CNES Podcasts

The Cyrus Cylinder and the Rights Question
"The Cyrus Cylinder and the Rights Question" explores the interplay between historical memory, social rights and contested conceptions of government and constitutionality in the four decades prior to the 1979 Revolution. Offering a corrective to the ideological and linear revolutionary narratives of Pahlavi Iran, this historical inquiry elucidates how a multi-confessional conception of Iran and its constitutionally sanctioned “equality rights” of citizens was conceived at “a moment of danger” during WWII when Iran was invaded by the Allied forces and Reza Shah Pahlavi (r. 1925-1941) was forced to abdicate. Exploring the intersection of an emerging human rights legal discourse and a multi-confessional civilizational narrative, it explains the historical specificity of how the Cyrus Cylinder emerged as a "foundational text" and authorized the inaugural theme of a rights-based civilization in Iran.

From Jinns to Germs: A Genealogy of Pasteurian Islam
The equivalence of jinns with germs enabled early 20th-century Iranian physicians to offer detailed microbiological explanations for questions of “purity and filth” (taharah va nijasat), questions which had been conventionally elucidated by Shi‘i mujtahids in their responsa (tawzih al-masa’il or risalah ‘amaliyah). The refiguration of jinns as microbes consolidated the transformation of the notion of “purity” (taharat) into “hygiene” (nizafat) and that of “impurity” (nijasat) to “dirty”/unhygienic (kisafat). It also contributed to the Pasteurization of Islam and the medicalization of Iran’s modern political imagination.

Palestine and Pedagogy at the University
The third continuation of the one day conference. Moderated by Susan Slymovics, Professor of Anthropology and Near Eastern Languages & Cultures with David Theo Goldberg, "Histories of Relation, Logics of Domination" and David Lloyd, "Lawfare and the Elimination of Histories."

Palestine and Pedagogy at the University
First panel discussion of the one-day conference. Moderated by Asli Bali, Professor UCLA Law School, with Yaman Salahi, "Academic Freedom in Middle East Studies: Comfort, Balance, and Neutrality in the Classroom" and Cheryl Harris, "Pedagogical Challenges of Engaging Palestine."

Saharan Jews and the Fate of French Algeria
A book launch and panel discussion with Sarah Abrevaya Stein, Dept. of History, UCLA Joshua Schreier, Dept. of History, Vassar College Aomar Boum, Dept. of Anthropology, UCLA Panel moderated by Susan Slyomovics, CNES Interim Co-Director

Cosmopolitan Conceptions: IVF Sojourns in Global Dubai
A lecture by Marcia Inhorn, Department of Anthropology, Yale University

Empires, States, and the Middle East in Revolt, 1915-2015
A lecture by Aiyaz Husain, Office of the Historian, U.S Department of State.

Imagining a Modern Iran and the Human Sciences
A lecture in English by Ali Mirsepassi, Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies, Director, Iranian Studies Initiative, New York University

The Arab Uprisings: What Everyone Needs to Know, 2nd edition
A book talk with author James L. Gelvin, Dept. of History, UCLA and Nouri Gana, Dept. of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures & Dept. of Comparative Literature, UCLA

Martin, Malcolm and Muslims
A dialog on the relevance of Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X and the social movements that produced them, and their relevance for today.

The Polarized American Genocide Debate
A talk by Ben Madley, University of California Los Angeles

Teach-In: Out of Nowhere? Some Questions, Answers, and Discussion about ISIS
Commentary by: Ali Hamdan, Department of Geography, UCLA

Persian Women and Other Lies: Story-telling as Historical Retrieval
In English. Part of the UCLA CNES and Program of Iranian Studies Bilingual Lecture Series, with the Support of the Jahangir and Eleanor Amuzegar Chair in Iranian Studies

Adventures in Field-Building: On the History of Middle East Studies in the United States
A lecture by Zachary Lockman, Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies, New York University

Provincial Cosmopolitanism in Late Ottoman Anatolia: An Armenian Shoemaker's Memoir
Nora Cherishian Lessersohn (Harvard University)

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