German Religious Women in Late Ottoman Beirut

Competing Missions

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In German Religious Women in Late Ottoman Beirut. Competing Missions, Julia Hauser offers a critical analysis of the German Protestant Kaiserswerth deaconesses’ orphanage and boarding school for girls in late Ottoman Beirut as situated within the larger field of educational development in the city. Drawing, among other sources, on the deaconesses’ largely unpublished letters home, her study illuminates that the only way missionary organizations like the deaconesses' could succeed was by entering into negotiations with their local environment, adapting their agenda in the process. Mission, therefore, was shaped not merely at home, but by conflictual negotiations on the periphery ‒ a perspective quite different from the top-down isolationist perspective of earlier research on missions.

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Julia Hauser, Dr. phil. (2015), is Assistant Professor of Global History at the University of Kassel. She has published several articles on mission in Ottoman Syria and co-edited, with Christine Lindner and Esther Möller, Entangled Education. Local and Foreign Schools in Ottoman Syria and Mandate Lebanon (Würzburg, 2014).
"Das Buch ist eine mikrohistorische Studie, die dem eigenen Anspruch genügt, die Isolation der einzelnen Missionsinitiativen durch eine räumliche, personelle, und institutionelle "Inverbindungsetzung" aufzubrechen. Es handelt sich um eine äusserst lesenswerte und informative Arbeit, die ihren Wert besonders dann entfaltet, wenn sie mit Studien über andere Missionen in Verbindung gesetzt wird." - Helge Wendt, in: Zeitschrift für Missionswissenschaft und Religionswissenschaft Vol. 99 (2015).
All interested in the history of missions and gender as well as Western involvement in the late Ottoman Empire and particularly Bilād al-shām. All scholars interested in the history of education, children and childhood, imperialism, global history and the history of globalization.