Cultural and social history of the late medieval and early modern Persianate world; urban and local history in Iran; space, memory, and narrative in Persian historiography; shrine-centered religiosity; Safavid history
Arab and early Persian painting and the arts of the Islamic book in general, including the production of manuscripts of the Qur'an; art and material culture of the Islamic world; Fatimid art and architecture; the arts of Islamic Spain; artistic contacts between the Islamic World and Europe; aspects of contemporary Islamic art.
Applied International Relations, weapons of mass destruction, diplomacy, globalisation and corporate accountability, globalisation and democracy, globalisation and energy, the role of international non-governmental organisations, the United Nations and the Nazis.
Current research concerns the presence of Persians in Yuan (Mongol) China. Teaching concentrates on Mediaeval Persia. Involved in IFCELS with the Lord Chancellor's programme for Chinese Lawyers since the early 90s as well as pre-sessionals and ELAS.
Indo-Iranian History, Historical Geography and Philology (Avestan, Old Persian, Parthian, Pahlavi, Sanskrit, Hindi, Gujarati, Marathi, Urdu, Pashto, Balochi and Kashmiri); Languages and Religions of Late Antiquity and the Silk Road (Bactrian, Khotanese, Sogdian, contacts among Zoroastrianism, Manichaeism and early Islam); Pakistan studies (Ancient and early Medieval History, Dardic and Nuristani dialectology, ethnography and topography of NWFP, FATA, Northern Areas and Trans-Karakoram Tract); Pakistani minorities; HUMINT counterterrorism and linguistic analysis; South Asian Muslim psycho-sociology; Muslim non-Muslim relations (Iran, Pakistan, Bangladesh).
Typology, morpho-syntax, language documentation and description, historical linguistics, Lexical-Functional grammar, computer-aided linguistic analysis, Austronesian languages, Australian Aboriginal languages
Language documentation, linguistic and cognitive diversity, multimodality with a focus on manual gesture, visual mode of language, language use and language documentation, pragmatics, psycholinguistics, the role of video in language documentation.
PhD candidate in Historical Sociology at Leiden University. For his PhD thesis on The Social History of Sarcheshmeh Copper Mine in Iran Alamdar-Baghini is carrying out research on the social history of mining in Iran by focusing on Sarcheshmeh copper mine, one of the largest copper deposits worldwide, from the beginning of its establishment in 1966 to the 1979 Iranian Revolution. Alamdar-Baghini examines the evolution of the mining industry in the Iranian economy during the Pahlavi era and his focus is on the working conditions of the mine workers at Sarcheshmeh. This study intends to show the role of the state as well as the private sector in the Iranian mining industry and the relationship of the state and mining workers by focusing on the Sarcheshmeh copper mine.
Dr Lubna Ali is Professor and Director of the School of Politics and International Relations at Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad. She is UNESCO-Fellow at Middle East Studies Institute, Columbia University, New York, and a Post-doctoral fellow, Islamic Studies, Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri. Her interests include Iran's foreign policy behavior, countering militancy and extremism in the states sharing a trijunctional border in Balochistan province of Pakistan, Iran (Siestan), Aghanistan (Helmand) and Pakistan (Balochistan). She is also the recipient of international peace award (2008) from INSPAD (Institute of Peace and Development) promoting peace and human rights through irfan and Sufism.
Leila Alikarami is an Iranian lawyer and human rights advocate. She was an active member of Iran's One Million Signatures campaign, which collects signatures in support of changing discriminatory laws against women. In 2009 she accepted the RAW in War Anna Politkovskaya Award on behalf of the women of Iran and the campaign. She holds a PhD in law from SOAS.
Kayhan Barzegar PhD is Director of the Institute for Middle East Strategic Studies (IMESS) in Tehran. He is also a faculty member and Chair of the Department of Political Science and International Relations at the Science and Research Branch of the Islamic Azad University. Dr Barzegar was a Research Fellow at Harvard Kennedy School's Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs during 2007-2011 and a Post-doctorate Research Fellow at the London School of Economics (LSE) during 2002-2003. He has participated in numerous international conferences on Iran's regional policy, the politics of Iran’s nuclear program, Persian Gulf’s energy security issues, and Iran-US relations. Dr Barzegar is the Editor-in-Chief of Discourse: An Iranian English Quarterly.
Helen Giunashvili is a researcher at G. Tsereteli Institute of Oriental Studies, Ilia State University in Tbilisi and is also affiliated to the Graduate School of the Methodology of the Humanities in Paris. She was educated first at I. Javakhishvili State University, Faculty of Oriental Studies and after, at the St. Petersburg Institute of Oriental Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences, where she took the postgraduate course and did her Doctoral thesis on the subject “Personal Verbal Forms in Western Middle Iranian” (1993). Her researches mostly deal with cultural-linguistic interrelations of pre-Islamic Iran and Georgia. She is the author of more over 50 scientific publications.
Research interests: Historical grammar of Western Middle Iranian languages; Iranian-Georgian cultural-linguistic interference: Parthian and Middle Persian lexis in Old Georgian; Structural-typological relation of Middle Persian with Old Georgian; Parthian and Middle Persian onomastics (proper names, ethnical names, geographic terminology) in Old Georgian; Scythian-Alanic onomastics in Kartvelian; Old Aramaic epigraphy of Georgia, linguistic-paleographic analysis; XVI-XVIII cc Persian and Georgian-Persian historical documents, their linguistic characteristics; Persian elements in the language of the Iranian Georgians (Fereidanian dialect).
Historian and senior research fellow in the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS), I am mostly working on the social and intellectual history of Twelver Shi’ism in Iran during the 19th century and the first decade of the 20th century.
My research continued my interest in cultural memory through Iranian Jewish literature. The literary production of exiled Iranian Jewish women appears in the anthology I edited: If Salt has Memory (Five Leaves: 2008).
Deputy Director of the Gulf/2000 Project at Columbia University, New York, a major international research project on long-term trends and policy developments in the Persian Gulf and has organised a number of major conferences and edited five books on the region (October 1994 to present).
Areas of interest include Islamic History, especially Iran, Afghanistan, Central and South Asia & Persian Gulf, medieval and modern; Islamic Religion, especially Sufism; Geography; Numismatics; US Foreign Policy.
My passion for art research stems from my genuine interest in understanding the world through history of art, beginning with antiquity, through the middle ages and continuing into contemporary art. After gaining that knowledge, I decided to specialise in the beauty, passion and ideas transmitted by the Persian and Indian artists who dedicated their entire lives to creating magnificent miniature paintings in the form of folios, muraqas and manuscripts. The subjects in which I focus my research are pigments and dyes; X-Ray Fluorescent and Multi-Spectra Imaging; text and images in Persian manuscripts; Persian and Indian workshops in Safavid, Mughal India and Lucknow; the East India Company and transfer of manuscript from Persia into India between 17th to early 19th century. For more information: www.luzrodriguez.co.uk
PhD student at Universidad Complutense de Madrid (Spain). My work revolves around the axis power-knowledge-space in relation to Western/Spanish geopolitical imagination vis-à-vis the Middle East and, more specifically, Iran. Critical Geopolitics and IR, the critique of Orientalism and Discourse Analysis inform my research project.
Asghar Seyed-Gohrab is Associate Professor of Persian Language and Literature in the Department of Middle Eastern Studies at Leiden University. He teaches classes on Persian and Middle Eastern literature, Islamic mysticism (Sufism), cultural and intellectual interaction between East and West, and Iranian film and cinema. His recent research examines how classical poetry and medieval mystic and philosophical concepts are applied in modern Iran, to effect and comment on political changes. He has concentrated on three central episodes in the 20th century. At the time of the Constitutional Revolution (1905-11), poetry became a vehicle for introducing ‘Western' social and political ideas. During the Islamic Revolution (1979), Khomeini used poetry to express his mystical ideals; he also used mystical concepts as a buttress for his theory of Islamic government. During the Iran-Iraq war, poetry became part of the state propaganda, supporting the cult of combatant martyrdom, which in the crisis became an icon of national identity and a means of justifying violence. Poetry was also used in intensely personal processing of the horrors and quandaries of revolution and war.
My primary research interest concerns the process of literary production under authoritarian states. I have completed my doctoral project on the dialectic of literature and power with a specific focus on post-revolutionary Iran. My current project addresses the same question throughout the history of Persian literature.
Lecturer, Reader and Professor in SOAS 1967-2004; fieldwork in Iran, Afghanistan, Turkey; published on pastoral nomadism, ethnic and tribal minorities and the state, material cultures, culinary cultures, anthropology of Islam, Iranian Cinema.
Ghoncheh Tazmini's interests include Iran, Russia, the Arab revolts, Islam and modernity, social movements, reform and modernisation, cross-cultural discourse, and the ambivalent relationship between western and non-western traditions in the 21st century.
Massoumeh Torfeh, has been appointed UN Director of Strategic Communication and Spokesperson for Afghanistan and is a former senior producer in BBC World Service, specializes on the politics and media of Iran, Afghanistan and Central Asia.
Mehdi Zakerian is based at the Faculty of Law & Political Sciences, Islamic Azad University, Sciences & Research Branch, Terhan. He is the editor-in-Chief of the International Studies Journal (ISJ), which is published quarterly in both Persian and English devoted to international affairs and human rights.
Farshad Zahedi is Assistant Professor in the Department of Journalism and Audiovisual Communication, University of Carlos III of Madrid. Research interests: Iranian cinema and cultural studies; aesthetic roots; gender representations; psychoanalytic criticism; film theories; history of Iranian independent cinema. Teaching: Moving Image History; Film Studies.
Researcher and practitioner on war-to-peace transition and peacebuilding policies.
Political scientist with 5 years of experience at the World Bank on peacebuilding policies in fragile and conflict-affected countries. Conducted research and provided technical assistance on conflict analysis, forced displacement, and linkages between different forms of violence to advance the agenda of conflict prevention in the World Bank’s operations.