The Kizilbash-Alevis in Ottoman Anatolia: Sufism, Politics and Community

The Kizilbash-Alevis in Ottoman Anatolia: Sufism, Politics and Community

by Ayfer Karakaya-Stump


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The Kizilbash were at once key players in and the foremost victims of the Ottoman-Safavid conflict that defined the early modern Middle East. Today referred to as Alevis, they constitute the second largest faith community in modern Turkey, with smaller pockets of related groups in the Balkans. Yet several aspects of their history remain little understood or explored. This first comprehensive socio-political history of the Kizilbash/Alevi communities uses a recently surfaced corpus of sources generated within their milieu. It offers fresh answers to many questions concerning their origins and evolution from a revolutionary movement to an inward-looking religious order.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781474432689
Publisher: Edinburgh University Press
Publication date: 12/01/2019
Series: Edinburgh Studies on the Ottoman Empire Series
Pages: 352
Product dimensions: 6.50(w) x 1.50(h) x 9.50(d)

About the Author

Ayfer Karakaya-Stump is Associate Professor of History at The College of William and Mary. She has published articles in Turcica, International Journal of Turkish Studies and British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies, and has published a monograph in Turkish with Bilgi University Press (2015).

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations


Note on Transliteration

List of Abbreviations


Chapter 1. The Iraq Connection: Abu'l-Wafa' Taj al-'Arifin and the Wafa'i Order

Chapter 2. The Forgotten Forefathers: Wafa'i Dervishes in Medieval Anatolia

Chapter 3. Haci Bektas and His Contested Legacy: The Abdals of Rum, the Bektashi Order, and the (Proto-)Kizilbash Communities

Chapter 4. A Transregional Kizilbash Network: The Iraqi Shrine Cities and Their Kizilbash Visitors

Chapter 5. Mysticism and Imperial Politics: The Safavids and the Making of the Kizilbash Milieu

Chapter 6. From Persecution to Confessionalization: The Consolidation of Kizilbash/Alevi Identity in Ottoman Anatolia





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