Dec 16 2006
American Historian, Known for his Work on Ottomans, Dies
By Anadolu News Agency (AA), Ankara
Saturday, December 16, 2006
Known for his works on the field of Ottoman history, Prof. Stanford
Shaw died yesterday.
A statement made by the Turkish Academy of Science said that Shaw,
who was made an honorary member of the academy on Dec. 16, 2005, and
who was granted the `Medal and Certificate of Service’ in September
along with Prof. Halil Inalcik due to his contributions to Turkish
history passed away at the age of 76.
Shaw, the first historian to benefit from the Ottoman archives,
demonstrated that the Ottoman state granted the Jews who had been
oppressed in both Western and Eastern Europe the right to take refuge
in the Ottoman lands.
As a result, the Jews, who escaped the tyranny in Europe, helped the
Ottoman economy to develop and made contributions to the diplomatic
and cultural life of the Ottoman Empire.
In his 2000-page work on the Turkish War of Independence, Shaw talked
about how the Turks were able to get rid of the European exploitation
and economic hegemony partly due to Ataturk’s charismatic leadership
and partly because of the weakness of the Allies.
Shaw also underlines in the work that the Ottoman administrative
reforms of 1839 fell short of reaching success because it almost
completely imitated the Western institutions and when the reforms
were adapted to the Ottoman realities of the day, the modernization
efforts turned out to have long-lasting effects.
Professor Shaw, whose house was bombed in 1977 when he was working
for the University of California, had also proved the Armenian claims
of an alleged genocide wrong by presenting various documents from the