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Reza Ali Khazeni Memorial Lecture
in Iranian Studies

About the Lecture

Between 1995-2016, the Reza Ali Khazeni Memorial Foundation, the College of Humanities and the Middle East Studies Program at University of Utah were the co-sponsors of the Reza Ali Khazeni Memorial Lectures in Iranian Studies. The goal of the lecture series was to introduce the community to Iran’s rich civilization and heritage and to the various facets of Persian culture and civilization. Leading scholars of Iranian studies were invited to deliver a lecture at the University of Utah on a subject of their expertise within the domain of Persian culture. The topics ranged from history to religion and mysticism, from philosophy to art and architecture, from literature to music, and from the study of Iranian society to political and social thought. The speakers were selected to ensure that the many different facets of Persian culture and history were covered. All lectures were free and open to the public.
The University of Utah remains extremely grateful to the Reza Ali Khazeni Memorial Foundation for the opportunity to collaborate on such important topics during the course of those lectures.
The Reza Ali Khazeni Memorial Foundation was established in the memory of Reza Ali Khazeni, who was born in Tehran, Iran on June 7, 1968 and died in Salt Lake City, Utah on June 17, 1990. Reza Ali was deeply interested in nature and the preservation of the environment, and was concerned with social injustice and care of the elderly, homeless and the oppressed. He enjoyed traveling and learning about different cultures. Reza Ali appreciated the arts and the humanities and was particularly intrigued by philosophy, in which he earned a B.A. degree, cum laude, from Boston University. He was also interested in the history, culture and civilization of the country of his birth. The goal of the Foundation is to assist individuals and organizations through grants, scholarships, and awards in the study, experience, and public discourse of these issues. The lecture series was a partial realization of this goal.

Ambassador John Limbert

"U.S.-Iranian Relations: Enemies Forever?"
September 9th, 2016

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Ali Banuazizi

“Interpreting the Iranian Revolution Three and a Half Decades Later”
September 13, 2013


Nader Ardalan

“Luminous Perceptions: Nature, Culture and Spirituality in Persian Architecture”
September 10, 2010

Vali Nasr

“Shia-Sunni Conflict: Politics of Change in the Middle East” September 7, 2007

Ahmad Karimi-Hakkak

“The Mystical Masternarrative in Persian Literature”
September 10, 2004

David Stronach

“Cyrus and Darius: New Light on the First Royal Architects of Achaemenid Iran”
September 14, 2001

Robert Hillenbrand

“The Friday Mosque of Isfahan: Key to Islamic Architecture of Iran”
September 11, 1998

Annmarie Schimmel

“Death as the Gateway to Life in the Eyes of the Sufis”
May 9, 1997

Farzaneh Milani

"A Revolution within Two Revolutions: Women and Literature in Contemporary Iran"
September 11, 2015

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Nacim Pak-Shiraz

“Imagining the Diaspora in Iranian Cinema: The ‘Farangi’ in Comedies”
September 7, 2012


Shireen Mahdavi

“A historical Overview of the Position of Women in Iran”
September 11, 2009


Jean During

“Persian music today: Challenges and Perspectives”
September 9, 2006

Roy Parviz Mottahedeh

“The Strange and Marvelous in Persian Art and Literature” September 19, 2003

William C. Chittick

“The Evolution Psychology of Jalal al-din Rumi”
September 8, 2000

Richard N. Frye

“Continuities in the History of Iran”
May 1, 1998

Peter Chelkowski

“Harmony of Sound, Form and Color in Verse: Khamseh of Nezami”
October 4, 1996

Farhad Daftary

"Shi'i Islam and Its Manifestations in Iran"
September 19, 2014

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Homa Katouzian

"Persia in Perspective"
September 9, 2011


Martin Schwartz

“The World of Zarathushtra”
September 12, 2008

Ehsan Yarshater

“The Persian Phase of the Islamic Civilization”
September 9, 2005

C. Edmund Bosworth

“Iran and Afghanistan: Interaction Through the Ages”
September 13, 2002

Shaul Bakhash

“Autocrats & Democrates: Authority, the State and Civil Society in Iran”  September 17, 1999

Oleg Grabar

“The Subject-Matter of Persian Painting”
October 10, 1997

Seyyed Hossein Nasr

“Notes on the Definition of Persian Culture”
October 6, 1995

Last Updated: 11/3/21