TARIH KULTUR VE SANAT ARASTIRMALARI DERGISI-JOURNAL OF HISTORY CULTURE AND ART RESEARCH, cilt.7, ss.506-526, 2018 (ESCI İndekslerine Giren Dergi)
Education passed through a wide range of reform movements like other institutions in Ottoman Emire during XIX century. The era of Abdulhamit II is especially prominent regarding educational reforms. A number of important steps were taken during his reign to improve education such as building new schools, effort to increase the number of students, more participation of girls in education and teaching, use of modern tools and techniques etc. This period was also characterized by the development of nation-states that were started to be established under the influence of the nationalist movement. Some cultural privileges were given to the Balkan peoples, such as Greeks, Bulgarians, Serbs, and Vlachs, who had revolted against the Ottoman Empire to keep them binding with the state. The right to education was one of those important privileges. Indeed, non-Muslims who had already educated in their own tongues and schools had begun to use their studies of language and education more in shaping their cultural identities in this period. At this point, it can be said that the Albanians were more backward than the other Balkan peoples, because unlike the other Balkan nations, though they were in an ethnic union but having more religious pluralism (Muslim, Orthodox Christian, and Catholic Christian) in their society. Therefore, the demand of Albanians from the Ottoman State for their education with their own tongues has only emerged from the beginning of the 1900s. The Ottoman central government looked favorably on these requests and considered the right to education in mother tongue as a constitutional right for them. However, the Albanians could not have a consensus that should their education in the mother tongue be in Turkish (Arabic) letters or Latin alphabet. This was also a reflection of the cultural differences in Albanians.