Iran in the 20th Century: Historiography and Political by Touraj Atabaki

By Touraj Atabaki

Political upheaval has marked Iran’s heritage in the course of the 20th century. the rustic has been ravaged via global wars and the brutal Iran-Iraq conflict which expense tens of millions of lives. there has been a Constitutional Revolution in 1905-1909 and coups in 1921 and 1953, whilst Reza Shah and Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi took absolute energy, through another revolution in 1979 while Ayatollah Khomeini proclaimed the Islamic Republic.

Wars, revolutions, coups and the impression of modernism have remodeled energy family members one of the political and armed forces elite and feature resulted in radical political, social, cultural, spiritual and alter all through kingdom and society. those upheavals have formed Iran’s historiography, simply as they've got the country’s background. initially in line with oral and written assets, which underpinned conventional genealogical and dynastic historical past, Iran’s historiography was once remodeled within the early twentieth century with the improvement of a ‘new’ tuition of offering background. right here emphasis shifted from the anecdotal story-telling style to social, political, monetary, cultural and spiritual history-writing.

A new realizing of the country nation and the significance of id and international relatives in defining Iran’s position within the glossy international all served to remodel the point of view of Iranian historiography.

Touraj Atabaki right here brings jointly a number of wealthy contributions from overseas students who conceal the major topics of the historiography of 20th-century Iran, together with constitutional reform and revolution, literature and structure, id, ladies and gender, nationalism, modernism, Orientalism, Marxism and Islamism.

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Extra info for Iran in the 20th Century: Historiography and Political Culture (International Library of Iranian Studies)

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His extensive memoirs, Hayat-i Yahya (Life of Yahya)13 is the first comprehensive narrative of the Constitutional Revolution to be written with the benefit of a post-revolutionary hindsight. 14 Yahya was known first as a member of the Education Council (Anjuman-i Ma`arif ) in the Muzaffari period (1896–1906), and then as founder of the Sadat school for girls. Later, as a key patron of a secret society (anjuman), he contributed to the shaping of the Constitutional movement. The Tehran anjumans under his control were largely manned by members of the guilds and middle rank of the bazaar who seemingly shared his Babi sympathies.

28 They were, in effect, responses to the conservative British press, especially to David Fraser, the London Times’ correspondent in Iran. 29 In compiling his account, Browne had relied partially on his friends among the Iranian Constitutionalists (as well as his old Babi friends), who provided reports 38 MEMORY AND AMNESIA IN THE HISTORIOGRAPHY OF THE CONSTITUTIONAL REVOLUTION directly or through his former students at the British Legation in Tehran. 1). It is indeed likely that Browne was the first to coin the term ‘Constitutional Revolution’ as the English equivalent to the Persian Inqilab-i Mashruta.

Along with the bureaucratic ‘simple prose’ movement that addressed an enlarged critical reading public, there was a nascent nationalist attempt to purify the Persian language from Arabic words and concepts. 87 Directly or indirectly, these authors were informed by Dasatir’s exemplary prose. While Persian purism found a nationalist expression in Iran, as a literary movement it was not limited to Iranian writers. 88 The movement for the simplification and purification of the Persian language coincided with the movement for the simplification of Ottoman Turkish.

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