Encyclopedia of Women & Islamic Cultures

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Representations: Theater: Ottoman Empire
(1,051 words)

Several different forms of traditional folk theater existed in the Ottoman Empire. For example, village plays that had a ritual function were performed in the countryside whereas in large cities (mainly Istanbul and Izmir) folk theater functioned as entertainment. In the nineteenth century, Western-oriented theater also developed in big cities.

In traditional folk theater the actors were men who performed female as well as male parts. When a performance took place before an all-female audience, however, female actors performed both male and female parts. The m…

Cite this page
de Bruijn, Petra, “Representations: Theater: Ottoman Empire”, in: Encyclopedia of Women & Islamic Cultures, General Editor Suad Joseph. Consulted online on 27 February 2024 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1872-5309_ewic_EWICCOM_0640b>
First published online: 2009

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