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October 2017

Shahnameh and its Oral Traditions

October 5 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm

Jalil Doostkhah is an eminent scholar of Iranian literature and culture, with an abiding interest in the country’s grand epic, Shahnameh. He has published extensively on different aspects of the country’s ancient culture and religion as well as on the textual history and meaning of Shahnameh. He will be discussing his research on some of the oral sources of Shahnameh as well as the role of the rich tradition of ritualized recitation of the text, or Naggali, in its preservation…

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Anti-Clericalism in Medieval Persian Poetry

October 19 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm

Dr. Leonard Lewisohn is Senior Lecturer in Persian and Iran Heritage Foundation Fellow at the Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies of the University of Exeter where he teaches Islamic Studies, Sufism, history of Iran, as well as courses on Persian texts and Persian poetry in translation. He specializes in translation of Persian Sufi poetic and prose texts. He has authored many books including Beyond Faith and Infidelity: The Sufi Poetry and Teachings of Mahmud Shabistari (London: Curzon Press 1995), and…

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Tracy K. Smith Reading, part of the Lane Lecture Series

October 30 8:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Photo by Rachel Eliza Griffiths Part of the Lane Lecture Series Tracy K. Smith is the author of the critically acclaimed memoir Ordinary Light (Knopf, 2015) and three books of poetry. Her collection Life on Mars won the 2012 Pulitzer Prize and was selected as a New York Times Notable Book. Duende won the 2006 James Laughlin Award from the Academy of American Poets and an Essence Literary Award. The Body’s Question was the winner of the 2002 Cave Canem Poetry Prize. Smith was the recipient of a Rona Jaffe…

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December 2017

A Bridge Taken for a Wall, a Wall Taken for a Bridge: On Persian Art, Poetry, and Translation

December 7 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm

Jahan Ramazani is University Professor and Edgar F. Shannon Professor of English at the University of Virginia. He is currently writing a book on poetry in a global age. This talk on poetry, art, and East-West translation ranges from ancient Iran to medieval Byzantium and the Abbasid era to modern Iran and Ireland. The lecture is in three parts. The first looks at the Persian artistic influences via Byzantium on a modern Irish poet that have passed largely unrecognized (a bridge…

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