2 Year Postdoctoral Position for a Cultural Anthropologist in Istanbul

for the research project entitled

Migration, Memory, and Musical Expression: Musical Traditions from Central Eastern Anatolia in Turkey, Berlin, and Paris

The Orient-Institute Istanbul is currently looking for a Cultural Anthropologist.

The position will last for 24 months, the salary is based on the salary scales of German institutions in Turkey.

About the project

The project deals with musical traditions in the region between Koçgiri (Sivas) and Varto (Muş). One focus of the research will be on the question to what extent ethnic and religious categories correlate with musical traditions. Identity discourses will be investigated in the context of their historical development over the past decades, and, as part of them, consequences of historical experiences of violence (Koçgiri 1921, Şey Said 1925, Dersim 1937, Dersim-Bingöl 1994). Furthermore, effects of urbanization in the region, of the abandonment of villages and migration to Turkish or European cities, on musical traditions will be investigated, with a focus on migrants in Istanbul, Berlin, and Paris, relating to changing performance practice, effects of mediatization, changing musical education. Throughout the project, one of the priorities will be the changing roles of women in society and their effects on female musicians and music-making.

The project is financed by the German Research Foundation (DFG) and will be based at the Orient-Institute Istanbul (www.oiist.org/en). Principal investigator is Dr Martin Greve, German musicologist, based in Istanbul (https://oiist.academia.edu/MartinGreve).

The begin of the project depends on the development of the COVID-19 pandemic in the countries selected for fieldwork. At present the official start is planned for December 1, 2020, or at latest January 1, 2021.


Applicants are expected to hold a PhD in Cultural Anthropology (or a related discipline). The anthropologist does not necessarily have to be an expert in music but rather might develop her / his own research project related to the main project. Wherever possible, both researchers might work together, as for example on religious, ethnic and political identities, but might partially also act and write more independently but in constant exchange. Main languages of the project are English and Turkish, knowledge of Kurmanji will be helpful. Experience in fieldwork in eastern Anatolia, possibly also in Europe, is expected.

The Orient-Institute Istanbul is committed to raising the number of women in research. Female researchers are especially encouraged to apply. Applicants with disabilities are treated with preference given comparable qualification. 


Applications should be submitted as one single pdf document including a letter of motivation with indication of research fields, academic cv with a list of publications, certificates and one writing sample (recent journal article, book or thesis chapter).

Application deadline: August 31, 2020

Please submit your complete application to:

Prof. Dr. Raoul Motika

Director of the
Orient-Institut Istanbul
Susam Sokak 16 D.8

34433 Cihangir-IstanbulTurkey


For any question concerning the project and the application procedure, please contact:

Dr. habil. Martin Greve (greve@oiist.org)