Persian Rugs and the Aesthetics of Whiteness in Apartheid-Era South Africa

It is a fascinating accident of history that “Persian carpets” became a part, albeit a small one, of South African whiteness.

A Year in Ajam: Revisiting Our Best Articles of 2015

As Ajam Media Collective celebrates its fourth anniversary and the start of 2016, we wanted to review our successes and our 10 best articles of 2015.

Emerging Scholarship: Mikiya Koyagi on Travel, Mobility, and the Trans-Iranian Railroad

In another installment of the Emerging Scholarship series, Mikiya Koyagi talks about the construction of the Trans-Iranian Railroad and how it transformed conceptions of Iranian society.

Exploring Iranian Migration: Reimagining the Brain Drain

The fact that Iranians talk about brain drain as if it was a uniquely huge Iranian problem suggests that brain drain is a proxy for their anxieties about the state of the country, rather than actual empirical evaluation of the country’s migration. (Image Credit: Alireza Darvish)

Sacralizing a Shia Public Sphere: Muharram Commemorations Across Iran

A photo essay depicting Muharram observances and preparation across Iran in October of 2015. During the Islamic month of Muharram, Muslims of all backgrounds participate in a series of rituals observing the martyrdom of Husayn ibn ‘Ali, the grandson of the prophet Muhammad, and his companions at the Battle of Karbala in 680 A.D.

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