October 5th: Prof. Andrew Hicks

Salaam dustaan,

This week, the University of Chicago’s Persian Circle are fortunate to host Andrew Hicks (Associate Professor of Music and Medieval Studies, Cornell University ) for a talk entitled:

“Musical agency in Ghaznavid court poetry” [this talk in English]

Please join us this Thursday 5th October for what promises to be a fascinating talk!

Pick Hall 218
5828 S. University Ave
Chicago, IL 60540

Professor Hicks’ research focuses on the intellectual history of early musical thought from a cross-disciplinary perspective that embraces philosophical, cosmological, scientific and grammatical discourse in Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, and spans the linguistic and cultural spheres of Latin, Greek, Persian, and Arabic. http://music.cornell.edu/andrew-hicks

Talk abstract: The divan of Farrukhī Sīstānī (d. 1037) teems with evocations of a lively Ghaznavid minstrel culture, a culture Farrukhī knew first-hand, as he was not only a court poet but was also, according to the Chahār maqāla, a “dexterous performer on the harp.” Though numerous studies document and detail the public, courtly persona of the Persian minstrel,the divan-e Farrukhī presents a much less studied aspect of Ghaznavid minstrelsy, namely, the minstrel’s private, erotic persona as the “moon-faced,” “silken-breasted” beloved; auditory beauty and visual beauty become semantically entwined and at times interchangeable. This study takes as its point of departure the lyric nasib to several of Farrukhī’s qasidas that describe intimate and manifestly erotic encounters between Farrukhī, the poet, and an (always unnamed) Turkish beloved, the minstrel. In recounting such erotic encounters, Farrukhī’s poetry affords us a glimpse into the formative stages of a still-living symbol that was to become, in later Persian poetry, “stock” poetic imagery: the beloved as “Turk”. A careful reading of Farrukhī’s poetry, with occasional glances to Manūchihrī and ‘Unṣurī, allows us to chart with more precision the emergence of this symbolic minstrel persona, which was rooted in the historical realities of the Ghaznavid court but came to resonate more broadly with the imagery of music and musical performance unique to the Persian poetic tradition.

Prof. Hicks will be giving a second talk on Friday 6th October @3:30pm, in the Fulton Recital Hall, entitled:

“Listening Vicariously: music and metaphor in medieval Persion Sufism”

Full details of Friday’s talk can be found here: https://music.uchicago.edu/page/music-colloquium-series

Be omid-e didar,

Introduction to a New Annotated English Translation of چرند و پرند علی اکبر دہخدا

[If you missed John Perry’s talk, you can find a copy of it here]

Please join Persian Circle this Tuesday for a talk with Prof. John Perry, introducing his new translation of Dehkhoda’s Charand-o Parand with Janet Afary, Revolutionary Satire from Iran, 1907-1909: Yale UP, 2016. This talk will given in English and Persian.

Tuesday, May 17, 4:30 pm
Farouk Mustafa Seminar Room (Pick Hall #218)
5828 S. University Ave.
Chicago, IL 60637

Screening of “Silky Eloquence” with Filmmaker Hossein Khandan

Screening of “Silky Eloquence” followed by Q & A
نمایش فیلم ‘حریر کلام’ به همراه پرسش و پاسخ با کارگردان فیلم
With more than 38 years experience, Hossein Khandan, an Iranian-American filmmaker and photographer, will be in person to screen his award winning film “Silky Eloquence,” along with other short films. Subsequently, he will be available for discussion about his experience as a Persian artist in China.
Tuesday, April 19, 4:30 pm
Farouk Mustafa Seminar Room (Pick Hall #218)
5828 S. University Ave.
Chicago, IL 60637 

Saeed Ghahremani: Modern Ghazal Testing Untrodden Grounds

If you missed Saeed’s Talk, you can listen (or download) it here.

Please join us on Tuesday, February 9th, for a Persian Circle talk with Dr. Saeed Ghahremani (NELC, University of Chicago). This talk will be in Persian, and all are invited to attend:

Modern Ghazal Testing Untrodden Grounds / راهی که “غزل نو” پیموده است
Saeed Ghahremani / سعید قهرمانی

Tuesday, February 9, 4:30 pm
Farouk Mustafa Memorial Seminar Room (Pick 218)
5828 S. University Ave.
Chicago, IL 60637

Jan 19: “Laughter in the Time of Coup d’État: The Less-Known Iraj Pezeshkzād” with Saeed Ghahremani

خنده در سالهای کودتا:
 چهرۀ کمتر آشنای ایرج پزشکزاد
Laughter in the Time of Coup d’État:
The Less-Known Iraj Pezeshkzād
Tuesday, January 19th, 4:30pm
Farouk Mustafa Memorial Seminar Room (Pick 218)
5828 S. University Ave.
Chicago, IL 60637

Dec 1: Attar, the Unhealed Healer, with Sohila Saremi

Please join us on Dec. 1st for a talk (in Persian) with special guest Sohila Saremi of Saddleback University. A scholar or Persian language and literature, in addition to many other publications she has written Mystical Terms and Prominent Concepts in ʿAṭṭâr’s Speech (in Persian), an incredibly useful analytic concordance. Hope to see you all there!

Attar, the Unhealed Healer
عطار، طبیب بیمار

Sohila Saremi, Saddleback University
سهیلا صارمی

Tuesday, December 1st, 430pm
Farouk Mustafa Memorial Lecture Room (Pick 218)
5828 South University Avenue 
Chicago, IL 60637


Nov. 17: “The Child and the West in Iran: A Look at The Institute for the Intellectual Development of Children and Young Adults (KANOON),” with Niloofar Sarlati

Please join Persian Circle on November 17th at 5:30pm (note the later time!) for a talk by Niloofar Sarlati of the University of Minnesota:

کودک و غرب در ایران: نگاهی به کانون پرورش فکری

The Child and the West in Iran: A Look at The Institute for the Intellectual Development of Children and Young Adults (KANOON)

توجه به کودک و اوقات فراغت او اساسا پدیده ای است مدرن. مخصوصا اگر بپذیریم که قصه گویی و یا داستان های جن و پری، به مشاهده ی والتر بنیامین و رونالد جی  تولکین، هرگز به لحاظ تاریخی صرفا معطوف کودکان نبوده است. در ایران هم  نخستین توجه جدی به کودک در عرصه ی نشر به دوره ی مدرن و پیدایش نخستین نشریه‌های کودکان به دوران مشروطه بازمی‌گردد. از آنجا که مدرنیت را نمی توان در ایران جدا از غرب فهمید در این مقاله من به رابطه ی میان توجه به کودک در ایران و ارتباط این توجه با غرب می پردازم اما تنها از خلال نگاه به کانون پرورش فکری، نهادی که از سه دهه پیش از انقلاب با کسب جوایز بین الممللی بسیار بلند ترین صدا را در عرصه ی پرورش کودک در ایران داشته است.

Children literature and attention to children’s free time in publication is known to be a modern phenomena in the West. This is especially true if we recognize Walter Benjamin and J.R.R. Tolkien’s observation that fairytales, fairy stories, and storytelling were historically never really produced for children exclusively. Same can be said about Iran in regard to the attention to children in the publication industry. It is not until the Constitutional Movement that along with the shift of attention to political modernity, the first children magazine also published in Iran. This talk attends to this relationship between children and the West in Iran through looking at The Institute for the Intellectual Development of Children and Young Adults, an institute which is internationally most recognized as dedicated to the “development of children” in Iran and which was established three decades before the Revolution of 1979.

November 17th, 5:30 pm
Farouk Mustafa Memorial Lecture Room (Pick 218)
5828 South University Avenue 
Chicago, IL 60637

Oct 27: “Chicago Persian School: Case Study of a Journey,” with Dr. Negar Mansourian-Hadavi

[If you missed this talk, you can listen to it in the above player or download it here]

Please join us on for a Persian Circle talk on Tuesday, October 27 by Dr. Negar Mansourian-Hadavi, director of the Chicago Persian School:

مدرسه فارسی شیکاگو: مطالعه‌ی یک ماجرا
Chicago Persian School: Case Study of a Journey

نگار منصوریان-هادوی
Dr. Negar Mansourian-Hadavi

Tuesday, October 27th, 4:30 pm
Farouk Mustafa Memorial Lecture Room (Pick 218)
5828 South University Avenue
Chicago, IL 60637


Oct. 20: “Teaching Persian as a Second Language,” Hossein Samei

[For those of you who couldn’t join us for Dr. Samei’s talk, a recording can be found here. If you have trouble with the embedded media player, try downloading the file by right-clicking and selecting “save as.”]
Please join us for a special Persian Circle on pedagogy and teaching Persian as a second language, with lexicographer and Persian lecturer Hossein Samei of Emory! Beh omid-e didaar!
Hossein Samei
حسین سامعی
Teaching Persian as a Second Language
آموزش فارسی به عنوان زبان دوم
Tuesday, Oct. 20th, 4:30 pm
Farouk Mustafa Memorial Seminar Room (Pick 218)
1116 E 59th St, Chicago, IL 60637



Oct. 13: “Contradiction in Hafiz’s Poetry,” Mehdi Harandi

[For those of you who couldn’t make Mehdi Harandi’s talk, a recording can be found at the bottom of this post]

Join us October 13th at 4:30 pm in the Farouk Mustafa lecture room (Pick 218) for a talk in Persian by Mehdi Harandi:

تناقض در شعر حافظ
شعر حافظ، آنجا که جهان‌بینی و دیدگاه فکری او‌ را نشان می‌‌دهد، گاه، ضدّ و نقیض است.  بسیاری از حافظ پژوهان یا، با نادیده گرفتن این تضادها، او‌ را وابسته به یک مکتب فکری خاص دانسته‌اند، و یا سعی‌ کرده‌اند تا توجیهی برای این تضادها بیابند.  در این گفتار، پس از یک بررسی کوتاه از این نظریه‌ها، سعی‌ خواهیم کرد تا نشان دهیم که تضاد در شعر حافظ نتیجه‌ی نابسامانی یا دگرگونی فکری او‌ نیست، بلکه حاصل شعور و نبوغ هنری اوست که از شعرش آینه‌ای می‌‌سازد برای تصویرهای متفاوت، نه‌ یک قاب برای تصویری خاص

Contradiction in Hafiz’s Poetry

Hafez’s poetry, when he expresses his world views and his philosophy of life, at times includes contradictions.  Many literary studies of Hafez’s poetry have either ignored such contradictions (thus, associating him with a specific school of thought), or tried to explain them away.  In this talk, after a brief review of some of these studies, we will try to show that what seems to be contradiction in Hafez’s poetry is indeed due to his artistic genius, by which he has created a mirror to reflect many views on an ideological issue, rather than framing a particular school of thought on that issue.

[If the embedded payer doesn’t work for you, you can download the file by right-clicking the following link and selecting “save as”: Mehdi Harandi. Tanaqoz dar sher-e Hafez]