Torunoğlu, Gülşah

The Ohio State University

Research Title: Comparative Feminisms: Secular and Religious Discourses in the Egyptian and Turkish Women’s Movements, 1880-1940

Dr. Torunoğlu is a post-doctoral research fellow, specializing in comparative women’s history in the Middle East. She holds a PhD in History from the Ohio State University. Her current book project investigates the interaction between organized women's movements in Turkey and Egypt, and their relation to global women’s activism during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Based on two years of archival research in Turkey, Egypt, and the United Kingdom, her project establishes a dialogue between Turkish and Egyptian feminisms, compares nationalist versus Islamic trends within them, and takes stock of their interactions with and resistances to western feminisms. By bringing the evolution of the feminist discourse in Egypt and the Ottoman Empire in conversation with the secular and religious reform traditions in both countries in a comparative perspective, her work seeks to encourage a broader and more in depth understanding of feminism in the Middle East, stripped from the dominant, nationalist narrative of its evolution.