ASPS 2013 Conference Bios
Pooriya Alimoradi is a PhD student at the Department of Near and Middle Eastern Civilization at University of Toronto. He holds a MA degree in the History and Philosophy of Religion from Concordia University and another M.A. in Ancient Iranian History from University of Tehran. He is interested in Iranian history, languages and culture in the Late Antiquity, religions of ancient Iran including Zoroastrianism, Manichaeism and Mazdakism, as well as the study of Zoroastrianism in the early centuries of Islam in Iran. Since 2000, he has been working on ancient Iranian languages including Avestan, Old Persian, Middle Persian, Parthian and Manichean. He is a recipient of the Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Doctoral Scholarship (SSHRC 2015-18), “Houtan Scholarship” (2013, 2014, and 2015), “Soudavar Memorial Foundation Travel Grant” (2013), “Concordia University Conference and Exposition Award” (2013), “Concordia University, Faculty of Arts and Science student conference travel support” (2013), “Houtan Scholarship” (2012), “Concordia University Merit Scholarship” (2011) and “Concordia University International Tuition Fee Remission Award” (2011). As of December 2012, he is the student member of the Association for the Study of Persianate Societies (ASPS). Since December 2011, Pooriya Alimoradi is the webmaster of www.persianatesocieties.org. Additionally, he is the former Editor and webmaster of the Bulletin of Ancient Iranian History (BAIH), former Editor of a few advertising magazines and several students’ magazines.
Saïd Amir Arjomand (Ph.D, University of Chicago, 1980) is Distinguished Service Professor of Sociology and Director of the Stony Brook Institute for Global Studies. He is the founder and former President (1996-2002, 2005-08) of the Association for the Study of Persianate Societies, and Editor of its organ, Journal of Persianate Studies. He served as the Editor of International Sociology, the journal of the International Sociological Association (1998-2003) and Editor-in-Chief of Studies on Persianate Societies (2003-05). He has been Fellow of St. Antony’s College, Oxford, 1982-83, Member of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, 1984-85, and Visiting Professor of Sociology and Development Studies, University of California, Berkeley, 1989, the Sharpe Visiting Professor of Islamic Studies, the University of Chicago, 1993-94, Member of the Swedish Collegium for Advanced Study in Social Sciences, 1998, the inaugural Crane Fellow and Visiting Professor of Public Affairs at the Woodrow Wilson School of Princeton University, 2004-05, and Carnegie Scholar, 2006-08. He has published over a hundred articles in the humanities and social science journals in the last thirty-five years, and is the author of The Shadow of God and the Hidden Imam: Religion, Political Organization and Societal Change in Shi'ite Iran from the Beginning to l890 (l984), The Turban for the Crown. The Islamic Revolution in Iran (1988), After Khomeini. Iran under his Successors (Oxford University Press, 2009), and the editor of several books, including Rethinking Civilizational Analysis (With Edward Tiryakian, 2004), Constitutionalism and Political Reconstruction (2007), and Constitutional Politics in the Middle East (2008), The Rule of Law, Islam and Constitutional Politics in Egypt and Iran (with Nathan J. Brown, 2013), Worlds of Difference (with Elisa Reis, 2013), and Social Theory and Regional Studies in the Global Age (in press).
Sussan Babaei joined the Courtauld Institute of Art, University of London, in 2013 to take up a newly established post teaching on the arts of Iran and Islam. She attended the University of Tehran's Faculty of Fine Arts (BA in graphic design); moved to the USA to study for a Master's degree in Italian Renaissance and American Arts as the American University in Washington, DC, followed by a PhD at the Institute of Fine Arts, NYU, where she focused on the arts of Islam and on Safavid Iran. She has taught at Smith College, University of Michigan and at the Institut für Kunstgeschichte, Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich where she was the Allianz Visiting Professor. Her publications include the co-authored Persian Drawings in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, (1989), Slaves of the Shah: New Elites of Safavid Iran (2004), and Shirin Neshat (2013). She is the author of the award-winning Isfahan and Its Palaces: Statecraft, Shi‘ism and the Architecture of Conviviality in Early Modern Iran (2008) and articles in Muqarnas, Journal of the Early Modern History, and the Getty Research Journal among others. Her research interests in early modern Iran (16th-18th c) and the Persianate world concern kingship and its representations in urban space and architecture, transcultural visuality and imperial notions of exoticism, mercantile communities and their domestic visual staging of distinction, urban and social habits of seeing (murals, private objects, album painting), and representations of sexuality in word and image. She also writes about historiographic amnesia in writing about contemporary arts of Iran. Most recently, her research has been supported by grants from the United States National Endowment for the Humanities, the Fulbright (for research in Egypt and Syria) and the Getty Research Institute in Los Angeles.
Ariana Barkeshli is a concert pianist, music educator, and researcher. A former professor of music at the Art University of Tehran, Barkeshli is currently a faculty member at the Dutchess Community College School of Music in Poughkeepsie, New York. A recipient of numerous international music awards, she has performed repertoires from the music of Bach to that of modern western and Persian composers in numerous concert halls, universities, conferences, and benefit concerts in the United States, Europe, and Iran. Prof. Barkeshli is the first Persian pianist invited to perform as a soloist with English Chamber Orchestra at the City Theatre in Tehran, the first Persian pianist to perform a recital at the Meridian International Center in Washington, D.C., as well as at the National Gallery of Arts music series, also in Washington, D.C. She has been dubbed "a keyboard Scheherazade" by a Hudson Valley music critic and was recently nominated one of the "100 pioneer and influential Iranian women" by the British Broadcasting Corporation.
Ariana Barkeshli began her artistic life at an early age. A native of Tehran, she received her first music lesson from her father, the scholar, physicist, and musicologist Dr. Mehdi Barkeshli. Later, she attended Tehran conservatory, the Amiens Conservatory, the Paris, Conservatory (foreign division), and the State University New York. She has worked with renowned pianists Prof. Yvonne Loriod (wife of the French composer Olivier Messiaen), Prof. Germaine Mounier, and Prof. Vladimir Feltsman.
Houchang-Esfandiar Chehabi is a professor of international relations and history at Boston University. After receiving his PhD in political science at Yale in 1986, he taught at Harvard 1986-94. He has held visiting appointments of various sorts at the University of Oxford, UCLA, the University of St. Andrews, the University of Cambridge, the Harvard Divinity School, the Universidad Argentina de la Empresa, and the Institut für Iranistik of the Austrian Academy of Sciences, and was president of the International Society for Iranian Studies 2010-2012. He is the author, co-author, editor, or co-editor of eleven books, and has published over fifty articles. His main research interest is the cultural history of Iran and its neighbors.
Ghazzal Dabiri holds a Ph.D. in Iranian Studies in the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures from UCLA. She is currently a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Ghent and has taught at Columbia University, UCLA, and CSUF. Her research focuses on the development of and cross-sections between Iranian historiography and Persian epics as well as on the social history of early Islamic Iran. She has published the following articles:
- “Visions of Heaven and Hell from Late Antiquity in the Near East” in Quaderni di Studi Indo-Mediterranei (Winter 2009)
- “The Shahnama: Between the Samanids and Ghaznavids” in Iranian Studies, the Shahnama Special Issue (February 2010).
- “Historiography and the Sho’ubiya Movement” in Journal of Persianate Studies (2013)
Other publications include: “The Mother Tongue: An Introduction to the Persian Language.” PBS Frontline: Tehran Bureau and ;“Shiraz Nights.” PBS Frontline: Tehran Bureau, August 10, 2009.
She is currently working on a book project entitled “Kings as Moral and Heroic Types in Early Islamic Historiography and Persian Epics,” which was the subject of her dissertation, “The Origins and Development of Persian Epics” which won Honorable Mention for Best Dissertation from the Foundation for Iranian Studies in 2007. She was a recipient of a Fulbright Research Grant for the 2011-2012 academic year. She currently sits on the Board of Directors of the Association for the Study of Persianate Societies (ASPS)
Munir Drkić (Ph.D. University of Sarajevo, 2013) is Assistant Professor of the Persian Language at the University of Sarajevo. He is also the head of the Institute for Linguistic Researches at the Faculty of Philosophy, University of Sarajevo, and an editorial board member of the journal for linguistics and literary studies Pismo. He received his PhD in Linguistics at the University of Sarajevo in 2013 with a dissertation entitled Discourse of multilingualism in Jalaluddin Rumi's Masnavi. In the past nine years he has published over twenty articles in the fields of Linguistics, Persian language and Literature, Persianate culture in Bosnia and Bosnian literary heritage in Persian. Munir Drkić co-authored a book about a variant of the Arabic script for Bosnian, Grafija i leksika Sehletul-vusula (The Museum of Herzegovina, Mostar, 2010), and translated three classical Persian books into Bosnian: Mohammad ben Monavvar's Asrarot-touhid (Al-Hoda Publishers, Tehran, 2006), Jalaluddin Rumi's Fihe ma fih (Bookline, Sarajevo, 2011) and a selection of Tarjome-ye Tafsir-e Tabari (Bookline, Sarajevo, 2012). He is currently working on a Bosnian-Persian dictionary (2011-2016) and a monograph about Ahmad Sudi Bosnavi, a sixteenth century Bosnian scholar and commentator of the Divan of Hafez, Sadi's Golestan and Bustan and Rumi's Masnavi.
Lejla Ganijun (2.6.1988, Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina) is studying for her master's degree on Faculty of Philosophy in Sarajevo, Department for Persian language and literature. After elementary school, she started her studies at Gazi Husrev-bey's medresa, respectable islamic high school in Sarajevo. Her interests are literature, languages and ancient cultures. She is currently working as a journalist at one radio station in Sarajevo.
Jo-Ann Gross (Ph.D, New York University, 1982) is Professor of Middle Eastern and Central Eurasian History at The College of New Jersey. She serves as Vice-President of the Association for the Study of Persianate Societies (ASPS) and is the Director of the Central Eurasian Research Fund (CERF), which she founded in 2005 to support the publications of scholars in Central Asia. Her past professional activities include her position as Executive Secretary for the International Society for Iranian Studies (ISIS) from 1987-90, member of the Board of Directors for the Association for Central Asia Studies from 1995-2005, and member of the Editorial Board of the International Journal of Middle East Studies from 1996-2000. She has been a member of the School of Historical Studies of the Institute of Advanced Study in Princeton, 1995-96 and was elected as an honorary member of the Academy of Sciences of the Republic of Tajikistan in 2012. She has published widely on aspects of Sufism, shrine culture, and oral narratives in Central Asia and is the author (with Asom Urunbaev) of The Letters of Khwaja ‘Ubayd Allah Ahrar and his Associates (Brill, 2002) and Musul'manskaya Tsentral'naya Aziya: Religioznost' i Obshchestvo - Izbrannye Stat'i [Islamic Central Asia: Religiosity and Society - Collected Works] (Dushanbe, 2004), and the editor of Muslims in Central Asia: Expressions of Identity and Change (Duke University Press, 1992). In 2012 she guest-edited a volume of the Journal of Persianate Studies entitled, “The Pamir: Shrine Traditions, Human Ecology and Identity” and is currently completing two books: Muslim Shrines and Spiritual Culture in the Perso-Islamic World, under contract with IB Taurus, and a co-edited volume (with Devin DeWeese) entitled, Sufism and Islam in Central Asia. Her most recently published articles are “Foundational Legends, Shrines, and Isma’ili Identity in Tajik Badakhshan,” in Muslims and Others in Sacred Space,” ed. by Margaret Jean Cormack,” (Oxford University Press, 2013), pp. 164-192 and “The Motif of the Cave and the Funerary Narratives of Nāṣir-i Khusraw,” in Orality and Textuality in the Iranian World, ed. byJulia Rubanovich and Shaul Shaked (Brill Series, Jerusalem Studies in Religion and Culture, in press).
Ahmad Karimi-Hakkak is professor of Persian Language, literature and Cultures at the University of Maryland and Chair of the Middle Eastern Studies Department at the School of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures. He has studied in Iran and the United States, receiving his Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from Rutgers University in 1979. Karimi-Hakkak is the author, editor or translator of over twenty books and around one hundred and fifty research articles. The study of language, literature and culture in their various sociopolitical contexts and along the diachronic dimension has been at the center of his scholarship. He counts Recasting Persian Poetry: Scenarios of Poetic Modernity in Iran (University of Utah Press, 1995), Essays on Nima Yushij: Animating Modernity in Persian Poetry (Brill, 2004), and Strange Times, My Dear: The PEN Anthology of Contemporary Iranian Literature (Arcade, 2005) as most representative of his contributions to the study of Persian literature. In 2012 his landmark book Recasting Persian Poetry was reissued in paperback form by Oneworld Publications of London. He has also written entries on Iran and Persian literature for many reference works, including The Encyclopedia Britannica, The Encyclopaedia Iranica, and The Encyclopedia of Translation Studies. Karimi-Hakkak has won numerous awards and honors, and has served as President of the International Society for Iranian Studies (ISIS) and several other professional academic organizations.
Tea Krizmanić was born on September 13, 1989 in Zadar, Republic of Croatia. After elementary school and Gymnasium, I came to Sarajevo, Bosnia & Herzegovina and started my studies of persian language and literature at the Faculty of philosophy in Sarajevo. Right now, I'm on my first year of master's degree and I'm interested in old manuscripts and mongolian era in Iran.
Paul Losensky received his Ph.D. from the University of Chicago and is currently Associate Professor in the Department of Central Eurasian Studies and the Department of Comparative Literature at Indiana University, Bloomington, where he teaches Persian language and literature and translation studies. His research focuses on Persian literary historiography, biographical writing, literary translation, and the relations between poetry and the other arts. He is especially interested in the Fresh Style poetry of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, a literary movement that extended across the expanse of the Persianate world, from India and Central Asia across Persia and even into the Ottoman empire. His publications include Welcoming Fighāni: Imitation and Poetic Individuality in the Safavid-Mughal Ghazal (1998), Farid ad-Din ‘Attār's Memorial of God's Friends: Lives and Sayings of Sufis (2009), numerous articles on Persian poetry and literary history, and frequent contributions to Encyclopedia of Islam and Encyclopaedia Iranica. He has recently published In the Bazaar of Love: Selected Poems of Amir Khusrau with Penguin Press India with Sunil Sharma and is currently working on a book on the Persian master poet of the seventeenth century, Sā’eb Tabrizi.
Sepehr Mikailian is an Iranian-born filmmaker living in New York City. He started his studies in performing arts at the Iranian National Radio and Television Academy and later majored in Theatrical Arts at the College of Art and Architecture at the Open University of Iran. For the past decade Mikailian has been active in various aspects of production in Iranian cinema not only as assistant director and producer, but also as cinematographer, videographer and actor. His production experience exceeds 20 feature films including assistant to Bahman Ghobadi in No One Knows About Persian Cats and Rhino Seasonand production coordinator for over 15 documentaries for Iranian and international venues such as Aljazeerah English, ARTE and Canal Plus. Mikailian began directing and producing his first documentary upon migrating to the US in 2010. Counting Down the Years (working title) portrays the life in exile of the legendary Iranian actor Behrooz Vossoughi who has been living in the US for the past 30 years.
Rudi Matthee (Ph.D. UCLA, 1991) is Munroe Distinguished Professor of Middle Eastern History at the University of Delaware. He is the former president (2002-05 and 2008-11) of the Association for the Study of Persianate Societies. He served as book review editor for Iranian Studies, 1996-2006, is coeditor of Der Islam, and the consulting editor for Safavid history for the Encyclopaedia Iranica. In 2002-03 he was at a fellow at the Institute of Advanced Study, Princeton. In 2011 he served as the Roshan Professor of Persian Studies at the University of Maryland. He has published some fifty articles on Safavid and Qajar Iran as well as Egypt. He authored The Politics of Trade in Safavid Iran: Silk for Silver, 1600-1730 (Cambridge University Press, 1999), recipient of prize for best non-Persian language book on Iranian history, 1999, awarded by the Iranian Ministry of Culture; honorable mention for British-Kuwaiti Friendship prize for best book on the Middle East published in Great Britain, 1999; as well as The Pursuit of Pleasure: Drugs and Stimulants in Iranian History, 1500-1900 (Princeton University Press, 2005), recipient of the MESA Albert Hourani Book Prize, and of the ISIS Saidi Sirjani Prize; Iqtisad va siyasat-i khariji-yi `asr-i Safavi, trans. and ed. Hasan Zandiyeh. (Tehran, 2008); Persia in Crisis: Safavid Decline and the Fall of Isfahan (London: I.B. Tauris, 2012), recipient of the British-Kuwaiti Friendship Prize; and, with Willem Floor and Patrick Clawson, The Monetary History of Iran, 1500-1925 (London, I.B. Tauris, 2013). He coedited Iran and Beyond: Essays in Honor of Nikki R. Keddie (with Beth Baron, Mazda, 2000); Iran and the Surrounding World: Interactions in Culture and Cultural Politics (with Nikki Keddie, University of Washington Press, 2002); and Portugal, the Persian Gulf and Safavid Persia (with Jorge Flores, Leuven: Peeters, 2011).
Parvaneh Pourshariati Currently the President of the Association for the Study of Persianate Societies (2012-2015), Pourshariati is Associate Professor of Iranian and Islamic Studies in the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures at the Ohio State University, and Associated Faculty in the Department of History and the Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies at OSU. Pourshariati’s research has been supported by the Social Science Research Council (SSRC), the Hilda Blair Ray Fellowship of the American Association for University Women (AAUW) the Shaykh Hamad Fellowship of the American Numismatic Society (ANS), the American Institute of Iranian Studies, and Mellon Fellowship, among others. She has been a Lady Davis Visiting Professor at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (Fall 2012) and a Visitor at the Institute for Advanced Studies (Summer 2012).
Pourshariati is a member of Mondes iraniens et indiens of the CNRS in Paris, and a Collaborator of Institut für Iranistik, Freie Universität, Berlin. Chair of the Organizational Committees of ASPS/SARAJEVO 2013, and centrally involved in the organization of ASPS/HYDERABAD 2012, she has served on the Board of Directors of ASPS since 2007, and is a member of the Editorial Board of the Iran Nameh, andthe Journal of Persianate Studies. She is currently at work on a number of projects, including the sequel to her Decline and Fall of the Sasanian Empire (I.B. Tauris in 2008), dubbed a “path-breaking,” and “monumental work of first-class scholarship.” Pourshariati recently guest-edited a Special Double-Issue of the Journal of Persianate Studies: 6.1-2: Recent Trends in Late Antique Iranian Studies, Brill, 2013. Closely collaborating with colleagues in Europe and the Middle East, her articles have appeared in various journals of the field. Together with her husband, professor Hans Schoutens (CUNY), Pourshariati has established the annual Houshang Pourshariati Iranian Studies Book Award in memory of her father, the late Houshang Pourshariati (1934-2004), which has been administered through the Middle East Studies Association of North America (MESA) since 2005.
Shapoor Pourshariati is a filmmaker who works professionally across media with a concentration in sound recording. He received his Bachelor of Fine Arts in Film and Media Arts from the City University of New York. For over 20 years he has worked for national news programs and PBS documentary programs as a sound engineer and director of photography. He has won an Academy Award for his work in broadcast news after 9/11 and most recently a Peabody Award. His film credits include Lost Echo, a prize-winning feature short which was the first Persian-American film to be screened at the Asian Cinevision Festival in New York.
Ahmed Zildzic (PhD, University of California at Berkeley, 2012) graduated with MA degree in 2005 from University of Sarajevo where he studied Arabic, Persian and Turkish language and literature at Department for Oriental Philology. In 2007 he joined PhD program at UC Berkeley’s Department for Near Eastern Studies graduating with a thesis on the early Ottoman reception of Ibn ‘Arabi (Friend and Foe: The Early Ottoman Reception of Ibn ‘Arabi). He is currently with the Oriental Institute in Sarajevo as senior research fellow conducting research projects on the Bosnian literary and scholarly heritage in ‘Oriental’ languages, namely Arabic, Persian and Ottoman Turkish. In this academic year 2012/13 he is a visiting faculty at Center for Islamic Studies at Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley. He wrote a number of research papers on various topics relevant to the Persianate culture and literature in the Balkans and Bosnia, the most recent one being on a Persian qasideh by the celebrated Ottoman commentator of Ibn Arabi’s works of Bosnian extraction, ‘Abdullāh Bosnawī: “Kasida šiniyya ‘Abdullāha Bosnawīja na perzijskom jeziku”, Prilozi za orijentalnu filologiju, an annual academic journal issued by the Oriental Institute in Sarajevo, vol. 62, 2012, Sarajevo: 2013, pp. 176-214.