Subject: OTAP Report - April 2002
Date: Fri, 26 Apr 2002 07:17:00 -0700
Dear OTAP Group,
When I promised to update you on the progress of our project, I had no idea how much progress there would be. To me the most exciting recent news involves the creation of another significant related project. One of the difficult questions for the project staff has been, "Given the large number of texts that need to be made available and our limitations on staff and time, how are we going to decide where to focus our energies in the long term?" The good news is that Prof. Mustafa Isen-an outstanding Ottomanist and prolific producer of text editions--has offered to head a group (tentatively called "The Critical Texts Group"), which will survey scholars and publications in the field with the goal of producing a series of prioritized lists of the most desired and needed texts, including, at least, a general list, lists by period, and lists by major disciplinary category. Not only will this work benefit the Archive Project but it will also serve as a guide to scholars and students seeking to contribute text transliterations and editions to the field.
At this time we are in the process of developing four major independent but related projects:
1. The Ottoman Texts Archive Project: (Kalpakli and Andrews)
2. The Ottoman Historical Dictionary: Semih Tezcan
3. The Ottoman Bio-bibliographical Encyclopedia: Gottfried Hagen
4. The Critical Texts Group: Mustafa Isen
Ultimately, however, the success of these projects will depend on the participation of the community of Ottomanist scholars. Each project will ask something of some (or all) of you and your colleagues. We promise to work hard to see that contributions to these projects are recognized publicly and institutionally and welcome your suggestions about how this might be done.
If you visit our sample website, you will see that we have been making progress. We have now converted and uploaded the whole of Prof. Isen's edition of the tezkere sections of the Künhü'l-ahbar. We will be making corrections and links as we go along. This was a major task involving the conversion of text written on a MAC using an unknown typesetting program. Our little staff (RA Didem Havlioglu and undergraduate assistant Jordan Becke) did amazing work with this text and proved that we can handle almost anything.
We have also refined and updated our notes for contributors thanks to the work of Babur Tuna of Bilkent University, who converted and tagged a text sample for us. If you have a short transliterated text that you would like to contribute, we would very much appreciate your making an attempt at converting and tagging it according to the instructions on the website.
Remember, this website is only a sample site. We have big plans for the future and are busy writing a grant to fund our vision. Please feel free to write to us with your comments, suggestions, and questions. And thank you for being the core of our project community. We very much appreciate your interest and support.
Walter G. Andrews
Department of Near Eastern Languages
University of Washington
Seattle, WA 98195