Mr. Hamid Rahmanian and Dr. Ahmad Sadri: September 13
Prof. Richard Bulliet: October 11

(Additional dates will follow)


Mr. Hamid Rahmanian and Dr. Ahmad Sadri

Thursday September 13, 2012
Present their project of A New Abridged Shahnameh translation with over 400 pages of Illustrations


1. Summary of Presentation of Images By Hamid Rahmanian: SHAHNAMEH: THE EPIC OF THE PERSIAN KINGS is a new illustrated translation that tells the stories of the Shahnameh of Ferdowsi. This new book edition with over 400 pages of new illustrations will be published by Quantuck Lane Press and distributed by W. W. Norton & Co. in March 2013. The illustrations incorporate traditional Persian imagery from the fourteenth to the nineteen centuries. The new translation and adaptation retells the mythological tales from the Shahnameh, aiming to encourage a new generation of readers to discover the treasure of fantastical stories that are presently little-known to the average reader in the West.

2. The New Abridged Translation of Shahnemeh by Ahmad Sadri: This abridged translation is meant to accompany a new, illustrated Shahnameh with the aim of infusing the popular imagination of the 21st Century with the legends of Iran’s national epic. The recurring battles between Iran and Turan provide the backdrop for three sweeping love stories and four, increasingly human-centered tragedies. The character-based abridged narration of the mythic and epic portions of the book aims to attract audiences whose minds are formatted and whose tastes have been formed by the syntax of film and other modern media. Only characters with speaking lines have been named, once introduced, each character is fully fleshed out.



1. Hamid Rahmanian is a filmmaker and graphic artist. He holds a B.F.A. from the University of Tehran in Graphic Design and earned a M.F.A. in Computer Animation in 1997 from Pratt Institute in New York City. He received “The First Place College Award” (a student Emmy) from the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences and was nominated for a Student Academy Award for his animation, THE SEVENTH DAY, among other awards in 1997. His first 35 mm film, a 19-minute short, AN I WITHIN, received Kodak’s "Best Cinematography Award" and “Best American Short” from the LA International Short Film Festival. Mr. Rahmanian then went on to make three documentaries on video: BREAKING BREAD (2000), SIR ALFRED OF CHARLES DE GAULLE AIRPORT (2001) and SHAHRBANOO (2002), all of which have been well received by the media and worldwide audiences. In September 2003, Mr. Rahmanian co-founded and was the president (2003-2007) of ARTEEAST, an organization committed to promoting the arts and cultures of the Middle East in the US and abroad. In 2005 he completed his first feature length narrative film entitled DAY BREAK, which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival and was the recipient of several prestigious awards. He completed the feature-length documentary THE GLASS HOUSE in the fall of 2008 that premiered at IDFA and Sundance Film Festival. It was the winner of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe’s Human Rights Award and Best Documentary from Spain’s Urban TV. He is currently illustrating a new edition of the Ferdowsi’s Shah-nameh.

2. Ahmad Sadri is Professor of Sociology and James P. Gorter Chair of Islamic World Studies at Lake Forest College. His published books include: Max Weber's Sociology of Intellectuals, New York: Oxford University Press, 1992. Selected as one of the "outstanding academic books" of 1993 by Choice Magazine, January 1994.

Reason, Freedom and Democracy in Islam: Essays by Abdolkarim Soroush, New York, Oxford University Press, 2000 (translated from Persian with an introduction by Ahmad Sadri and Mahmoud Sadri).

He has also published numerous articles on various problems of our time, including: "Adjusting to the World According to Salman Rushdie," "Reinventing the Wheel of Democracy: An Exercise in Intercivilizational Exchange," "The Second Death of the Soul of the Salesman," "Business Ethics for Post Liberal Capitalism," "Intercultural Understanding: Leo Strauss and Max Weber."



Prof. Richard Bulliet

Columbia University

Thursday October 11, 2012
'The Rise and Fall of Nishapur'


The talk will discuss why one of the paramount cities of the medieval Muslim world arose in Nishapur in the period 750-­1000, and why it declined in the eleventh century and was then mostly abandoned in the century following. A topographical reconstruction of the city and analysis of its local histories and biographical dictionaries will provide the primary documentation.



RICHARD W. BULLIET is in his thirty-­seventh year as Professor of Middle Eastern History at Columbia University where he also directed the Middle East Institute of the School of International and Public Affairs for twelve years. His most recent scholarly work is Cotton, Climate, and Camels in Early Islamic Iran: A Moment in World History (2009). His earlier books include Hunters, Herders, and Hamburgers (2005); The Case for Islamo-­Christian Civilization (2004); Islam: The View from the Edge (1994); Conversion to Islam in the Medieval Period (1979); The Camel and the Wheel (1975); and The Patricians of Nishapur (1972). He has also written five novels, the most recent of which is The One-­Donkey Solution (2011); and is co-author of a world history textbook, The Earth and Its Peoples (5ed. 2009).



To reach the Faculty House:
Enter the Wien Hall Gate on 116th Street between Amsterdam Avenue and Morningside Drive. Walk past Wien Hall, then turn right to the Faculty House.

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