My research focuses on the history and practice of political thought and theorising in modern Iran and the wider Islamic world, as well as the engagement of Muslim, Marxist and socialist intellectuals and political movements in the Middle East with political concepts and ideologies emanating from Euro-America and the Global South. I am especially interested in the manner in which political concepts are taken up, deployed, operationalised and reconfigured in the process of concrete political struggles and social contestation. In this respect work my seeks to consciously straddle the disciplines of intellectual history and political theory.
Before coming to Goldsmiths I was a British Academy Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the University of Oxford, where I also undertook my doctoral research on the political thought of Iran's post-revolutionary reform movement.
- DPhil in Middle Eastern Studies, Queen’s College, University of Oxford 2014
- MA in Continental Philosophy, University of Warwick 2007
- PGDip in Philosophy, University of Warwick 2006
- BSc (Hons) in Government and History, London School of Economics and Political Science 2005
Teaching and Supervision
- Modern Political Theory
- International Politics of the Middle East
- Colonialism, Power, Resistance
My recent monograph, "Revolution and its Discontents: Political Thought and Reform in Iran", charts the political and philosophical genealogy of Iran’s post-revolutionary reform movement in the context of the global Cold War and Euro-American traditions of Cold War liberalism and was published by Cambridge University Press in 2019.
I also co-edited a volume. "Political Parties in the Middle East" (Routledge, 2019), which will be published in late 2019. The volume brings together articles authored by a host of leading scholars on the history and politics of political parties in the modern Middle East and seeks to assess their historical significance, as well as their abiding relevance or lack thereof, in the aftermath of the Arab Uprisings of 2011.
I am currently working on a second monograph that examines the history of political thought and political theorising in modern Iran through a global and decolonial lens, interrogating, in particular, the relationship between sovereignty, self-determination and coloniality.
My research interests include modern Islamic political thought, political theology, Marxism in the Global South, trends in Marxist and critical theory, travelling and reception theory, the intellectual and political history of the Middle East, political Islam and Islamist movements, as well as anti-colonial, postcolonial and decolonial theory.
Further profile content
Revolution and its Discontents: Political Thought and Reform in Iran
Cambridge University Press
Jalal’s Angels of Deliverance and Destruction: Genealogies of Theo-politics, Sovereignty and Coloniality in Iran and Israel
Modern Intellectual History (co-authored with Professor Yaacov Yadgar, forthcoming)
The Origins of Communist Unity: Anti-Colonialism and Revolution in Iran’s Tri-continental Moment
British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies
From Etelāʿāti to Eslāhtalabi: Saʿid Hajjarian, Political Theology and the Politics of Reform in Post-Revolutionary Iran
Mostafa Malekian and Post-Revolutionary Iranian 'Religious Intellectualism': Spirituality, Siyasat-zadegi and (A)political Self-Improvement
Digest of Middle East Studies
I am the Series Editor of Radical Histories of the Middle East (Oneworld Publications), which focuses on the intellectual and political history of the region as well as hitherto neglected social and subaltern movements, and was formerly an Associate Editor at the British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies.
My writings have been published in the British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies, Iranian Studies, Digest of Middle East Studies, Middle East Journal, Foreign Policy, Jadaliyya, Al Jazeera, Lobelog, Jacobin, The Guardian, among other venues, and he has also appeared widely on the international media.
Grants and awards
British Academy Postdoctoral Research Fellowship
I am interested in supervising prospective PhD students addressing issues in comparative political theory, modern Islamic political thought, contemporary Iranian politics and society, as well as Marxism in the Global South.