(Red)Framing Baku: Photographing Urban Change in Azerbaijan’s Capital

Ahmad Muxtar’s Red Frame not only documents Baku’s rapid urban transformation, but also explores the ways in our perceptions of urban space are framed by social, political, and economic forces.

Fighting Other People’s Wars: Afghan Soldiers on the Syrian Battlefield

The presence of Afghan refugees in Iran as mercenary troops for Assad’s counterinsurgency complicates present understandings of the foreign fighter, often affiliated with the catch-all figure of the jihadi. (Photo Credit: Mujtaba Jalali)

See You In Tehran: Tips for the Summer Traveler in Iran's Capital

With more and more tourists visiting Iran every day, Ajam and See You In Iran have teamed up to bring you a travel series to Iran’s diverse cities. This first installation focuses on the vibrant urban life of Tehran, Iran’s largest city and capital.

Towards An Archive of the Basij: Memories from Iran’s Volunteer Militia

Using materials from the Ajam Digital Archive, Narges Bajoghli recounts the experiences of Iran-Iraq War veterans who spent endless days during their youth fighting in close combat in dark and bloody trenches.

Ritual Matter(s): Nowruz Ceremonies of the Zoroastrian New Year in Tehran

Perhaps the most widely known among these is the ceremonial spread called the Khan-e Nowruz or the Haft Chin. It features a variety of objects that symbolize key figures and values of Zoroastrian cosmology. The arrangement of this spread — or most of its elements — has historically emerged as a cultural practice shared among numerous peoples across West Asia, the Caucasus, and India.

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