Slave to Modernity? General Ḥusayn’s Journey from Tunis to Tuscany (1830s-1880s)

In: Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient
M’hamed Oualdi Princeton University

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Following the career of General Ḥusayn b. ʿAbdallāh, a prominent Circassian slave who served the Ottoman governors of Tunis from his childhood in the 1830s until his death in Tuscany in 1887, this paper attempts to grasp more than the colonial dimension of the North African past and to assess other global and transnational dynamics that molded the histories of modernity in the Maghrib. His exile in Florence redirects our attention to Mediterranean spaces, such as Tuscany, which were neither imperial nor colonial and which have been erased from the main narrative of colonized North Africa.

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