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    Gender, Religion, and Secularism in the English Mission Hospital of Jerusalem, 1844–1880

    This article offers new insights into the operation of the Mission Hospital built in Jerusalem in 1844 by the London Society for Promoting Christianity amongst the Jews (LJS) and the space that was created within it. I argue that the encounter in Jerusalem between Jewish women and the missionaries worked to create a liminal space that was neither religious nor secular, neither Jewish nor Christian, but all (and none) of these at once. I draw on Olwen Hufton’s concept of the “economy of makeshifts” to portray the hospital’s unique space. Based on the existing literature and new evidence, I show that in effect the Mission Hospital served women more than men, and I suggest that the gender composition of the patients allowed the hospital to succeed and helped to shape its operation. After a brief review of the literature, I introduce the LJS and compare its Jerusalem medical mission with contemporary medical institutions in England. I then expand on evidence showing that the Mission Hospital was in fact more of a women’s hospital and suggest why that was the case.

  • Review Essay: Minorities and Majorities: The Nation-State and Identitarian Politics in the Modern Levant

    Kais M. Firro, Metamorphosis of the Nation (al-Umma): The Rise of Arabism and Minorities in Syria and Lebanon, 1850–1940. Brighton; Portland, OR: Sussex Academic Press, 2009. 201 pp.
    Benjamin Thomas White, The Emergence of Minorities in the Middle East: The Politics of Community in French Mandate Syria. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2011. 239 pp.
  • Review Essay: The Transforming Landscape of Turkey’s Alevi Politics

    Review Essay:

    Elise Massicard, The Alevis in Turkey and Europe: Identity and Managing Territorial Diversity. New York: Routledge, 2013. 255 pp.
    Necdet Subaşı, Alevi Modernleşmesi: Sırrı Faş Eylemek. İstanbul: Timaş, 2008. 320 pp.
  • Ali M. Ansari, The Politics of Nationalism in Modern Iran. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2012. 327 pp.

    Ali M. Ansari, The Politics of Nationalism in Modern Iran. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2012. 327 pp.

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  • Back to the Future: The Jerusalem Exhibit at the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair

    The famous St. Louis World’s Fair of 1904 was a vast celebration of the new century and its promise of a future governed by technological and scientific progress. It is not often remembered that in the heart of this paean to modernity stood an enormous and astonishingly life-like replica of the Old City of Jerusalem. Evoking the past rather than the future and transcendence rather than materiality, what was Jerusalem doing in the St. Louis Fair? How did its presence challenge, complicate, or legitimize the popular narratives of modernization with which it was surrounded? Through a description of the fair and the replica—and contra theories that continue to adhere to the secularization thesis and its structuring binaries—this essay is an examination of the preservation and deployment of religious themes and symbols within modernity.