Method & Theory in the Study of Religion

Celebrating 30 years of Method & Theory in the Study of Religion
Editor’s Pick: second set of 5 free articles

For almost 30 years, Method & Theory in the Study of Religion has published articles, notes, book reviews and letters which explicitly address the problems of methodology and theory in the academic study of religion. To celebrate the publication of the 30th volume, 15 articles from the journal’s archives will be available as free downloads during 2018.
After sharing the first 5 articles in June and July, the second set of 5 articles is now freely accessible until September 30th. Have a look at the second selection here.

One more set of 5 articles will be unlocked after October.

Shiʿi Piety: Theory and Materiality from Premodern to Postmodern

This one-day workshop brings together graduate students and early career scholars working on topics related to Shiʿism in all periods and from any disciplinary perspective. The workshop is open to work on Zaydi, Twelver, Ismaili and other forms of Shiʿism. The aim is thereby to allow for the discussion both of micro-historical and ethnographic specificities as well as long durée patterns and developments.

The workshop will address the concept of piety in its material expression, its literary representation and its theoretical articulation.

Central topics include:

• Belief and its implications in philosophy, theology, and law
• Rites and rituals in spaces and texts
• Spatial, material, and literary manifestations of piety
• Networks
• Impiety
• The daily lives of pious beings

We particularly welcome scholars working on the intersection between the material expression of piety, and the intellectual or theoretical articulation of what it means to be Shiʿi. Contributions will be expected to be clear in how they define and understand piety, whether a theological conception or as lived tradition.

For consideration, please send a 300-word abstract to by July 15th.

The language of the workshop will be English. Travel subsidies will be available for participants.

About the Leiden University Shiʿi Studies Initiative

Islamic studies is a flourishing field, but the study of Shiʿi Islam in all its forms still remains underpopulated. The primary objective of LUSSI is to connect scholars and address lacunae in the field by promoting the study of Shiʿism in all its expressions and disciplinary approaches.

Deadline: July 15, 2018

Saeid Edalatnejad Curriculum Vitae

SaeidEdalatnejad-minDate of Birth: 1962

Place of Birth: Isfahan–Iran

Marital Status: married

Address: P.O .Box 14155-6195.  Tehran –Iran

Foreign Languages: Proficiency in Arabic (Classic and Modern) and English; amateur in German and Hebrew

 Academic Background:

– PhD in Islamic Studies at the Free University of Berlin, Institute of Islamic Studies (2004-2009).

– M. A. Philosophy, at the Institute of Wisdom and Philosophy, Tehran (1999-2002). The Institute is affiliated to the Ministry of Sciences, Researches and Technology.

– Graduated from Islamic theological seminary of Qum (equivalent PhD), (1982–1997).

– Diploma in Experimental Science (1980), Isfahan.

Main field of Interests: Islamic Studies, Philosophy of Religion, Philosophy of Law and Dialogue between Religions.

Awards and honors

– Fellowship at the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin (2003-2004).

– Fellowship at the Harvard Law School, Islamic Legal Studies Program (2014).

– Guest Professor at Freie Universität Berlin (The Faculty of History and Cultural Studies, Institute of Islamic Studies), summer semester, 2017. The courses for MA students: Intellectual History: Shiite Imāmi School, Theology and Exegesis.


– Academic member at the Encyclopaedia Islamica Foundation, Dept. of Jurisprudence and Law, Tehran (September 2004 until present).

– Academic member at the Azad University of Tehran, Science and Research Branch, Dept. of Islamic Theology and Philosophy (2005-2010).

– Director of Department of Religions at the International Center for Dialogue among Civilizations (2000-2003).

– Director of Islamic Studies Dept. at the International Cultural Organization (1997-2000).

– Editor-in–chief of the scholarly Journal of Hawza and University, Quarterly (1993–1997) published in Qum.


A. Books

Einsicht: Drei Reisen in die innerste Welt des schiitischen Islam, Fotografien von Hans Georg Berger und frühen iranischen Fotografen (in German and Persian), Berlin and Heidelberg: Kehrer, 2017. (I was co-editor).

– The Method of Writing Academic Essays (in Persian), Tehran: Nilufar, 1393/ September 2014, 2016, 2017.

Creation in the Qur’an: Hermeneutic Study of the Old and New Exegeses (in Persian), Tehran: Negah Muaser, 1392/2013.

PhD dissertation on The Shiite Tradition and Modernism: The Codification of the Rights of Religious Minorities in Iranian Law (1906-2004). The revised version (1906-2017) will be published in 2018 by Springer Press.

An Introduction, footnotes concerning comparative study on Christian and Islamic Mysticism in Translation of The Imitation of Christ, Thomas A. Kempis (Tehran: Tarh-e nuw, 2003, 2005, 2011, 2013, and 2016).

On ijtihād: The Essays on the Effectiveness of the Islamic Jurisprudence in Today’s World, ed. by Saeid. Edalatnejad (Tehran: Tarh-e naw, 2003, 2006, and 2009).

Evaluation on Idea’s Nasr Hāmid Abu Zayd (Egyptian scholar, d. 2010), ed. by Saeid. Edalatnejad (Tehran: Mashq-i Imrouz, 2001).

– Editorial of Lessons Presented by Professor Mustafa Malekiān (1992-1995) on the History of Philosophy in the West (from Thales to some Modern Analytical Philosophers), 4 volumes, (Qum: Hawza and University Press, 1996, 2001, 2005).

B. Articles in Journals and Books

  1. Ein Überblick über das lehr- und Erziehungssystem der schiitischen Geistlichkeit im Einsicht, 2017.
  2. A critic on the translation of Joseph Schacht’s Origins of Muhammadan Jurisprudence, in Persian, Jurisprudence and Law Quarterly Book Review, vol. 2, no.5, 2016, pp. 193-206.  
  3. Translation of “Exegetical Genre: Abrogating and Abrogated Verses”, David Powers, in Approaches to the History of the Interpretation of the Quran, ed. Andrew Rippin, Persian version, Tehran: Hekmat 1394/2015.
  4. “The Development of Human Rights in Muslim Societies” in Menschenrechte und inter-religiöse Bildung, (eds) by Manfred L. Pirner, Johannes Lahnemann, Heiner Bielefeldt, Berlin: Eb Verlag, 2015, pp. 105-116. See also in Human Rights and Religion in Educational Contexts, Switzerland, Springer 2016, pp. 115-127.
  5. A Critical Reading on Najam Haider, The Origins of The Shīʽa: Identity, Ritual, and Sacred Space in Eighth Century Kufa, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2011, xvi+ 276, in Quarterly of Iran and Islam (in Persian), vol. 1, No. 1& 2 (1393/2014): 123-144.
  6. Translation of “Through the Lens of Modern Hermeneutics: Authorial Intention in al-Ṭabarī’s and al-Ghazālī’s Interpretations of Q. 24:35”, Ulrika Mårtensson, in Studies on Ṭabarī, Tehran: Khan-e Ketab, 1393/2014: 310-346.
  7. “Pictures, symbols and the media: An Islamic Perspective”, in Media Power and Religions, Eds. By Manfred L. Pirner and Johannes Lähnemann, Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang, 2013, pp. 97-107.
  8. “Theory of Innateness in Islamic Theology: Historical Approach”, Ethical Researches, vol. 1, no. 4 (2012): 67-84.
  9. “Why Encyclopedia?” Iranian Consortium, vol.1, no. 4 (2012): 10-16.
  10. “Salafian Takfiri or al-Jihadiyyun: Origin and Ideas”, Journal of History and Islamic Civilization, vol. 13, no. 9 (2011): 165-194.
  11. “Saadia Gaon: a Jewish Muʽtazili”, Iranian Journal on Philosophical Investigations, vol. 8, no. 13 (2011): 123-138.
  12. “The Islamic Point of View on the Problem of Evil”, Probing the Depths of Evil and Good. Multi religious Views and Case Studies. Gort, Jerald D. Henry Jansen and Hendrik M. Vroom (Eds.), Amsterdam & New York, Rodopi, 2007, pp. 305-319.
  13. Translation of “How to Become a Philosopher?” Bertrand Russell, Madrasah, vol. 2, no. 5 (2007): 10-17.
  14. Translation of “What We Do in Prayer?” by Vincent Brümmer, published in Faith and Modern World, Tehran, The International Center for Dialogue, 2005, pp. 111-34.
  15. “Religious Groups in Afghanistan”, in Persian, Pol-Firozeh, vol. 4, no. 14 (2005): 24-38.
  16. Translation of “Purposes and Rules of Dialogue” by Vincent Brummer, Pol-e Firuzeh 2, no. 8 (2003): 29-45.
  17. “The Closed Gate of Ijihād”, Kian, vol. 8, no. 49, Tehran (1999): 45-58.
  18. Translation of “Religious Pluralism” by John Hick, in A Companion to Philosophy of Religion, Edited by Philip L. Quinn and Charles Taliaferro (Cambridge: Black well, 1997), Pol-e Firozeh, vol. 2, no. 8 (2003): 81-93.
  19. “The New Ijtehād”, Review and Critique of Naqd al- Khitāb al-Dīnī, Nasr, Hamid, Abu Zaid, published, in the Evaluate on Idea’s Nasr Hamid, ed. by S. Edalatnejad (Tehran: Mashq-i  Imrouz, 2001): 57-93.
  20. “The Role of Religions in Minimizing the World’s Crises”, Studies in Inter religious Dialogue, Belgium: Peters, vol. 10/1 (2000): 117-123. Republished in Qazaya Islamiyya, Lebanon, vol. 14/3 (2001): 269-277.
  21. Translation of “Consequentialism”, D. McNaughton, in Rutledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Rutledge, in Organon, vol. 4, no.16 (2000): 121-131.
  22. Translation of “Is Morality Absolute or Relative?” Chapter 5 of Existentialism, For and Against, P. Roubiczek, Naqd and Nazar Quarterly, vol. 4, no. 14 (1998): 134-156.
  23. Translation of “The Language of Religion”, William Alston, in Encyclopedia of Philosophy, ed. by Paul Edwards, Hawza and University Quarterly, vol. 2, no. 8 (1996): 34-46.


C. Articles in Encyclopedias

C.1. Encyclopaedia of the World of Islam (EWI) in Persian

“War/Jang”, “Jihad”, “Dhimmī”, “Smoking/Dukhaniyāt”, “Daff”, “Hujjat in Jurisprudence”, “Tasnim”, ‘Taghābun”, “Takāthur”, “Hujjat al-Islam”, “The Rights of Religious Minorities in Iranian Law”, “The Rights of Muslim Minorities in non-Islamic Countries”, “Ḥaṣkafī, Muhammad b. Ali”, “Husayn b. Sa ̔īd Ahwāzī”, “Khazrajī, Ahmad b. Abd al-Rahmān”, Khaṣṣāf, Ahmad b. ‘Umar”, “Encyclopaedia of Islam published in Leiden/da’ira al-maʽārif Islām”, “Saḥnūn Abd- al-Salām b. Said”, “Salafiyya Jadīd/ new Salafiyya”, “Joseph Schacht (Shākht)”, “Intellectuality (Rawshanfikrī) in the Arab World”, “Orientalism (Sharq shināsī)”, and “Shaybānī, Muhammad b. Ḥassan”, “Sadr Shahid”, “Sadr al-Sharī‛a thānī”.


C.2. Articles in other Encyclopedias

– Translation of following legal entries from the Encyclopaedia of the Quran, Ed. By Jane Dammen McAuliffe (Leiden: Brill, 2001-2005); “marriage and divorce”, “inheritance”, “insanity”, “poll tax”, “pilgrimage”, “circumcision”, “menstruation”, “widow”, “economy”, “slavery”, “burial”, “lawful and unlawful”, “animal life”, “blood money”, “fasting”, “lactation”, “stoning”, “usury”, “witness”, “witnessing and testifying”, “adultery”, “abortion”, “illegitimacy”, “debt”, “fosterage”, “pledge”, “theft”, “wine”, “ritual purity”, “Safā and Marwa”, and about other thirty legal and theological entries.

– “Six abstracts on different Iranian Encyclopedias” in Encyclopedias about Muslim Civilizations (Muslim Civilizations Abstracts), ed. Aptin Khanbaghi, London, Aga Khan University, 2009.

– “Baghdādi Manjanīghī, Ya ̔qūb b. Ṣāber” for Philosophers of War, Washington: ABC- CLIO publisher, 2013.

– “Taxation”, in Encyclopedia of Muhammad in History, Washington: ABC- CLIO publisher, 2014.

– Translation of following entries from Dictionary of the History of Ideas, New York, 1975. “Ethics of Stoicism”, “Perennial philosophy”, “Islamic Conception of Intellectual life”, “Gnosticism”, “Freewill in Theology”, “Dualism in Philosophy and Religion”, “Determinism in Theology”, “Alienation in Christian Theology”, Published in Farhang Tarikh Andisheha, Tehran: Suaād, 2006.


– The Legal Status of Religious Minorities in the Shiite fiqh and Iranian Laws (in English and in Persian).



(Location: Berlin / Closing Date: May 15, 2018)

The Berlin-based Forum Transregionale Studien invites scholars to apply for five postdoctoral fellowships for the academic year 2018/19 for the research program


EUME seeks to rethink key concepts and premises that link and divide Europe and the Middle East. The program draws on the international expertise of scholars in and outside of Germany and is embedded in university and extra-university research institutions in Berlin. It supports historical-critical philology, rigorous engagement with the literatures of the Middle East and their histories, the social history of cities and the study of Middle Eastern political and philosophical thought as central fields of research not only for area or cultural studies, but also for European intellectual history and other academic disciplines. The program explores modernity as a historical space and conceptual frame.

The program puts forward three programmatic ideas:
1) supporting research that demonstrates the rich and complex historical legacies and entanglements between Europe and the Middle East; 2) re-examining genealogical notions of mythical ‘beginnings’, ‘origins’, and ‘purity’ in relation to culture and society; and 3) rethinking key concepts of a shared modernity in light of contemporary cultural, social, and political entanglements that supersede identity discourses as well as national, cultural or regional canons and epistemologies that were established in the nineteenth century.

EUME supports and builds upon the following interconnected research fields:

is directed by Ulrike Freitag and Nora Lafi, both of the Zentrum Moderner Orient, Berlin. It contributes to the debate on plurality, citizenship and civil society from the historical experience of conviviality and social, cultural, ethnic, and religious differences and conflict in the cities around the Mediterranean;

is directed by Gudrun Krämer, Institute of Islamic Studies, Freie Universität Berlin. It analyzes modern Middle Eastern thought in the framework of discourses on authenticity, modernity, secularity, and justice;

is directed by Angelika Neuwirth, Freie Universität Berlin. This research group situates the foundational text of Islam within the religious and literary landscape of late antiquity, early Islamic History and Arabic philology, and combines a historicization of its genesis with an analysis of its hermeneutics, its reception and perception in Europe and the Middle East;

is directed by Friederike Pannewick, Center for Near and Middle Eastern Studies, Philipps-Universität Marburg, and Samah Selim, Rutgers University. This research group reassesses literary entanglements, translations, and processes of canonization between the Middle East and other regions.

is a special forum, directed by Amnon Raz-Krakotzkin, Ben-Gurion University, that attempts to rethink key concepts of modernity like secularity, tradition, or religion in the context of experiences, interpretations, and critiques from the Middle East.

EUME is interested in developing new fields of research that bridge the gap between social science approaches and cultural studies in questions relating to ongoing transformation processes in Europe and the Middlea East (in cooperation with Cilja Harders, Otto Suhr Institute of Political Science, Freie Universität Berlin, Rachid Ouaissa, Political Science Department, Center for Near and Middle Eastern Studies, Philipps-Universität Marburg and Kader Konuk, Universität Duisburg-Essen).


The fellowships are intended primarily for scholars of art history, history, literature, philology, political philosophy, political science, religion and sociology who want to carry out their research projects in connection with the Berlin program. Applicants should be at the postdoctoral level and should have obtained their doctorate within the last seven years.

Fellows gain the opportunity to pursue research projects of their own choice within the overall framework of Europe in the Middle East – the Middle East in Europe. Successful applicants will be fellows of EUME at the Forum Transregionale Studien, and associate members of one of the university or non-university research institutes listed below.

As a rule, the fellowships start on 1 October 2018 and will end on 31 July 2019. Postdoctoral fellows will receive a monthly stipend of 2.500 € plus supplement depending on their personal situation. Organisational support regarding visa, insurances, housing, etc. will be provided. Fellows are obliged to work in Berlin and to help shape the seminars and working discussions related to their research field. Scholars are also invited to apply with their own funding. The working language of EUME is English.


An application should be made in explicit relation to one of the research fields and consist of
–  the attached application cover sheet
–  a curriculum vitae,
–  a project description (no longer than 5 pages), stating what the scholar will work on in Berlin if granted a fellowship

The application should be submitted by e-mail as three separate word documents or PDF files in English and should be received by May 15, 2018, sent to:

Europe in the Middle East – the Middle East in Europe (EUME)
c/o Forum Transregionale Studien
Attn: Georges Khalil
Wallotstrasse 14, 14193 Berlin
Fax +49 30 – 89 001 440


EUROPE IN THE MIDDLE EAST—THE MIDDLE EAST IN EUROPE (EUME) has been initiated in 2006 as a joint research program of the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities, the Fritz Thyssen Foundation and the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin. It builds upon the previous work of the Working Group Modernity and Islam (1996-2006). Since 2011, EUME is continued at the Forum Transregionale Studien.

In scholarly terms, EUME is directed by a Collegium that currently consists of the following persons: Ulrike Freitag (Zentrum Moderner Orient, Berlin), Cilja Harders (Otto Suhr Institute of Political Science, Freie Universität Berlin), Kader Konuk (Institut für Turkistik, Universität Duisburg-Essen), Gudrun Krämer (Institute of Islamic Studies, Freie Universität Berlin), Nora Lafi (Zentrum Moderner Orient, Berlin), Angelika Neuwirth (Freie Universität Berlin), Rachid Ouaissa (Center for Near and Middle Eastern Studies, Philipps-Universität Marburg), Friederike Pannewick (Center for Near and Middle Eastern Studies, Philipps-Universität Marburg), Amnon Raz-Krakotzkin, (Ben-Gurion University, Beer Sheva), Samah Selim (Rutgers University), and Stefan Weber (Museum for Islamic Art, Berlin).

The Berlin-based Forum Transregionale Studien is a research organization that promotes the internationalization of research in the humanities and social sciences. The Forum provides scope for collaboration among researchers with different regional and disciplinary perspectives and appoints researchers from all over the world as Fellows. In cooperation with universities and research institutions in Berlin and outside, it carries out research projects that examine other regions of the world and their relationship to Germany and Europe systematically and with new questions. It currently supports four research programs and initiatives: ART HISTORIES AND AESTHETIC PRACTICES, Prisma Ukraïna: Research Network Eastern Europe, ZUKUNFTSPHILOLOGIE: Revisiting the Canons of Textual Scholarship, the Academy in Exile, and EUROPE IN THE MIDDLE EAST—THE MIDDLE EAST IN EUROPE (EUME).

For more information on the Forum Transregionale Studien, please visit:

For more information on EUME and its research fields, please visit:

For information on the research institutions in Berlin participating in EUME, please visit:

– Berlin Graduate School Muslim Cultures and Societies, FU Berlin

– Otto Suhr Institute of Political Science, FU Berlin

– Corpus Coranicum, Berlin-Brandenburgische Akademie der Wissenschaften

– Leibniz-Zentrum Moderner Orient

– Friedrich Schlegel Graduate School of Literary Studies, FU Berlin

– Institute of Islamic Studies, FU Berlin

– Museum for Islamic Art

– Seminar for Semitic and Arabic Studies, FU Berlin

– Center for Near and Middle Eastern Studies, Philipps-Universität Marburg

– Institut für Turkistik, Universität Duisburg-Essen

Deadline: May 15, 2017

MA Intellectual Encounters of the Islamicate World

The aim of the MA Intellectual Encounters of the Islamicate World is to provide international graduate students with a thorough understanding of the deep and diverse links between the Muslim, Jewish and Christian intellectual contributions during the medieval period. The program is characterised by a strongly research-driven, interdisciplinary and interreligious approach with an emphasis on primary texts in original language (Arabic). Students will be trained and mentored by internationally renowned guest lecturers who are counted among the leading experts in their respective fields of research.
The primarily web-based MA program also includes three face-to-face sessions in Cordoba (prov.) and Berlin per academic year during which the students and teachers will actually come together for discussion, teaching and examination. Freie Universität Berlin offers this one-year, full-time MA program of 60 ECTS to an expected number of 20 students, many of whom are from the region of the Middle East. The language of instruction is English.

Applications are now open! The application period for the academic year 2018/19 is from 15 April until 31 May 2018.

Please also note that there will be two program presentation sessions on May 2nd and May 7th. Our team will briefly present the MA and will be available afterwards to answer any questions you might have.
More information here:

For more information:
For direct enquiries:

The Future of Iran’s Past: Nizam al-Mulk Remembered


The Future of Iran’s Past is a critical study of the life and afterlife of Nizam al-Mulk (1018-92), celebrated Persian vizier and stalwart figure of power and authority in medieval Islamic society. He became the de facto ruler of a vast empire, with a final apotheosis as Islamic history’s archetypal good vizier. Such was his standing among the glitterati of his era that he was considered an ideal replacement for the Abbasid caliph himself.

As well as the outstanding figure in a long run of great viziers and administrators who dominated premodern Islamic politics, al-Mulk is remembered as the most prominent politician of the period to perceive new beginnings and radical departures. Neguin Yavari offers a close reading of al-Mulk’s many legacies, revealing a complex imbrication of political and religious authority, as well as pre-Islamic and Islamic influences that have together shaped modern Iran. She shows that the new Iran of al-Mulk’s singular vision, rather than a tale of uninterrupted Iranisation, is imbued with an extensive interplay of residual and emergent tendencies.

Neguin Yavari is a senior fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study, Central European University. She studied medieval history at Columbia University, and has written on medieval Islamic history, political thought and international history. Her books include Advice for the Sultan: Prophetic Voices and Secular Politics in Medieval Islam (2014) and the co-edited Global Medieval: Mirrors for Princes Reconsidered (2015).

Related Topics

‘The Future of Iran’s Past is a highly original and extraordinarily sophisticated exploration of medieval Islamic political thought and its continuing legacy. Yavari has performed an inestimable service to the intellectual history of Islam. She subjects this genre of writing to a deep and sustained interpretation.’—Faisal Devji, Fellow of St. Antony’s College, University of Oxford and author of Landscapes of the Jihad: Militancy, Morality, Modernity.

‘So much more than the life and times of medieval Iran’s greatest vizier, The Future of Iran’s Past serves up penetrating insights into the nature of pre-modern biography, the complex and often opaque workings of Islamic governance, and Iran’s confrontation with its own history right down to the present day.’— Richard W. Bulliet, Professor of History, Columbia University; author of Islam: The View from the Edge and The Case for Islamo-Christian Civilisation

‘This unconventional ‘biography’ of Nizam al-Mulk is woven around five exuberant essays, with challenging, often brilliant insights, on themes that lie at the heart of the Saljuq polity and dominion over which Nizam al-Mulk presided. They elucidate a novel and sophisticated interpretation of the political nature of Nizam al-Mulk’s vision and its legacy.’—John Gurney, Emeritus Fellow, Wadham College, University of Oxford

‘With this outstanding study of Nizam al Mulk, one of the towering figures of Iranian-Islamic medieval history, Yavari surpasses the limits of traditional biographical writing. In this highly readable study, her critical reading of the sources and masterly approach to the literature challenge our understanding of Saljuq rule and culture.’—Christoph Werner, Chair of Iranian Studies, Philipps-Universität Marburg

Source: Hurst Publishers

Postrevolutionary Iran: A Political Handbook

Mehrzad Boroujerdi and Kourosh Rahimkhani, Post-revolutionary Iran: A Political Handbook (New York: Syracuse University Press, May 15, 2018).

A comprehensive, empirical study of Iranian political institutions and elites over the last four decades.

“As an exhaustive and systematically organized compilation of data and reliable information on the postrevolutionary Iranian political elites (including their social and regional origins, career paths, and ideological orientations, family ties, etc.), as well as chronologies of major events and detailed descriptive statistics on key state institutions, political parties, and elections at all levels, this pioneering work will serve not only as an indispensable standard reference for the study of Iranian politics, but also as an invaluable source of data and ideas for empirically based studies by scholars and students of Iran for years to come.”—Ali Banuazizi, professor of political science, Boston College

“Boroujerdi and Rahimkhani have mapped out, with impressive rigor and erudition, the often inter-locking military, clerical, and political elite that has ruled Iran for the last thirty seven years. As much a book about Who Rules Iran as a Who’s Who in the halls of power in the Islamic Republic of Iran. An indispensable source for anyone studying modern Iranian society and politics.”—Abbas Milani, Hamid and Christina Moghadam Director of Iranian Studies, Stanford University

“A monumental achievement. I am unaware of any other source that provides such a rich collection of political data about Iran. Western political scientists often complain about the lack of longitudinal data in order to apply modern analytical techniques to the politics of Third World countries. This compendium goes very far to respond to that need.”—Gary Sick, Columbia University

“This product of 14 years of teamwork is an indispensable reference source for anyone with serious interest in contemporary Iran. . . . The work can justly be placed among the best elite studies done recently anywhere in the world.”—Ervand Abrahamian, author of Iran between Two Revolutions
Postrevolutionary Iran

Mehrzad Boroujerdi is O’Hanley Faculty Scholar and professor of political science at Syracuse University’s Maxwell School, and former president of the International Society for Iranian Studies. He is the author of Iranian Intellectuals and the West: The Tormented Triumph of Nativism and editor of Mirror for the Muslim Prince: Islam and the Theory of Statecraft. Kourosh Rahimkhani is a doctoral candidate in political science at Binghamton University. His research focuses on politics of ethnoreligious identities, nondemocratic elections, and authoritarian politics.

Source: Syracuse University Press

Einsicht (Insight and Understanding)

Einsicht, Drei Reisen in die innerste Welt des schiitischen Islam (Insight and Understanding: Three Journeys to the innermost world of Shī‛ism) is the title of a successful cultural exchange project between Germany and Iran. Given that a photo speaks more than thousands of words and that a camera is a means of knowledge for those who love to know, the project firstly presents a part of early history of photography, and secondly pays attention to the dialogue of cultures through the photographers lens and the language of art. Three journeys in the title refers to the voyage of Nasir al-Din Shah with his court photographer Reza Akkasbashi to Iraq (Najaf, Karbala and Samarra) in 1872; the trip of Muzaffar al-Din Shah’s photographers to Iraq in 1905 and the voyage of German well-known photographer Hans Georg Berger (2000- 2005) to religious schools of Iran in different cities including Qum, Mashhad and Isfahan. The project published a book (245 pages) with the same title and six exhibitions (of selected photos) will be held in the cities Mashhad, Tehran, Qum, Isfahan, Berlin and Freiburg.

The book includes six short essays and about two hundred selected photographs taken during these journeys. Among them are historical images of holy shrines in Iraq and Iran, old and new Shiite centers of training and education of religious students as well as numerous old and new portraits of those students and their professors. Most photographs, especially those taken from a balloon above the cities of Najaf, Karbala and Samarra in 1871, are of great importance in the history of photography. They attract the eyes of every specialist in the field and open their language to praise such a unique effort at the time. The historical photos come from the archive of Golestan Palace Tehran. The contemporary ones come from the archive of the photographer. The authors in their essays deal with old and new photos in accordance with their expertise, and with different views. This bilingual book (German and Persian) has two editors: Dr. Boris von Brauchitsch and Dr. Saeid Edalatnejad. The book was published in high quality and standard in September 2017 in Germany by KEHRER Verlag (ISBN 978-3-86828-818-6). The foreign ministry of Germany dedicates the book to those public and university Iranian libraries which request the book by paying the cost of mail from Berlin to the given cities. For ordering the book please click here.

The Iranian foreign ministry, the Organization of Islamic relations and culture as well as several non-governmental institutions support the holding of the exhibitions in those different cities. They are placed under the High Patronage of the National Commissions of UNESCO. The first exhibition is held on 6th October 2017 in Mashhad and welcomes the visitors until 21th October. The exhibition of Tehran will be held at Golestan Palace on the first of November. Qum opens on November 25, and Isfahan on December 20. In Berlin, the exhibition opens on January 12, 2018 at Bumiller Collection (University Museum Islamic Art). For the detail of the content of the book and the time table of other exhibitions, see the website

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