Zoroastrianism in Iran and India: Then and Now

Call for Applications

The Institute of Religious Studies at the University of Zurich (UZH) invites to the summer school:

Zoroastrianism in Iran and India: Then and Now
August 30th – September 2nd 2015

Zoroastrism is one of the oldest living religious traditions today. It shaped the Persian Empire and strongly influenced other religions, such as Judaism and Islam.
Zoroastrian communities today in Iran, India and in the diaspora are faced with typical challenges of modernity. They are confronted with the need to negotiate the preservation of tradition in the light of requirements of tolerance and the preservation of identity in an age of globalization.
Our Summer School appeals primarily to Master students and PHDs and will be conducted bilingually (English-German).
In lectures and workshops both historic and contemporary socio-scientific subject areas (rituals, beliefs, conflicts, etc.) are discussed with the contributors.
In the discussion with Zoroastrian guests the contemporary situation in India and Switzerland in particular will be analyzed.

KAA E-11
Religionswissenschaftliches Seminar
Kantonsschulstrasse 1
8001 Zürich

  • Registration is open until June 30th.
  • Please register via E-Mail:
  • There is no participation fee.

The Program of the Zoroastrian Summer School:

15.15 – 16.00 Dorothea Lüddeckens: Introduction
16.15 – 18.45 Jenny Rose: Zoroastrians in Iran: Then and Now
19.30 Come Together: Invitation for a Summer Evening in Zurich


9.00 – 10.30 Christoph Uehlinger: Is there a Zoroastrian tradition? A conversation on historical reconstruction, cultural memory and religious identity discourse
10.45 – 12.15 Jenny Rose: From Samarkand to Chang’An: Zoroastrians along the Silk Road
12.15 – 13.15 Lunch Break
13.15 – 14.45 Farida Stickel: Between Assimilation and Rebellion: The Zoroastrians under Islamic Rule in Iran up to the 10th Century
15.15 – 16.45 Dorothea Lüddeckens: Milk and Sugar: Zoroastrianism in an Indian Environment. Community, Identity, Exclusion and Tolerance – Challenges to this day
17.15 – 19.30 Little Zizou, by Sooni Taraporewala


09.00 – 10.30 Jenny Rose: Agents of Change: Dynamic Encounters between Parsis and New Englanders in the late 18th and early 19th Centuries
10.45 – 12.15 Rafael Walthert: Reflexive Community – Theoretical Perspectives
12.15 – 13.15 Lunch Break
13.15 – 14.45 Dorothea Lüddeckens: Contemporary Zoroastrian Rituals
15.15 – 16.45 Dorothea Lüddeckens: Facing Death – Purity and Impurity, Break and Continuing Bonds. Dealing with Death and Dead
17.15 – 19.30 Shirin Farhad Ki Toh Nikal Padi, by Bela Bhansali Sehgal


09.15 – 10.45 Jenny Rose: The European Fascination with Zoroaster
11.00 – 12.30 Being Parsi in the Diaspora. Discussion with Zoroastrian Guests
12.30 – 13.30 Lunch Break
13.30 – 14.15 Conclusion