Crime, bandits, and community: how public panic shaped the social control of territory in the Ottoman Empire
AffiliationUniversity of Derby
MetadataShow full item record
AbstractThis study explores the role of crime, bandits, and public panic in in the nineteenth century Ottoman society by using archival documents and employing a comparative perspective. In addition to the social bandit concept of Eric Hobsbawm, there is an introduction of two new banditry forms in this study—opportunist bandits and imagined bandits. The comparison of different bandit forms clarifies that social bandits and opportunist bandits aggravated public panic and produced imagined bandits. Hence, public panic and the dissent of local people unveiled through rumors about the imagined bandits. The exploration of different forms of bandits in the Ottoman Empire is a response to the vexed issue concerning the challenges in the social control of territories in a multiethnic and multi-religious empire. This study provides new conceptual tools to rethink about the spatial dimensions in the emergence of bandits. This article shows that spatial factors in the social control of territory can be influenced by the reaction of local people from bottom-to-top and, in doing so, can determine the response of state authority. The present study, therefore, unveils the power relationship in the social control of territory whether it is manifested by physical force or public panic.
CitationCayli, B. (2018) ‘Crime, bandits, and community: how public panic shaped the social control of territory in the Ottoman Empire’, Territory, Politics, Governance. doi: 10.1080/21622671.2018.1557074
PublisherTaylor and Francis
JournalTerritory, Politics, Governance