Hezser, Catherine. 2014. Review of Shai Secunda: The Iranian Talmud. Reading the Bavli in its Sasanian context. Theologische Literaturzeitung 139(7/8). 867–869.
Catherine Hezser, SOAS, has reviewed Shai Secunda’s excellent The Iranian Talmud. The last paragraph of the review says it all:
This relatively short (the body of text has 146 pages only) but excellent and methodologically careful discussion sums up previous approaches to studying the Bavli contextually and constitutes the basis of all future comparative studies. The book will interest not only Talmudists and historians of ancient Judaism but also scholars of Iranian history and Zoroastrian religion and scholars and students of early Christianity.
Elizabeth Urban has reviewed Sarah Bowen Savant’s very important The New Muslims of Post-Conquest Iran: Tradition, Memory, and Conversion for Marginalia:
However, The New Muslims of Post-Conquest Iran will prove fascinating to anyone interested in identity narratives and how authors shape the past in the service of the present. Savant builds a bridge between the history of Persia and the memory of Persia, and atop this bridge we can clearly witness the inherent tension in any identity between the old and the new.
2. The Sasanian Empire and religious authority: The case of Zoroastrianism
As one of the major political and economic powers in the region, the Sasanian Empire (224–651 CE) elevated Zoroastrianism to the dominant religious and cultural force within its polity, bringing to the foreground the question of the interaction between religion and sovereignty in the Sasanian era. By providing an historical overview this lecture highlights the dynamics between political and religious authority during the Sasanian era.
Speaker: Arash Zeini Where: University of St Andrews, School of Classics, Swallowgate, S11. When: 07 May 2014, 17:30
Lack of direct evidence on the functioning of factor markets in Sasanian/Late Antique Iraq makes it difficult to present a clear picture of the production side of economy during this period. However, relying on the Talmudic evidence, as well as what is men-tioned in the Mādayān ī Hezār Dādestān (MHD), this article aims to provide an idea of factor markets during the Sasanian period, as well as demonstrating the areas where further evidence and research could render better results and allow us to understand the economy of this region in more depth.
A workshop taking place on 21–22 February 2014 at King’s College London.
Visit the workshop website. The programme is available here.
The workshop ‘Patterns of Argumentation in Late Antique and Early Islamic Interreligious Debates’ brings together a group of experts on late antique and early Islamic religious texts to reflect on this type of literature. We will discuss how religious ideas in the Eastern Mediterranean world (6th-8th c. CE) were shaped by the challenges of rival religious groups, and especially what patterns of argumentation were employed within the genre of religious disputation in order to formulate answers to critical questions from inside and outside the community.
Pourshariati, Parvaneh. 2013. Introduction: Further engaging the paradigm of Late Antiquity. Journal of Persianate Studies 6. 1–14.
In her excellent introduction to the latest volume of Journal of Persianate Studies, a special issue, Pourshariati discusses the problem of periodisation in the study of Iranian history. Read the article here.