Research/Special Interests

Modernizing the millet; legal reform in the late Ottoman Empire; Ottomanism as a political ideology and as a shared cultural repertoire; transcultural memory and cosmopolitanism in Ottoman port cities; expressive culture (music, food, political cartoons, art, architecture) as a means to study the past and the present; Foucault’s heterotopia as a means for understanding the many and overlapping histories and meanings of a particular place; digital historiography.


“Between Cross and Crescent: British Diplomacy and Press Opinion Toward the Ottoman Empire in Resolving the Balkan Wars, 1912-1913” in War and Nationalism: The Balkan Wars, 1912-1913, and Their Sociopolitical Implications, Edited by M. Hakan Yavuz and Isa Blumi, Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 2013.

“Landscapes and Memory: Reconstructing the Ethbnobotany of Smith Plantation” in Heritage 2012: Proceedings of the Third International Conference and Heritage and Sustainable Development. Porto, Portugal: Green Lines Institute, 2012.

“Hidden Heritage, Disappearing Legacy: Jews and the Politics of Memory in the Post-Ottoman City,” in the proceedings from Heritage 2010: Heritage and Sustainable Development, Edited by Rogério Amoêda, Sérgio Lira, and Cristina Pinheiro, Barcelos, Portugal: Green Lines Institute for Sustainable Development, 2010.

“History as Others’ Spaces: Using Foucault’s Heterotopia to Explore Intangible Heritage in Istanbul,” in the proceedings from Sharing Cultures 2009: International Conference on Intangible Heritage, Edited by Sérgio Lira et al, Barcelos, Portugal: Green Lines Institute for Sustainable Development, 2009.

Twelve entries in the Encyclopedia of Jews in the Islamic World, Norman Stillman, Executive Editor, The Hague, Netherlands: E.J. Brill, 2010-2013: “Ariyas, Abraham.” “Algazi, Isaac.” “Algazi, Solomon.” “Varon, Ishak.” “Longo, Saadiah ben Abraham.” “Lonzano, Menahem ben Judah de.” “Aboud (Abut), Avram (Misirli Ibrahim).” “Maftirim.” “Faro, Moses.” “Shikar, Shem Tov (Hoca Santo).” “Fresco [also, Fresko] Romano, Isaac” [also, Tamburi İsak Efendi]. “Moreno, Dario.”

Eight articles in Alcohol in Popular Culture, Edited by Rachel Black. Santa Barbara: Greenwood, 2010: “Arts” (pp.11-14); “Cocktails” (pp.56-61); “Drinking Glasses and Vessels” (pp. 72-74); “Hooch” (pp.109-111); “Music” (pp.136-138); “National Identity” (pp/139-140); “Punch” (pp.157-158); “Religion” (pp.161-165).

“Dario Moreno and Sephardic Cosmopolitanism,” New York: Secular Culture and Ideas (an online, reviewed journal), at January, 2008.

“Jewish Women in the Ottoman Empire,” Chapter 11 of From the Golden Age of Spain to Modern Times: Essential Studies on Sephardic Jewry. Edited by Zion Zohar, New York: New York University Press, 2005.


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