Ottoman Slaves: Suggested Reading

Painting of the Janissary corps, the Ottoman slave infantry
Looking for more stories of Ottoman slavery? The books below are excellent resources for the understanding the experiences of slaves and their owners as well as comprehensive information on the slave trade and the Ottoman role within it. The stories published on the Diwaniyya blog have been taken from the Toledano and Kozma works.

Ehud Toledano
Slavery and Abolition in the Ottoman Middle East. Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1998.

As if Silent and Absent: Bonds of Enslavement in the Islamic Middle East. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2007.

“The Slave’s Body in Ottoman Society,” in Representing the Body of the Slave, edited by Thomas Wiedemann and Jane Gardner. London: Frank Cass Publishers, 2002.

“The Imperial Eunuchs of Istanbul: From Africa to the Heart of Islam,” Middle Eastern Studies, Vol. 20, No. 3 (Jul. 1984), 379-390.

“Late Ottoman Concepts of Slavery,” Poetics Today, Vol. 14, No. 3 (Autumn 1993), 477-506.

“Shemsigul: A Circassian Slave in Mid-Nineteenth Century Cairo,” in Struggle and Survival in the Modern Middle East, edited by Edmund Burke, III and David N. Yaghoubian. University of California Press, 2006.



Liat Kozma
“Black, Kinless, and Hungry: Manumitted Female Slaves in Khedival Egypt,” in Race and Slavery in the Middle East: Histories of Trans-Saharan Africans in Ninteenth-Century Egypt, Sudan, and the Ottoman Mediterranean, edited by Terence Walz and Kenneth M. Cuno. American University in Cairo Press.

“Wandering About as She Pleases: Prostitutes, Adolescent Girls, and Female Slaves in Cairo’s Public Space, 1850-1882.” Journal of Women of the Middle East and the Islamic World 10 (2012) 18-36.

Policing Egyptian Women: Sex, Law and Medicine in Khedival Egypt. Syracuse: Syracuse University Press, 2011.


Yaron Ben-Naeh
“Blond, Tall, with Honey-Colored Eyes: Jewish Ownership of Slaves in the Ottoman Empire.” Jewish History, Vol. 20, No.3/4 (2006), pp 315-332.

Toyotas of War

Diwaniyya Contributor

0 comments: