October 25, 2016, 5:30pm
Making History in Iran: Education, Nationalism, and Print Culture
Presenter: Dr. Farzin Vejdani (Ryerson University)
Location: Stiteler Hall B26 (208 S. 37th Street)

Dr. Farzin Vejdani will investigate how educational institutions and a growing public-sphere affected the writing of history, and how in turn this writing defined Iranian nationalism. Interactions between the state and a cross-section of Iranian society—scholars, schoolteachers, students, intellectuals, feminists, and poets—were crucial in shaping a new understanding of nation and history. Drawing on previously unexamined primary sources, Vejdani demonstrates how the social locations of historians influenced their interpretations of the past. The relative autonomy of these historians had a direct bearing on whether history upheld the status quo or became an instrument for radical change, and the writing of history became central to debates on social and political reform, the role of women in society, and the criteria for citizenship and nationality.

Dr. Farzin Vejdani received his BA from McGill University (2001) and his PhD from Yale University (2009). He is currently Assistant Professor of History at Ryerson University. His book-length manuscript on Iranian nationalist historiography, Making History in Iran: Education, Nationalism, and Print Culture, was published by Stanford University Press in 2014. Dr. Vejdani is the co-editor of Iran Facing Others: Identity Boundaries in a Historical Perspective (2012). In addition to being the author of two book chapters, he has published various scholarly articles.