Merve T. Ispahani

Merve T. Ispahani

Merve Tezcanlı Ispahani is a doctoral candidate at the History Department, Columbia University. Her dissertation “Building Sovereignty in the Late Ottoman World: Imperial Citizenship, Passports and Consular Networks” explores state efforts for assuming the exclusive right to determine, verify and document individual identities, and regulate movement through a newly instituted passport regime when the question of citizenship and regulation of movement controls emerged as a new site of diplomatic and political struggle between the empire-states. In an attempt to bring Ottoman studies in dialogue with the newly developing field of trans-regional history, her dissertation reveals the multiple ways through which these categories were appropriated and challenged by both the imperial center and different communities moving within and across the empire. Ispahani is currently based in Istanbul and works as a Research Associate at Columbia Global Centers | Istanbul.