Centre for Iranian Studies, SOAS

The Centre for Iranian Studies was launched at SOAS in October 2010 The CIS page on Facebook is updated and maintained by Aki Elborzi: [email protected]

The Centre for Iranian Studies was established in 2010 under the umbrella of the London Middle East Institute (LMEI) at SOAS. The Centre for Iranian Studies draws on the range of academic research and teaching across the disciplines of SOAS, including Languages and Literature, the Study of Religions, History, Economics, Politics, International Relations, Music, Art and Media and Film Studies. The

Operating as usual

Iran: who will be the next supreme leader? 04/06/2024

'Iran: who will be the next supreme leader?' - By Arshin Adib-Moghaddam, Co-Director, SOAS Centre for Iranian Studies

Iran: who will be the next supreme leader? The sudden death of Iran’s president, Ebrahim Raisi, has also sparked much speculation about the identity of the country’s next supreme leader.

Photos from ‎Persian Dutch Network - شبکه ایرانیان هلند‎'s post 15/05/2024
01/05/2024

The SOAS Centre for Iranian Studies is thrilled to announce 'Perspective Unveiled: A tribute to Bahman Maghsoudlou's cinematic legacy', the screening of a captivating series of films from 27 April to 29 June 2024, honouring the remarkable cinematic legacy of Bahman Maghsoudlou.

The Idea of Iran: Qajar Iran on the Cusp of Modernity 15/04/2024

The 18th symposium in the Idea of Iran series at SOAS is dedicated Qajar Iran during the 19th century. The symposium will take place on 11 and 12 May. Register here:

The Idea of Iran: Qajar Iran on the Cusp of Modernity The next edition of the The Idea of Iran Symposium series will take place on 11 and 12 May 2024.

Photos from SOAS University of London's post 20/11/2023
08/11/2023

On 16 October 2023 the SOAS Middle East Institute held an event on 'The Woman Life Freedom movement in Iran: One Year On'. Watch the recording below.

14/08/2023

The Contest for Rule in Eighteenth-Century Iran: The Idea of Iran [Volume 11]

Edited by: Charles Melville
Publisher: I.B.Tauris / Bloomsbury Publishing (2022)

This volume explores the troubled eighteenth century in Iran, between the collapse of the Safavids and the establishment of the new Qajar dynasty in the early decades of the nineteenth century. Despite the striking military successes of Nader Shah, to defeat the Afghan invaders, drive back the Ottomans in the west, and launch campaigns into India and Central Asia, Iran steadily lost territory in the Caucasus and the east, where Persian arms failed to recover lands lost to the Afghans and the Ozbeks.

The chapters of this book cover the continuity and change over this transitional period from a range of perspectives including political history, historiography, art and material culture. They illuminate the changes in Iran's internal conditions, including the legitimising legacy of the Safavid period in court chronicles, the rise of Nader Shah and his influence on the idea of Iran, as well as the art of successive dynasties competing for power and prestige.

The volume also addresses Iran's changed international situation by examining relations with Russia, Britain and India, the result of which would contribute to its re-emergence with a curtailed presence in the new world order of European dominance.

Further information: https://www.bloomsbury.com/uk/contest-for-rule-in-eighteenthcentury-iran-9780755645961/

Publications in the Idea of Iran series: https://www.soas.ac.uk/about/institutes-and-regional-centres/centre-iranian-studies/idea-iran-annual-symposium-and-book

Unveiled: Three Tableaux of Maryam 07/06/2023

Unveiled: Three Tableaux of Maryam - Friday, 16 June 2023 at SOAS!

Unveiled: Three Tableaux of Maryam An evening of Persian musical performance organised by the Cambridge Shahnameh Centre, Southampton Arts Academy and the Centre for Iranian Studies, SOAS.

Luxury and power: Persia to Greece 22/05/2023

The British Museum - Luxury and power: Persia to Greece

04 May - 13 August 2023

Luxury and power: Persia to Greece Drawing on dazzling objects, this exhibition explores how luxury shaped the political landscape of Eurasia in the first millennium BC.

Shahrzad Ghaffari: Journey to Oneness 17/05/2023

Leighton House Exhibition - Shahrzad Ghaffari: Journey to Oneness

22 April - 01 October 2023

Shahrzad Ghaffari: Journey to Oneness From 22 April, discover her most personal artworks and central ideas behind Oneness.

OCTOBER GALLERY: GOLNAZ FATHI: No rain will put out this fire 03/05/2023

October Gallery Exhibition - Golnaz Fathi: No rain will put out this fire

27 April - 10 June 2023

OCTOBER GALLERY: GOLNAZ FATHI: No rain will put out this fire No rain will put out this fire, a new solo exhibition by renowned Iranian artist, presents paintings that are made from bold gestural brushstrokes which are layered with meaning.

20/03/2023

The Centre for Iranian Studies at SOAS wishes you all a very blessed and happy Persian New Year / Norouz 1402

Narguess Farzad
Aki Elborzi

Iranian women are the heroes of their own stories 30/01/2023

'Iranian women are the heroes of their own stories'

By Katy Shahandeh (SOAS)

Iranian women are the heroes of their own stories After having their rights and freedoms sidelined for decades, the women leading Iran's feminist revolution draw on the resistance of their ancestors to envision a new future for themselves and their country, writes Katy Shahandeh.

Professor Annabelle Sreberny: 5 September 1949 - 30 December 2022 06/01/2023

Professor Annabelle Sreberny was one of the founding members and the first Chair of the Centre for Iranian Studies at SOAS. We extend our most heartfelt condolences to her family and friends.

Professor Annabelle Sreberny: 5 September 1949 - 30 December 2022 It is with tremendous sadness that we have learnt of the untimely death of Professor Annabelle Sreberny, Emeritus Professor at the SOAS Centre for Global Media and Communications. Professor Sreberny was one of the founding members and the first Chair of the Centre for Iranian Studies at SOAS.

21/12/2022

Though it feels like the light has been immured for weeks now, and ‘acquainted’ as we have become with these long, dark nights, on shab-e Yaldā, this longest night of the year, we still turn to Hāfez of Shiraz as it is customary, and heed his words not to ‘grow accustomed to and accepting of the Dark’. “Demons reign during the dark solstice”, Hafez tells us, but be that as it may, “seek illumination from the sun”, he urges, “and light will appear”.

صحبت حُکّام ظلمتِ شبِ یلداست | نور ز خورشید جوی بو که برآید

On this year’s shab-e Yaldā, 21st of December/30th of Āzār, when Sagittarius makes way for Capricorn, we wish you and your loved ones, health, happiness, and many brighter days.

Narguess Farzad (Chair, Centre for Iranian Studies, SOAS)
Aki Elborzi (Executive Officer, SOAS Middle East Institute)

(Photo: M Ghasemi | Unsplash)

The Iranian regime is sacrificing a whole new generation 06/12/2022

'The Iranian regime is sacrificing a whole generation of young people'

By Katy Shahandeh (SOAS)

The Iranian regime is sacrificing a whole new generation Young people are at the forefront of the protests in Iran, and they show no signs of stopping despite the regime’s remorseless killing of young people, writes Katy Shahandeh.

Rebel, Rebel: Iranian women's resistance across generations 28/11/2022

'Rebel, Rebel: An ode to Iranian women's spirit of resistance across generations'

By Katy Shahandeh (SOAS)

Rebel, Rebel: Iranian women's resistance across generations An exhibit by Iranian artist Soheila Sokhanvari at the Barbican invites viewers into the world and history of Iran's feminist movement and the rebellious predecessors who paved the way for the current revolutionary moment, writes Katy Shahandeh.

Photos from Hali Publications's post 23/11/2022

An exhibition in Berlin by SOAS alumna, Anahita Sadighi.

Iranian women refuse to be the symbol of a repressive state 14/10/2022

'Women, life, freedom: Resisting gendered state control in Iran'

By Katy Shahandeh (SOAS)

Iranian women refuse to be the symbol of a repressive state Despite the long history of state control over women’s bodies and political dissent in Iran, Katy Shahandeh explains that the very young and diverse makeup of the protests is a sign of hope.

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