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Iraj Anvar — Life & Work
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Iraj Anvar
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Biography of Iraj Anvar

Iraj Anvar was born in Tehran, Iran. As a teen he moved to Italy with his family where later on he studied theatre with Alessandro Fersen in Rome. In the mid ’60s Anvar went back to Iran and, while pursuing a career in the theatre, he also began studying Persian literature and translation. After a career at Tehran Theatre Workshop, which he co-founded, he was offered a scholarship that took him in 1978 to New York University to continue his theatrical research. With the advent of the Iranian Revolution, Iraj Anvar transferred to the Department of the Near Eastern Studies as a TA and pursued a PhD, which he obtained in 1991. For the past three decades he has been teaching Persian Language and Culture at NYU, Harvard, Columbia and the University of Wisconsin. Dr. Anvar joined Brown University in the fall of 2008, where he has been teaching Persian Language and Culture.

Dr. Iraj Anvar contributed the essay “From Rūmī’s Mathnawī to the Popular Stage” (with co-author Peter Chelkowski) to the volume The Philosophy of Ecstasy: Rumi and the Sufi Tradition.

Dr. Iraj Anvar’s publications include Say Nothing: Poems of Jalal al-Din Rumi in Persian and English, Divani-I Shams-I Tabriz: Forty-Eight Ghazals, and The Green Sea of Heaven, Fifty Ghazals from the Diwan of Hafez” ( co-translation with Elizabeth T. Gray).

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