Eckstein Albums

Eve Lacey's picture

The Skilliter Centre for Ottoman Studies has launched the Eckstein Albums on Cambridge Digital Library.

The Eckstein Albums document a medical survey of maternal and infant health in rural Anatolia from 1935 to 1939, captioned by a German Jewish migrant to Atatürk’s new Republic.

An eminent paediatrician who fled the rise of Nazism, Albert Eckstein was also a gifted photographer and portraitist. These albums contain almost 1000 photographs and offer a unique insight into Turkish medical history, illustrating the ethnographic profile and family structure of Turkey’s rural population in the early years of the Republic’s existence and situating maternal and infant health in the wider context of agricultural work, village education, and housing.

Eckstein travelled widely across Turkey and elsewhere, and his photographs also convey a keen interest in archaeology and the natural world. From the Middle East to Europe, these albums chronicle the several migrations of a Jewish family in the interwar period before their eventual move to Cambridge.