Publication: Nina Ansary, Women of Allah

Iranian historian, author and women’s rights activist, Dr. Nina Ansary, has recently released her much-anticipated book, Jewels of Allah. In it Dr. Ansary sets out to dismantle the popular narratives and perceptions surrounding the women of her home country by tracing the origins, growth and successes of the Iran’s flourishing feminist movement and weaving into her historical writing the personal stories of  strong-willed Iranian women, who have proven to be relentless in their pursuit of gender equality.


100% of all proceeds from the sale of the book will go to various charitable organizations and institutions, with the primary recipient being the OMID Foundation, a 501(c)(3) registered charity that has been empowering disadvantaged young women in Iran for over 10 years. 

Information regarding Dr. Ansary’s international book tour can be found by subscribing to her mailing list here

Event: UK Iranian Film Festival (London)

London Iranian Film Festival is the only annual festival to present Iranian cinema in the UK.  The festival aims to introduce the international community to the best of Iranian cinema.


  • 3 Movies, 1 Ticket (Melbourne, I’m Not Angry, 360 Degrees)

Date: Saturday 1st August
Time: 14:00- 21:00
Venue: Greenwood Theatre, King’s Venues, London, 55 Weston Street, London

Tickets are £18 if purchased in advance or £25 on the door (for all three screenings) and can be purchased at:–tickets-17478326144

Tickets for individual screenings are also available.

  • Summer Celebration (Darya Dadvar performance and Rokh Divaneh screening)

Date: Sunday 9th August
Venue: Opera Holland Park
Time: Doors open: 17.00
Darya Dadvar Live Performance: 17.30 – 18.45
Screening of Rokh Divaneh (Crazy Castle): 20.00 

Tickets are £41.50 if purchased before 1 August or £50 on the door:

The official trailer of Rokh Divaneh, winner of the Best Film and the Best Director awards at the 33rd Fajr Film Festival (2015):

For more information contact:
+(44) 7494005151

Upcoming Lecture: Jan Just Witkam, “Why did they not print their books?”

Event: The Islamic Manuscript Association Lecture Series – ‘Why did they not print their books? Stories about the reasons why printing was introduced so late in the Muslim world.’

The Islamic Manuscript Association, in cooperation with the Thesaurus Islamicus Foundation and Stanford University Libraries is pleased to announce the next in its series of occasional lectures: ‘Why did they not print their books? Stories about the reasons why printing was introduced so late in the Muslim world’, presented by Professor Jan Just Witkam, professor emeritus of codicology and palaeography of the Islamic world at the University of Leiden and editor-in-chief of The Islamic Manuscript Association’s Journal of Islamic Manuscripts.

The first time that a book in Arabic script was printed by Muslims in an Islamic country was in the year 1727, more than two-and-a-half century after the first Western book that was printed with movable type. Historians and others have asked why this could happen, as if history can provide answers. In their research they have come up with explanations that tell more about themselves than about the subject itself. These stories, and the questions which they try to answer, are the subject of the lecture. The stories about the transition period between writing and printing books rather illustrate a fascinating stage in Western thinking about Muslim culture.

Date: Wednesday 5 August 2015, 18.30 (Registration required; Free of charge)

Venue: Bender Room, 5th Floor Bing Wing, Green Library, Stanford, California,

Please note: the lecture is limited to 70 persons and places will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis. The event is free of charge.

For more information, and to register, please see the Association’s website at:

The Islamic Manuscript Association is an international non-profit organisation dedicated to protecting Islamic manuscript collections and supporting those who work with them. It was formed in response to the urgent need to address the poor preservation and inaccessibility of many Islamic manuscript collections around the world. The Association’s lecture series publicises work with Islamic manuscripts, bringing expert knowledge and insights to new audiences beyond the Association’s core membership. If your institution is interested in collaborating with the Association to present a particular lecture or to suggest a speaker, please write to us at .

Opening: Postdoctoral Researcher at University of Chester

Applications are invited for the position of Postdoctoral Researcher in Islamic Studies in the Department of Theology and Religious Studies at the University of Chester. The Department is currently expanding in the area of Islamic Studies and has appointed Oliver Scharbrodt as first Professor of Islamic Studies at the University of Chester with the strategic aim to turn the Department and its new Chester Centre for Islamic Studies (CCIS) into one of the prime centres for the academic study of Islam in the UK.

The post provides an exciting opportunity to develop Islamic Studies at the University by contributing to both research and teaching. The post-doctoral researcher will be part of a research project that examines transnational religio-political networks in contemporary Twelver Shiism operating between Iraq, Iran and Britain. Professor Oliver Scharbrodt is the principal investigator of the project which is funded the Gerda Henkel Foundation, a private foundation that supports research across the Humanities and Social Sciences. The post-doctoral researcher will also contribute to undergraduate and postgraduate teaching in the Department.

Successful applicants will have a PhD in Religious Studies or other related discipline in the areas of Shia Islam, modern Islam, Muslims in Europe and/or gender and Islam. They must be able to conduct research in Arabic. Proficiency in Persian and experience of ethnographic research are desirable.

Informal enquiries should be directed to:

Professor Oliver Scharbrodt,
Department of Theology and Religious Studies,
University of Chester,
Parkgate Road,
Chester CH1 4BJ,
Tel: 01244 511000,

Candidates can apply through our website at  and applications should be made via our Online Recruitment Website quoting reference number HR14429.

Closing Date: 6 August 2015.

Call for Submissions: IMC, Leeds

CALL FOR PAPERS *Celebrating Excess? Cross-Cultural Perspectives on Court, Consumption and Authority* IMC, Leeds, 4-7 July 2016

Who we are:
The International Medieval Congress, an annual conference running continuously since 1994, is the biggest humanities event in Europe, attracting over 2000 delegates in 2014. It provides a unique forum for sharing and comparing approaches across a wealth of disciplines. The 2016 theme is ‘Food, Feast & Famine.’ Taking the feast as a starting point, these panels interrogate medieval writers’ assessments of rulership and authority via the discussion of consumption and ostentation in court settings.

By no means restricted to the luxury register of feast and plenty, we invite explorations of the tensions between distributive and extractive functions in court, and their relation to ideal, normative and transgressive behaviour in monarchs, factions, officials, rich and poor. This will illuminate contemporary characterisations of the court as a setting for the playing out of rule and authority as participation in, and focus of, economic flows, and the interrelation of these with the performance of authority and rulers’, retinues’, bureaucracies’ and populations’ places in the divine and human order.

We welcome contributions on courts across methodologies and disciplines, and across and beyond Europe’s fuzzy bounds – the panels build on the growing presence at Leeds of scholars working on geographical and cultural contexts across Eurasia to offer further opportunities for fruitful exchange and cross-cultural comparison.

Papers will be restricted to 15 minutes (we are inviting respondents to draw out common threads) and abstracts should be around 100 words, and submitted by Monday 17th August 2015.

For contributions or questions, please contact:
Sami Kalliosaari, University of Leeds,

Geoff Humble, University of Birmingham,

The IMC call for papers can be accessed here:

Call for Submissions: Ethnographic Film and Media Program of the Middle East and Central Eurasia

The Second Ethnographic Film and Media Program of the Middle East and Central Eurasia of EASA (European Association of Social Anthropologists), The Department of Sociology, University of Nantes, Nantes, France, November 2015

We are pleased to announce the second Ethnographic Film and Media Program of the Middle East and Central Eurasia, which will be held annually in conjunction with the Anthropology of the Middle East and Central Eurasia Network of the European Association of Social Anthropologists (EASA).

The goal of our program is to promote original ethnographic films and visual media, not only in the area of anthropology, but also in sociology, folklore, religion, material culture and related topics. Our program encompasses all areas of the contemporary Middle East and Central Eurasia (the Russian Federation, the Caucasus, Central Asia, China), including topics on minority groups and religious themes.

Our second program will be held with the collaboration of the Department of Sociology of the University of Nantes and Institut du Pluralisme Religieux et de l’Athéisme – IPRA/MSHG (Nantes) during November 2015 (University of Nantes, Nantes, France). We invite and encourage all students, anthropologists, sociologists, documentary filmmakers and media artists to participate in our program by submitting ethnographic videos, films (including online and cell phone styles, short and feature-length films) as well as interactive media (websites, hyperlinked documents, etc.).


Films and other materials submitted for the program should be submitted online or as DVD preview copies, accompanied by a synopsis, a 10-line description and technical data, no later than 10th September 2015.

Delivery and return policies: 

  • All entries submitted must have received their first public screening on or after 1 January 2015.
  • All participants must cover all costs related to the delivery of preview and screening copies. We will not return the preview and screening copies.

All entries should be sent to: 

Dr. P. Khosronejad                                                                                                                       Institut du Pluralisme Religieux et de l’Athéisme – IPRA
Maison des Sciences de l’Homme Ange-Guépin
5 allée Jacques Berque
BP 12105
44021 Nantes cedex 1, France


Call for Submissions: MESA Graduate Student Paper Prize


The Middle East Studies Association invites submissions of graduate student research papers on any aspect of post 600 CE Middle East studies for the 2015 Graduate Student Paper Prize. The author of the winning paper will be presented with a certificate and $250 cash award at the Awards Ceremony at MESA’s annual meeting. In addition, the paper can be submitted for publication in the Review of Middle East Studies (RoMES).

Papers will be reviewed using a blind process so the author’s name should NOT be included on the title page, footer, or header. Papers will be evaluated according to originality of research and conceptualization (or interpretation), cogency of argument, and clarity of writing.

The Student Paper Prize winner will be announced at the Awards Ceremony at MESA’s annual meeting. Winners will receive a certificate and $250 cash award.

2015 Submission rules:

  • Complete the submission form and provide proof of graduate student status by asking a faculty member to send in a statement (since it is a blind review it can be sent via email) verifying that the paper was written as a graduate student and was produced between June 30, 2014 and June 30, 2015.
  • The Author’s name must not appear anywhere on the paper
  • The paper must not exceed 7500 words (excluding bibliography/endnotes).
  • The paper must never have been submitted for publication (nor will be throughout the duration of the competition).

The paper needs to use the following format:

  • 8 ½ x 11 paper
  • One-sided
  • Standard font (such as Arial or Times Roman)
  • Double-spaced
  • 1.25” margins
  • Black and white
  • IJMES standards for endnotes

Deadline: August 31, 2015

Please address questions or requests for additional information to:

Rose Veneklasen
Awards Coordinator
Middle East Studies Association
The University of Arizona
1219 N Santa Rita Ave
Tucson AZ 85721
Tel: 520/621-5850