Conference: Private lives and public spaces in modern Iran
Organized by the Iran Heritage Foundation, the
Oriental Institute (University of Oxford), the Roshan Cultural Heritage
Institute and the Persian Cultural Foundation in association with St. Antony's
College and Wadham College (University of Oxford).
Date: 7 -10 July 2005
at St. Antony's College, The Nissan Lecture Theatre,
62 Woodstock Road,
Tavakoli-Targhi, University of Toronto.
provides a rare opportunity for the articulation of new research agendas for the
reconceptualization of modern Iranian history (from the mid 19th century to the
present day) by addressing such themes as the historization of personhood, the
family, and modes of intimacy, and friendship.
the overwhelming significance of the Islamic Revolution and the political
questions that it posed, historians of modern Iran have
focused primarily on political history and have rarely explored the
(trans)formations of private and public spheres, the changing spaces that have
directly shaped the experience of everyday life. Intimacy, sexuality, and
sociability-burgeoning fields of historical studies--have similarly remained
unexplored by Iranian historians. Despite considerable feminist interest in
Modern Iranian history, many studies have largely abstained from exploring
domestic and private lives in Iran. Fetishizing the veil, they have
rarely inquired about the subjectivity, agency, and personal lives of women.
Similarly, the expanding field of Qajar studies (including the Constitutional
Revolution) continues to reproduce worn-out political grand narratives without
much attention to the important topic of the emergence of new national public
spheres and the reconfiguration of domestic spaces. Similarly, studies of
post-revolutionary Iran rarely explore the
transformation of the private sphere and the emergence on secular and
counter-Islamist modes of sociability and ethos. These changes facilitated the
development of new conceptions of the self, subjectivity, the family, and
national belonging (Iran and Iranianness). As long as the
spaces of everyday experience and their concurrent modes of subjectivity,
intimacy, and sociability are not historicized, Iranian cultural, intellectual,
religious, literary, art, and gender histories continue to remain within the
traditional chronological fold of political history, a continuity that retards
historical inquiry and understanding.
placing the interface of private lives and public spaces at the center of
historical inquiry, this conference prompts the development of new directions in
the writing of Iranian history.
80 GBP on or before 1
July, 100 GBP after 1 July (Students: 40 GBP on or before 1 July, 50 GBP after 1
July). For registration form click on www.iranheritage.org/privatelives/registration.htm.
Iran Heritage Foundation, 5
Stanhope Gate, London W1K 1AH. 44 20 74934766 (tel), 44 20
74999293 (fax), firstname.lastname@example.org.
Two exhibitions will
be on display at St. Antony's College in conjunction with the conference. An
exhibition of photographs by Mamad Mossadegh entitled Portrait of
Iran (for further details see www.iranheritage.org/portraitofiran) and an exhibition
of sculptures by Maryam Salour.
registration, additional details:
registration form, programme details and additional information about the
conference can be found at: www.iranheritage.org/privatelives
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