The Motif of the Cave and the Narrative Tradition of Nāṣir-i Khusraw in Badakhshan
Professor Jo-Ann Gross (Professor of Middle Eastern and Central Eurasian History, The College of New Jersey)
April 11, 2012
Social Sciences Tea Room
This paper draws attention to the important role of oral tradition in Badakhshan through an analysis of the motif of the cave in narratives concerning Nāṣir-i Khusraw’s exile and burial in Yumgān, where Naṣir-i Khuraw spent the last fifteen to twenty years of his life and where his mazār is located. Utilizing a risāla and its various recensions dating from the fifteenth-century to the present, along with stories collected during the course of field research in Badakhshan between 2004-2008, the author will analyze the motif of the cave and the symbolic elements of enclosure related to parallel Islamic, Iranian and Central Asian traditions.
Co-sponsored by CEERES, MEHAT, and the Shi’ism Discussion Group.