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Ismail Bey Gasprinski

(d. 1914)


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(d. 1914)

Crimean Tatar reformer, educator, and publicist. Also known as Ismail Bey Gaspraly. Regarded as an architect of modernism among Muslim Turkic subjects of the Russian empire. Educated in Muslim schools, a Russian military academy, and abroad (France and the Ottoman Empire); returned to Crimea to found one of the most important ethnic periodicals in Russian history, Terjuman (The interpreter). Posited that the influence of a misdirected religious orthodoxy condemned Muslims to cultural inferiority under modern Western technological, military, political, and intellectual hegemony. Believed that progress required educational reform, teaching a modern curriculum by modern methods, encouraging social and economic cooperation, and cultural borrowing. Spread his ideas by means of numerous pamphlets and periodicals. Inspired the movement known as Jadidism. Had an intellectually moderate and practical influence, which by the 1920s was felt throughout Turkic Russia as well as in Turkey, Egypt, and Muslim India.

See also Jadidism

Subjects: Islam.


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