Robert W. Zens

Robert Zens


Reilly Hall 406
Le Moyne College
1419 Salt Springs Road
Syracuse, NY 13214


(315) 445-4474


[email protected]

Professor of History; Ottoman Empire, Middle East, Islam, Balkans

I received my B.A. in History with a concentration in Medieval and Renaissance Studies from the University of Dallas. As an undergraduate I had the pleasure of studying abroad in Rome, allowing me to experience the Mediterranean world first hand. My time in Rome spurred my interest in further exploring this area of the world. This interest eventually led me to the study of the Ottoman Empire. I received an M.A. and Ph.D. (2004) in Ottoman History with subfields of Byzantine, Imperial Russian, and Spanish history as well as South Asian Studies at the University of Wisconsin­, Madison. Prior to teaching at Le Moyne College, I taught at Indiana University of Pennsylvania for three years. I was drawn to the Jesuit liberal arts tradition of Le Moyne which is very similar to the undergraduate institution I attended because of the emphasis on providing a wide ­ranging education and the close student ­teacher relationship. It is my desire to create in the classroom a passion for acquiring knowledge. My research interests lie within the eighteenth and early nineteenth­ century Ottoman Empire. Presently I am working on a monograph on Ottoman provincial elites. I conduct most of my research at the Ottoman archives in Istanbul, Turkey.


  • World Civilizations I & II
  • Early Islamic History, 600-1258
  • Empires of Islam: The Ottomans, Safavids/Qajars and Mughals
  • Modern Middle East History, 1792-2000
  • History and Memory in the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict
  • State and Faith in the Middle East
  • Environment and Epidemics: Two Centuries of Catastrophe

Recent and Forthcoming Publications

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