In the West, when one thinks about the concepts such as the harem and Oriental women, there are unfortunately a couple of stock images that come to mind. Shaped Shaped by centuries-old orientalist attitudes, Eastern women were thought to be prisoners in the harems much like birds in gilded cages, devoid of any rights or say. Sensualized images of the harem where women were believed to be sequestered for male pleasure only added to the demeaning portrayal of women in the East. This book is a study of the often misunderstood lives of Eastern women in Ottoman harems. Based predominantly on nineteenth century British womens travel accounts, this detailed but easy-to-read archival investigation sheds a fresh light on womens misunderstood place in Ottoman society. As a challenge to the dominant orientalist discourse, this study details real lives of Ottoman women behind the myth of the Ottoman harem.