Imperial Citizen examines the intersection between Ottoman
colonialism, control of the Iraqi frontier through centralization
policies, and the impact of those policies on Ottoman citizenship
laws and on the institution of marriage. In an effort to maintain
control of the Iraqi province, the Ottomans adapted their 1869
citizenship law to prohibit marriages between Ottoman women and
Iranian men. This prohibition was an attempt to contain the threat
that the Iranian Shi'a population represented to Ottoman control of
their Iraqi provinces. In Imperial Citizen, Kern establishes this
1869 law as a point of departure for an illuminating exploration of
an emerging concept of modern citizenship. She unfolds the
historical context of the law and systematically analyzes the
various modifications it underwent, pointing to its farreaching
implications throughout society, particularly on landowners, the
military, and Sunni women and their children. Kern's fascinating
account offers an invaluable contribution to our understanding of
the Ottoman Iraqi frontier and its passage to modernity.
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