this influence largely consists in the lengths to which Westerners were driven by their fear & hatred of the Ottomans. Recasting the discovery of the new world as Columbus's Crusade is interesting, but if Islamophobia was so powerful it drove him all the way across the Atlantic..
Well, that's not the best way to refute the clash of civilizations. Similarly, quoting European leaders calling Selim the devil incarnate is good evidence of his importance, but it works against Mikhail's states historiographic aim. But then if you were going to write a book...
showing the Ottomans' influence in a role beyond just Islamic bogeyman, you'd probably pick a sultan like Fatih, who spoke Latin and patronized Renaissance artists, or Suleyman, immortalized as a lawgiver in the US congress, rather than the warrior Selim.
Like a lot of efforts to challenge cliches about East & West, this one repeatedly falls back on them in order to make its subject matter sound important. Inevitably, the book ends by offering the Yavuz Selim bridge as a metaphor for the sultan's role connecting continents...
You can follow @NicholasDanfort.
Tip: mention @twtextapp on a Twitter thread with the keyword “unroll” to get a link to it.

Latest Threads Unrolled: