- President's Note
Beginning with this issue, the Journal of the Ottoman and Turkish Studies Association (JOTSA) will include a brief letter from the current president of OTSA. This is an opportunity to establish a more dynamic connection between the organization and its journal; to update readers about OTSA activities; to point to developments in the field of Ottoman and Turkish studies; to highlight upcoming events; and to note significant ones recently past. Although social media and other digital postings are the most popular avenues for immediate communication today, a professional journal (in print and digital formats) has a role to play in considering medium- and longer-term developments and projections.
For those unfamiliar with the Ottoman and Turkish Studies Association, this is an opportunity for a general introduction. The Turkish Studies Association was founded and incorporated in 1971 as a private, non-profit, non-political organization of persons interested in Ottoman and Turkish studies. In 2014, the members voted to rename it the Ottoman and Turkish Studies Association, to reflect more accurately the scope of members' interests and scholarship. The association exists to promote high standards of scholarship and instruction; to facilitate communication among the members; and to promote international, scholarly cooperation among persons and organizations concerned with Turkish and Ottoman studies. The association publishes JOTSA and holds its annual Members' Meeting each November in conjunction with the conference of the Middle East Studies Association. Persons interested in Turkish or Ottoman studies are invited to join by contacting the OTSA treasurer at email@example.com.
OTSA is governed by a board of nine persons, including (currently): the president (Amy Singer), the immediate past-president (Linda Darling), the treasurer (Patricia Blessing), the secretary (Hale Yılmaz), and five board members (Yiğit Akın, Lâle Can, Chris Gratien, James Grehan, and İpek Yosmaoğlu). [End Page 5] The president acts as the chief executive officer, with general supervisory responsibilities for the sound and vibrant functioning of the organization. The treasurer keeps custody of all OTSA funds, maintaining an accurate and up-to-date account of all assets, liabilities and transactions. The secretary ensures orderly functioning and documentation of activities, including the organization and minute-keeping of all meetings. The board members assist in the ongoing business of the association, offering constructive and critical input on the regular activities and special initiatives of the Executive Board, and helping to ensure continual communication with the members of the association.
JOTSA is the current iteration of what began as a Newsletter with the founding of the TSA in 1971. In 1976, the Turkish Studies Association Bulletin began to appear, changing its title to The Turkish Studies Association Journal with the first issue of 2002. Renamed together with the association, JOTSA first appeared in 2014, and has been published by Indiana University Press since Fall 2015.1 It is peer-reviewed and indexed, publishing articles that reflect the ongoing evolution of the field. Each issue of JOTSA also includes book reviews and short reports on signal events. Our thanks are due to the Institute of Turkish Studies for its continuing support for JOTSA.
During the course of 2018, Kent Schull of Binghamton University, SUNY has turned over the editorial reins to Nükhet Varlık of Rutgers University-Newark. On behalf the OTSA membership and the wider community of JOTSA's readers, I would like to thank Kent for the extraordinary energy and dedication he has given to the Journal. Under his guidance, it has returned to regular publication and expanded to offer readers a diverse roster of innovative and high-quality articles. As she assumes the role of editor, we will look to Nükhet to continue where Kent leaves off, bringing her own vision and scholarly acumen to bear on the Journal. Providing the crucial continuity for the journal, Robert Zens will remain as managing editor.
Each year, OTSA awards several prizes to recognize achievements of scholarship and study. Members of the organization select the winners. We applaud the 2017 winners and thank the various committee members for volunteering their time and expertise.
The 2017 M. Fuat Köprülü Book Prize was awarded to Stefan Winter of the...