New Introduction by Yiorgos Kalogeras
The Unveiled Ladies of Istanbul (Stamboul) is a picturesque description of women's life in post-World War I Turkey during a period of social and political turmoil. Here Demetra Vaka (1877-1946), an expatriate of Ottoman Turkey, established American journalist and acquaintance of Prince Sabaheddin, returns to her native Istanbul after a 20-year absence. Describing women's lives in post-World War I Turkey, she reports on the successful project of female emancipation pursued by Mustafa Kemal as part of the nationalist agenda. Noting how much this project had benefited upper- and middle-class Turkish women, Vaka nonetheless regrets that the gradual emergence of the monocultural, modern Republic was bringing an end to the multiethnic character of the Ottoman State.