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“Discovering Cyrus and the Idea of Iran: From the Cartoons of The 300 to the Craft of History"

Reza Zarghamee brings multiple perspectives and deep knowledge to his account of the life of Cyrus the Great. Born in London in 1978 to Iranian parents, Zarghamee grew up in Boston. His immersion in the ancient history of Iran started early: At the age of thirteen, he began studying Old Persian cuneiform at the urging of Professor Richard Frye, a founder of the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at Harvard University. Later, he took courses in Zoroastrianism and Manichaenism taught by another eminent Harvard scholar, Prods Oktor Skjaervø. He attended Columbia University, pursuing a double-major in history and biology, studying Persian language and literature, and graduating with honors in 2000. Three years later, he received a J.D. degree from Harvard Law School, where his writings included a comparison of ancient Near Eastern legal systems. Since then, he has practiced law at the firm of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP while continuing his scholarly investigations of the era of Cyrus. His extensive travels in the Middle East have taken him across much of the empire founded by that giant of history twenty-six centuries ago.
He lives in Arlington, Virginia, where he is currently at work on a life of Darius, the second book in Iran’s Age of Empire.



Tuesday, May 6, 2014. 06:30PM


Jordan Hall, Building 420, Room 041


Iranian Studies Program


Lecture in English
Free and open to the public