An investigation of the processes of globalization in the context of Istanbul - one of the oldest and grandest of world cities. Istanbul is usually identified as a battleground between East and West, between Islam and secularism. Yet the authors argue that beyond these cliches lies a complex reality shaped by an ongoing struggle over the soul of the city and the identity of its inhabitants. Istanbulites try to accommodate, understand, challenge and shape the sweeping transformations that globalization has brought to their city. Explaining the course of the conflicts and the compromises involved in maintaining a precarious urbanity, this volume focuses on the fields of struggle ranging from politics to heritage, humour to music, public space to housing.
The most refreshing new book on the 'world city' debate to appear in the last decade. The essays open up the conflictual cultural politics of 'going global' in a cosmopolitan city that has long belonged to different worlds. The authors provide fascinating insights into the uncertain outcomes that globalization has brought to Istanbul. It's original, lively, and puts culture and politics right back on the agenda.--Anthony King, SUNY Binghamton