Monday, February 19, 2007

understanding iran

"Mad mullah, hostage taker, warrior brother, veiled sister—these are just some of the images of Iran prevalent among Americans. The Fall 2006 Reed College Public Policy Lecture Series brings together speakers with a remarkable depth of experience and understanding of Iran. They will explore the issues behind the images, and address what is likely to be a central foreign policy challenge in coming months: U.S. relations with Tehran"
These lectures look really interesting - there's over seven hours of audio material available to listen to, addressing issues like 'How the United States and Iran Demonize Each Other', 'Is a Military Clash Inevitable?' and what looks like a fascinating lecture on Islamic Nationalism, Fundamentalism and Patriarchy. We understand terribly little about Iran in the West, and could do with learning a great deal more. On an accessible level, it might be easier to read Rageh Omar's journalism, which is fascinating at the moment, but - although academic discourse is often rather dry - Iran is an exciting enough place to make these lectures look like promising listening. So check them out.

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