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The Peculiar Lives of Texts in Translation: Common Challenges in Medieval Studies across Cultural and Disciplinary Boundaries

To engage directly with the challenges brought by the global scope of Medieval Studies, IU’s Medieval Studies Institute brought together scholars whose work spanned the Eurasian continent to discuss their common challenges as well as their common grounds for cross-cultural and cross-disciplinary collaboration.

Panelists included Asma Afsaruddin (Department of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures), Christopher Atwood (Department of Central Eurasian Studies), Christopher Beckwith (Department of Central Eurasian Studies), Manling Luo (Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures), and John Walbridge (Department of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures). The panel was moderated by Rosemary McGerr, Director of the Medieval Studies Institute and Professor in the Department of Comparative Literature.

Navruz Student Association Meeting

Friday, February 8, 2013 - 6:30pm
It's almost spring, and you know what that means! Time for Navruz (Norooz, Nevruz, etc.), the Central Asian/Persian/Kurdish new year festival is upon us once again. Continuing an IU tradition, Navruz Student Association will be holding a concert and dinner to celebrate, and we need performers!

Geographical Writing in Nineteenth Century Iran: A Source for the Social and Economic History of Provincial Communities

Thursday, February 21, 2013 - 4:30pm

Historians have yet to produce a detailed social and economic history of Qajar Iran (1795-1925). A major obstacle to this is the common conception that proper source materials simply do not exist to tackle such a monumental project. This presentation will address some of the major historiographical issues related to the field of Qajar provincial social and economic history and stress the utility of Persian geographical literature as a source of great significance that has yet to be systematically explored by scholars.

Thirteenth Annual CESS Conference

Thursday, October 18, 2012 - 12:00pm to Sunday, October 21, 2012 - 12:00pm

The Thirteenth Annual Conference of the Central Eurasian Studies Society (CESS) will be held at Indiana University, hosted by the Sinor Research Institute for Inner Asian Studies and the Inner Asian and Uralic National Resource Center. The program will feature panel and paper topics relating to all aspects of humanities and social science scholarship on Central Eurasia, a geographic domain which extends from the Black Sea and Iranian Plateau to Mongolia and Siberia, including the Caucasus, Crimea, Middle Volga, Afghanistan, Tibet, Xinjiang, and Central and Inner Asia.

Food, Purity, and Pollution: Zoroastrian Views on the Eating Habits of Others

Wednesday, March 28, 2012 - 6:00pm to 7:00pm

Join us as Dr. Touraj Daryaee discusses the use of food as a mode of differentiation and identification according to Zoroastrian Middle Persian and Persian texts of the late antique and early Medieval period. In these texts, the list of foods consumed by Arab Muslims and the Indians are juxtaposed with that of the Iranian diet, and each group is given anthropological treatment. The article contends that the Zoroastrian dietary law, based on the Middle Persian texts, provides a mode of purity and impurity vis-a-vis others. Finally, Dr.


Iran, formerly known as Persia, is a region with long history of cultural, administrative and artistic achievements. The first unified Persian state was founded by Cyrus the Great, founder of the Achaemenid Empire. Modern-day Iran was the heartland of a serious of successive, powerful Persian empires for much of the Classical period. In the seventh century, the region was conquered by the Islamic Caliphate and converted to Islam. Persian culture, learning and administration greatly influenced the many rulers and dynasties in the region.


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