Some Observations on the Cultural Inventory of Izmir from the
Tanzimat to the Constitutional Monarchy (1839 - 1876)
• Abstract: During the period when the Ottoman Empire remained at the periphery of
the capitalist world system, İzmir assumed the identity of a colonial port city which the Levantines, who transferred the rich products of Western Anatolia to the West, and their local
collaborators made the center of the commercial diaspora. While İzmir, which lived through
its brightest period from the 17th century to the beginning of the 20th century, had the appearance of an ordinary “slightly bigger than a village” town of the Aegean at the western end
of the Anatolian plateau, it begins to be seen as the “Pearl of the Levant” with its port, quay,
municipal organization, railways, trams, banks, factories, modern schools, casinos, clubs, theaters and coffee houses. In the aforementioned period, İzmir became one of the early modern
period cities of the Ottoman Empire with the changes and transformations it went through.
This article tries to convey the episodes of the economic, social, and ideological structural
transformations in the background of this positive leap that the city had experienced.
Key words: Tanzimat, Period of Autocracy, Levantines, Second Constitutional Monarchy, Unionists.