“NEWS IN PAPERS ARE NOT THAT MUCH CREDIBLE!” ABDULHAMID I AND THE EFFORTS TO FOLLOW THE EUROPEAN PRESS


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, Tuncer H.

Eastern European History Review, no.5, pp.233-246, 2022 (Peer-Reviewed Journal)

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Journal Name: Eastern European History Review
  • Journal Indexes: ERIHPlus
  • Page Numbers: pp.233-246
  • Istanbul University Affiliated: No

Abstract

It is a well-known fact that the advent of the printing press, and therefore the periodic and non-periodical publishing in the Ottoman society took place relatively late compared to its European counterparts. It was thought that this delay meant that the Ottomans were incapable of using the media tools of the period, either actively or passively. In this context, it was assumed that the Ottomans followed not the European press and showed no tendency to use papers as a source of “intelligence” until 1884, when Sultan Abdulhamid II established the Directorate of Foreign Affairs. Contrary to this common belief, despite the few and trivial efforts beforehand, it is seen that Sultan Abdulhamid I made a consistent and careful effort to follow the European press during his reign. In this article, the sultan’s pursuit of the European press, how the papers were procured, what kind of issues were underlined in the extracts translated and how the relevant news and comments were evaluated will be emphasized, and how this effort turned into almost a standard practice following his reign will be shown.