Dr. des. Esther Voswinckel Filiz

Tel: +90 212 293 60 67 / 131
Mail: voswinckel@oiist.org

Esther Voswinckel Filiz studied Cultural Anthropology and religious studies in Bologna and Tübingen, with a focus on the anthropology of religion in the Mediterranean. She wrote her master’s thesis on “Sufism in Istanbul. Religious Practices, Sensual Perception, and Urban Space” (2010). For her doctoral thesis entitled “Aziz Mahmud Hüdayi in Istanbul. Biography of a Place” at the Centre for Religious Studies (CERES) of Ruhr-Universität Bochum, submitted in June 2020, she conducted field research in Üsküdar for several years. Her research focuses on the material culture of Sufism in Istanbul, on the historical and contemporary aesthetics of saint’s tombs (türbe) and on portable and textile paraphernalia therein.

Since June 2020 she has been a researcher at Orient-Institut Istanbul responsible for the research field “Religious History of Anatolia”.

Anthropology of religion in the Mediterranean

Religious architecture

History of religion in Istanbul after 1925

Sufi garments and Ottoman turban literature (tâcname)

object biographies

DOKU/Threads of Tradition” (working title): textile devotionalia and their vitality in Istanbul’s religious urban fabric

Articles

Voswinckel Filiz, Esther. „Sufi Turbans in Istanbul – the Textile and Textual Production of the Tâc-ı Șerîf. The Politics of Dress and Identity in Eastern Mediterranean Societies, Past and Present. Edited by Rosita D’Amora and Tineke Rooijakkers. Leiden/London (Forthcoming 2021).

–- „Der kreisende Himmel über Konya. Tranceriten der Sufis zwischen Universum und Untergrund. Ein Feldbericht. Begeisterung und Blasphemie, Zeitschrift für Kulturwissenschaften 2/2015. Edited by Martin Zillinger and Erhard Schüttpelz. Bielefeld. 139-143.

–- „Looking Inside. The Windows of Sufi Saint Shrines in Istanbul. Kunstlicht. Journal for Visual Arts and Architecture 1 (2014). Amsterdam. 126-141. 

Review

Kreinath, Jens (Ed.): The Anthropology of Islam Reader, London/New York: Routledge, 2012, 420 p.. Zeitschrift für Religions- und Geistesgeschichte 65(1), 2013. Leiden/Boston. 79-81.

Blogpost

Voswinckel Filiz, Esther. >Saint Anthony’s Bread< in Istanbul and >Problem-Solving Chickpeas< in Iran: July’s Religion-Related Research Get-Together Dedicated to Food and Religion“ Orient-Institut Istanbul Blog, 14 August 2020. https://www.oiist.org/saint-anthonys-bread-in-istanbul-and-problem-solving-chickpeas-in-iran-julys-religion-related-research-get-together-dedicated-to-food-and-religio/

Other publications

Voswinckel Filiz, Esther. „Eis tin pólin. Istanbul bir geçişler coğrafyası.“ Turkish Airlines Empathy 1 (2019). Istanbul. 114-117. 

17 March 2021:  “Textile Belongings of a Sufi Saint in Istanbul”. Virtual Islamic Art History Seminar Series (online). 

16 November 2020: “On the Other Shore: The Things of a Sufi Saint in Istanbul”. Institut Français d’Études Anatoliennes (online). 

24 September 2020: “A landscape of tastes and melodies: aşure distribution at Istanbul’s tekkes”. Workshop The Ingredients of Aşure, Orient-Institut Istanbul (online).

22 June 2020: “Aziz Mahmud Hüdayi in Istanbul – Biographie eines Ortes”. Orient-Institut Istanbul Research Colloquium.

29 October 2019: “Collecting Thread Ends. Some Introductory Remarks”. Threads of Tradition – Textile Metaphors: a Workshop with Prof. Dr. Tim Ingold. CERES, Ruhr-Universität Bochum. 

18 October 2019: “The tâç in Ottoman Sufi culture: literature, design, symbolism and ritual.” With Prof. Dr. Semih Ceyhan (Marmara University). Conference The Sacred Patrimony of Sufism: Architecture, Objects and Symbols from the Maghreb to China. IFEA/CNRS/ Orient-Institut Istanbul.

4 May 2019: “Holy places of Sufism in Istanbul: the saint’s tomb as a threshold.” Seminar Holiness. Threshold of the “proximity” of the divine to the human and of the human to the divine. Dost-I (Domenican Study Istanbul (1.-5. Mai 2019).

28 October 2018: Workshop “Religiöse Praxen als alternative Ressourcen im Kontext gesellschaftlichen Umbruchs”. Conference Unsere Zeit denken: Interkulturelle Gegenwartsanalysen und Handlungsperspektiven. Akademie der Diözese Rottenburg-Stuttgart (26.-28.10.2018).

13 May 2016: “Aziz Mahmud Hüdayi in Istanbul – Ethnographie eines Ortes”. Materialwerkstatt/Research Colloquium a.r.t.e.s. Graduate School for the Humanities, Universität zu Köln.

25 March 2016: “Sufi Turbans  in Istanbul – the Textile and Textual Production of Ritual Headgear at Saintly Gravesites.” Conference The Politics of Dress and Identiy in Eastern Mediterranean Societies, Past and Present. Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam/University of Salento. Allard Pierson Museum Amsterdam (24.-26.3.2016).