Shiraz Hajiani, PhD

hajiani @ islamicate.net
Curriculum Vitae

I am scholar of religion and history and am an accomplished educator, researcher, mentor and communicator with over a decade of experience in teaching and advising undergraduates, graduates and continuing education students. I use multi-disciplinary approaches, including digital humanities methodologies, to study and teach religion and history. I specialise in Islamic history and thought, Shiʿism, Ismaili studies and with regional expertise in the study of the Middle East, North Africa, Central and South Asia

Select Presentations at Academic Conferences

2019-Nov Manifesto for the Ẓuhūr of the Imam—Ḥikāyat-i Sayyid-i Nāṣir-i Khusraw, an Early Nizari Doctrinal Treatise dated before the Declaration of the Qiyāmat-i Qiyāmāt, IIS PhD Seminar 2019, Institute of Ismaili Studies, London
2018-Feb Keeping the Faith—Religion in Tajikistan. South and Central Asia Fulbright Researchers Conference, New Delhi, India
2017-Oct Participated in Workshop: Silk Roads in the Mountains of Central Asia: Ancient Routes & Modern Challenges in Times of Global Change. Dushanbe, Tajikistan. Organised by University of Central Asia.
2017-Mar Munāẓarāt (Religious Disputations) as Weapons of War in Saljuq-Ismaili Relations. Second Ismaili Studies Conference, University of Ottawa.
2016-Dec Divided in Death: Boundary Formations Through Control of Funerary Customs and Ritual Space in a Khoja Community—in panel “Identity Constructions” at Inaugural Khōjā Studies Conference, École des hautes études en sciences sociales. Paris.
2016-Nov Organised and chaired panel: Nasir-i Khusraw and His Associations: Shifting Biographies and Affiliations in the Appropriations of the Persian Poet, Philosopher and Fatimid Daʿi (summoner). - Panelists: Daniel Beben (Nazarbaev U.), Shiraz Hajiani (Chicago), Nurmamodsho Nurmamodshoev (IIS, London) - Middle East Studies Association (MESA)
2014-Nov The Conversions of Ḥasan-i Ṣabbāḥ—in panel “Discovering and Reinterpreting Key Sources of Ismaili Thought and History” organised by Paul Walker (Chicago) - MESA
2013-Nov Ismailism and Persian Messianisms - in panel “Comparative Messianism: Figuration and Expectation in Non-Abrahamic Religions” organised by Kimberley Patton (Harvard) and Kurt Anderson (Toronto) - AAR
2006-Oct Humanities Discourse in Tajikistan - in panel “Humanities Discourses in Central Asia” organised by Yasmin Lodi (AKHP). Central Eurasian Studies Society Annual Meeting, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI

Select Invited Talks and Lectures

2018-Jun The Problem of Religious Illiteracy and How to Counter it—Lectures at: US Embassy Bishkek, University of Central Asia, Kara Suu Madrasa and at five American Corners in Kyrgyzstan
2018-Jun Digital Humanities Tools in Narrative Analyses and Research—Lecture at Eastern Kashgari University, Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan
2017-Dec STEMming the Crises in Education through Pluralistic Cultural Studies Approaches in the Humanities—Lecture at 20th Anniversary International Conference, “Aga Khan Humanities Project: Between Past and Future, Strategic Assessment and Next Steps.” University of Central Asia.

2014-Mar Classical Arabic Poetry—Lecture organised by the Center for Arabic Language and Culture, the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at the University of Chicago, and the Illinois Humanities Council—Chicago Cultural Center
2006 Pluralism in Islam (responding to the violence around the publication of the Danish cartoons depicting Prophet Muhammad); Constitution of the Ismaili Muslims: Building Institutional Structures in Tajikistan; Spaces of Worship: Mapping Sacred Geographies in Central Asia—Lectures at universities and cultural venues in Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan
2005 Restoration of the Caliphate: A Case of Selective Retrieval of the Past; Qurʾanic Interpretation: Islamic Hermeneutic Traditions—Lectures at universities and cultural venues in Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan
2001-2002 Talks on Islam and Muslims at schools, business and local government meetings in the Hudson Valley Region of New York in the wake of the terror attacks of September 2001

Select Conferences and Panels Organised, Academic Service

2018-Jun Provided Research Methodologies Training: 5-Day Workshop for the Kyrgyz State Commission on Religious Affairs Research Staff arranged through the auspices of the US Embassy in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan

2015-May Panel Chair: Shiʿi Thought - University of Chicago Middle East History and Theory (MEHAT) Annual Conference

2014-Nov Organised and Chaired Panel: Intellectual Underpinnings of Marshall Hodgson’s Islamicate Venture. Panelists: Michael Bechtel (Chicago), Kyle Bellows (Chicago), Lydia Kiesling (Berkeley) - MESA
2014-Oct Founded and organised: Ismaili Studies Conference, University of Chicago. Conceived, structured and chaired this cross disciplinary state of the field conference which brought together 25 scholars and researchers in Ismaili Studies from around the world on 16-17 Oct-2014. http://ismaili.uchicago.edu/. Follow-up conferences are scheduled to take place biennially.

2014-Oct Organised: Islamicate Studies Symposium. Conceived, structured and co-chaired this field-defining (re)examination of Islamic Studies which brought together some 20 leading scholars in the field on 18 October-2014. http://islamicate.uchicago.edu/
2013-Nov Organised and chaired panel: The Venture of Islam (U. Chicago Press, 1974)—40 Years On—Do We Need New Paradigms for the Study of Islamicate Civilizations? Panelists: Asma Afsaruddin (Indiana U.), Kecia Ali (Boston U.), Vincent Cornell (Emory U.) - AAR

2011-2019 Member of Planning Committee of the annual International Theology Conference, Jerusalem along with Adam Afterman (Tel Aviv), Menachem Fisch (Tel Aviv), Rabbi Donniel Hartman (Shalom Hartman Institute), Kimberley Patton (Harvard), Rev. Peter Pettit (Muhlenberg), Karla Suomala (Luther) and Nargis Virani (New School)
• 2017 Chaired Muslim Hevruta Plenary (text study session)
• 2016 Chaired book talk by Rabbi Donniel Hartman: “Putting God Second: How to Save Religion from Itself”
• 2015 Participated in Planning Committee to restructure the conference
• 2014 Corruption has Appeared in the Land, Sea and Air - Led the Muslim Hevruta and gave the introductory and plenary lectures for the study of Muslim texts I had chosen for study by participants on the conference theme: “The Religious Problem of Environmental Ethics”; participated as the Muslim Scholar in the three person Public Lecture on the theme of the Conference
• 2013 Led the conceptualisation of the conference theme: The Potential of Forgiveness in a World of Justice and Reconciliation
2009-2011 Conference participant - Invited among some 50 Jewish, Christian and Muslim scholars of religion and theologians from around the world
2009 Holy Envy: A Muslim Perspective—Public Lecture in memory of Krister Stendahl, Bishop of Stockholm and Professor at Harvard Divinity School

2012-April Organised student conference: Bridging Boundaries of Faith. Assessment Project for students in my “Conversations between Jews, Christians and Muslims” class at Lake Forest College
2011-May Shahnama of Firdawsi—Celebrating 1000 Years of the Persian Book of Kings. Organised the event consisting of lecture, poetry recital and musical performance—University of Chicago Graham School and the Chicago Cultural Center
2005 Student Representative on Harvard Divinity School Tenure Review Committee for promotion of Kimberley Patton to full professor
2004 Organised, structured and chaired the fifth annual graduate student-run Islam in America Conference at Harvard Divinity School

Islamicate Ventures of 
Shiraz Hajiani, Ph.D.

hajiani @ islamicate.net