The Cambridge Digital Library lately uploaded a strong assortment of photos captured by Albert Eckstein within the 1930s. Eckstein, a German Jewish physician, was exiled by Hitler and the Nazi celebration in 1935 and he selected to spend his exile in Turkey serving to to struggle the scourge of toddler mortality within the nation’s poorest communities.
The newly digitized archive comprises some 1,000 photos captured by Eckstein throughout his time in Turkey, the place he documented rural poverty whereas working laborious to decrease the nation’s horrifying toddler mortality price of virtually 50%. As the introduction on the College of Cambridge web site explains:
Overlaying the interval from 1935-39, the Eckstein Albums doc a medical survey of maternal fertility and toddler mortality in a rustic that had solely come into being simply over a decade earlier, following the Ottoman Empire’s defeat within the First World Conflict.
The images had been donated to the college by the Eckstein household, who ultimately got here to reside in Cambridge after Albert’s dying in 1950. The albums had been handed over to the Skilliter Centre for Ottoman Research—which “helps analysis into the historical past, literature and tradition of the Ottoman Empire and early Turkish Republic”—final yr, and have been painstakingly digitized into 15 albums which can be organized chronologically, beginning together with his years in Turkey and ending with images from his travels to Israel, Italy, Greece, and Egypt.
Beneath is a sampling from his early work, which is the main focus of the so-called Eckstein Albums.
Now, you’ll be able to entry and browse your complete assortment on-line—a strong visible doc of rural Turkey that emphasizes the significance of housing and hygiene to public well being, with out dehumanizing the topics positioned in entrance of his lens.
“The pictures taken by Albert Eckstein in rural Anatolia within the late 1930s supply an interesting and uncommon perception into the realities of rural life within the early years of the Turkish Republic,” says Dr Kate Fleet, Director of the Skilliter Centre. “What makes these pictures significantly particular is that though they reveal the poverty and stark situations of life, additionally they painting a lightness and heat, and a detailed connection between the photographer and topic which supplies the photographs an intimacy and spontaneity not often seen in images from this era.”
To be taught extra about Dr. Eckstein’s unimaginable life and contribution to public well being, learn a full account of the gathering and the way it got here to Cambridge here. And if you wish to leap straight in and discover this fascinating assortment for your self, yow will discover the Eckstein Albums at this link.
Picture credit: All images courtesy of Skilliter Centre for Ottoman Research, CC BY-NC 3.0