Internationally acclaimed Turkish historian Kemal Karpat died on Feb. 20 in the United States aged 96, a Turkish official said. Turkish Consul General in Chicago Umut Acar told Anadolu Agency that Karpat died of multi-organ failure in Madison, Wisconsin at around 6.40 p.m (1240GMT). Karpat, an expert on the Ottoman Empire and modern Turkish history, was an emeritus professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He celebrated his 96th birthday on Feb. 15, said Acar.
Born with Crimean Tatar roots, Karpat graduated from Istanbul University's Law School (1947) and earned his master's in political science at the University of Washington in Seattle and his doctorate in political and social sciences (1957) at New York University. He worked for the UN Economic and Social Council and served as a lecturer and director at educational institutions such as the University of Montana and New York University.
Karpat was director of the Turkish Studies Association and Turkish Research Institute, founding chair of the Central Asian Studies Association, and coordinator of the Central Asian Studies Program at the University of Wisconsin.
His publications include The Ottoman Past and Today's Turkey (2000), The Gecekondu: Rural Migration and Urbanization (2009), and The Politicization of Islam (Oxford, 2001).