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The Sounds of Music in Tehran

Soheila Shahshahani

This article aims to contextualise music as it was experienced in Tehran in 2004 (when the research for this work was conducted) - music that comes from various ethnic groups within Iran, and music coming from the diaspora. The relationships between various genres of music and people, as well as between music and the government, are examined. The malleability of musicians and their capacity to coordinate their expertise with popular and governmental expectations and limitations are then analysed. In this way, a fascinating yet little studied area in the anthropology of Iran at the time of research is addressed.

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Appalling Tehran

Translation of the French Serial Story and Its Effect on the Persian Serial Story

Manizheh Abdollahi and Ehya Amalsaleh

settings for these representations. This article examines an important example, the first Persian serial story published in Iran, Morteza Moshfeq-e Kazemi’s Tehran-e Makhuf ( Appalling Tehran ), and the influences on it of the translation of French serial

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Nose Aesthetics

Rhinoplasty and Identity in Tehran

Sara Lenehan

Tehran currently hosts one of the largest rhinoplasty markets in the world, and rhinoplasty is the most sought after cosmetic surgery in the country. This article examines whether the rhinoplasty trend reflects a shift in Iranians' attitudes towards their ethnic and cultural identity. It is argued that fashion and beauty norms in Tehran are certainly informed by globalised images, but these are mediated by Iranian moralities of prestige, image consciousness and class awareness. Thus, while many of the persons interviewed described 'Iranian noses' as aesthetically inferior to 'European noses', their statements were not necessarily coupled with a desire to negate Iranian identity.

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Titus and Coriolanus in Tehran

Shakespeare's Roman Plays and Iran's Politics

Mohammadreza Hassanzadeh Javanian

mechanism. There Will Be Blood in Tehran The Iranian production of Titus Andronicus was adapted by Shahram Ahmadzadeh and directed by Masoud Tayebi. 4 It was Tayebi's third venture in directing a Shakespearean adaptation, following Hamlet (2014

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Publications, Films and Conferences

Kamyar Abdi, Sophie Accolas, and Rémi Berthon


Berman, Ilan (2005), Tehran Rising: Iran’s Challenge to the United States (Lanham, MD: Rowan & Littlefield). xx + 218 pp. ISBN 0-7425-4904-6. $24.95.


Friedmann, Daniel (2005), Que sont les immigrants devenus ? France, vidéo couleur, 49 minutes, CNRS Images.


‘Anthropozoology and Archaeozoology in the Ancient World’, 9th ASWA International Conference, 16–20 November 2008, Al-’Ain, United Arab Emirates

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Books and Conferences

Kamyar Abdi, M. Chloe Mulderig, A. Rouhbakhshan, Adham Ashirov, and Catherine Alexander


Postage, J. N. (ed.) (2007), Languages of Iraq: Ancient and Modern (London: British School of Archaeology in Iraq). ix + 187 pp., figs. ISBN. 978-0-903472-21-0. £15.00.

Reid, Donald Malcom (2002), Whose Pharaohs? Archaeology, Museums, and Egyptian National Identity from Napoleon to World War I (Berkeley: University of California Press). ix + 409 pp., 46 illus. ISBN 0520240693. $21.95.

Vivier-Muresan, Anne-Sophie (2006), Afzad: Ethnologie d’un village d’Iran (Tehran: IFRI). xxvii + 446p.


Scientific Conference, Karim Shaniyazov Lecture Series, 14 December 2007, Namangan, Uzbekistan

Scientific Workshop, ‘Anthropological Theories, Ethnic Nationalities’, 8–9 December 2007, Tehran, Iran

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Reinventing Anthropological Topics

Soheila Shahshahani


In this issue of AME you have articles which are within established anthropological topics. What is new in them is first, new data from the field, second, new search within old data, and finally new perspective of researchers from the area. So, while kinship, law, methodology, archaeology remain the pillars of our field, they are “reinvented” through new research by scholars some of whom are from the area. Syria, Iraq, and Iran are presented, and Kordish studies relates to all countries which have a Kord population. Our journal being concerned with culture and not political borders, we include an exquisite article on emblems in Uzbekistan which proves the persistence of cultural similarities in symbols from the Middle East and Central Asia.

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Téhéran troisième millénaire - musique!

Jean During

This article presents a survey of Persian music known as ‘learned’ – or better yet, ‘literate’ – that is currently practised, but from a perspective acquired over the past three decades. e subject is approached here not from a ‘scientifically neutral’ point of view, but rather in a subjective and narrative manner, through anecdotes, observations, personal reflections and especially aesthetic judgements. These are based on the author’s familiarity with Persian musical culture and on the broad consensus that his analyses and his critical approach have received among the community of Iranian artists and amateurs. is point of view emphasises the ‘post-modern’ character of the contemporaneous musical culture, thus surpassing the ancient-modern dispute while at the same time acknowledging certain requirements for quality.

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Facing the Future

The Artistic and Diasporic Afterlife of the Iran-Iraq War

Roxanne Varzi

How do the cultural and emotional after-effects of the Iran-Iraq War influence artistic production among Iranian artists living outside of Iran? How do Iranian diaspora self-portraits act as socio-political memoirs? This article addresses these questions by looking at some examples of diaspora artists who through their art somehow remain political 'subjects' of contemporary Iran, even as they grapple with the complexities of 'being away' - if that is ever really possible.

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Young and defiant in Tehran by Khosravi, Shahram