Musa Kazim Azimli

Field & Specialties

Early Modern Mediterranean and Ottoman Empire
Modern Middle East
History of Slavery and Capitalism
Digital Humanities


2023-2026 (Current) Ph.D. in History, University of Virginia

2021-2023 Digital Humanities Certificate Program, University of Virginia

2021-2023 M.A. in History, University of Virginia

2018-2022 M.A. in Comparative Studies in History and Society, Koç University

2013-2018 B.A. in History, Istanbul Bilgi University

2017 Exchange Student, in the Department of History, Ghent University


I am a third-year Ph.D. student in the Department of History at the University of Virginia working on slavery and social history in the Early Modern and Modern Middle East.

In 2018, I graduated as a high honors student from Istanbul Bilgi University and started my master's degree at Koç University Comparative Studies in History and Society. During my undergraduate studies, I took courses at the History Department of Ghent University within the framework of the Erasmus Exchange Program,and later, as graduate student, I interned at the International Institute of Social History (Amsterdam). I joined the University of Virginia in 2021, where I completed my master's degree in history and earned a certificate in Digital Humanities Certificate Program. I am pursuing my doctoral studies in this vibrant academic environment.

My dissertation project explores the history of the Imperial Slave Market in Istanbul from several layers by aligning with the interdisciplinary methods from spatial, legal, cultural, architectural, and digital history. In my research, I am trying to understand the human experiences of the market, explore its historical significance, reconstruct its architectural structure and spatial organization, uncover the economic and legal linkages between the market and the Ottoman state, and trace their changes over time on both macro and micro scales. This project has been supported by the 2023 Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Innovation Fellowship which was essential to complete innovative aspects of my research.

Awards & Honors

  • Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Innovation Fellowship (2023)
  • Arts,Humanities&Social Sciences Summer Research Fellowship, University of Virginia (2023)
  • Raven Fellowship, University of Virginia (2023)
  • Graduate Global Research Fellowship, Center for Global Inquiry& Innovation (2023)
  • UVA Department of History Summer Dissertation Research Funding (2022, 2023)
  • Edward Vaughan Howell Fellowship (2021)
  • University of Virginia PhD Fellowship (2021-2026)
  • Ottoman Summer Program Scholarship, Koç University (ANAMED) (2020)
  • Koç University M.A Scholarship (2018-2021)
  • High Honors Certificate, Istanbul Bilgi University (July 2018)
  • ÖSYM Full Scholarship (Coverage of Undergraduate Degree 2013-2018)

Courses Taught

I worked as a Teaching Asistant for:

HIME 2001: The Making of the Islamic World (Fall 2022)

HIME 2002: The Making of the Modern Middle East (Spring 2023)