Homayun Alam (ed.)

On the Concept of Iran and the Iranian Cultural Sphere

Iran in West-Asia

1. Edition 2021, ISBN print: 978-3-8288-4602-9, ISBN online: 978-3-8288-7665-1, https://doi.org/10.5771/9783828876651

Tectum, Baden-Baden
Bibliographic information
Te ct um Homayun Alam (Ed.) On the Concept of Iran and the Iranian Cultural Sphere Iran in West-Asia Te ct um H om ay un A la m (E d. ) Te ct um O n th e Co nc ep t o f I ra n an d th e Ira ni an C ul tu ra l S ph er e Homayun Alam (Ed.) On the Concept of Iran and the Iranian Cultural Sphere Homayun Alam (Ed.) On the Concept of Iran and the Iranian Cultural Sphere Iran in West-Asia Tectum Verlag Die Deutsche Nationalbibliothek verzeichnet diese Publikation in der Deutschen Nationalbibliografie; detaillierte bibliografische Daten sind im Internet über http://dnb.d-nb.de abrufbar. The Deutsche Nationalbibliothek lists this publication in the Deutsche Nationalbibliografie; detailed bibliographic data are available on the Internet at http://dnb.d-nb.de ISBN 978-3-8288-4602-9 (Print) 978-3-8288-7665-1 (ePDF) British Library Cataloguing-in-Publication Data A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library. ISBN 978-3-8288-4602-9 (Print) 978-3-8288-7665-1 (ePDF) Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Homayun Alam (Ed.) On the Concept of Iran and the Iranian Cultural Sphere Iran in West-Asia 262 pp. Includes bibliographic references. ISBN 978-3-8288-4602-9 (Print) 978-3-8288-7665-1 (ePDF) 1. Auflage 2021 © Nomos Verlagsgesellschaft, Baden-Baden 2021 Alle Rechte, auch die des Nachdrucks von Auszügen, der fotomechanischen Wiedergabe und der Übersetzung, vorbehalten. This work is subject to copyright. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or any information storage or retrieval system, without prior permission in writing from the publishers. Under § 54 of the German Copyright Law where copies are made for other than private use a fee is payable to “Verwertungsgesellschaft Wort”, Munich. No responsibility for loss caused to any individual or organization acting on or refraining from action as a result of the material in this publication can be accepted by Nomos or the author. On Behalf of Humanity in a Transnational, Transcultural and Interdisciplinary Era Adam’s sons are body limbs, to say; For they’re created of the same clay. Should one organ be troubled by pain, Others would suffer severe strain. Thou, careless of people’s suffering, Deserve not the name, “human being”.1 1 This aphorism – Bani Adam – is of Saad’i from Shiraz (13 century AD), translated by Vahid Dastjerdi. Dedicated to Mirza Mohammad Naimie Khorasani IX Contents I. Preface 1 II. Interviews 11 1. Safar Abdullah 13 2. Karimi Hakkak 29 3. Philipp Gerrit Kreyenbroek 49 4. Ali M. Ansari 57 5. Bert Fragner 69 III. Essays and Articles 77 1. Reza Deghati – The long Road of Exile 79 2. John Baily – The development of the 14-stringed Herati dutâr 85 3. Richard Stoneman – Xerxes’ Persia 103 4. Farid Zoland – A Brief Introduction (by Homayun Alam) 113 5. Hamid Reza Yousefi – The Neglected and Misunderstood Teachings of Sartosht 117 6. Nahid Morshedlou – The Ghaznavid’s Heritage Beyond the Greater Iran 143 7. Makhmalbaf Film House – A brief Introduction (by Homayun Alam) 159 8. Gabriele Dold-Ghadar – From Balkh to Ṭanğa. Settings in the Medieval Trading World 163 9. Sardar Kohistani – Geopolitical Position of Afghanistan 205 IV. Postface 239 V. Contributors 245 X Contents 1 I. Preface Iranian studies as a university subject in Germany elaborate the notion and the concept of the Iranian cultural sphere over the past centuries and beyond. In doing so, Iran and the Iranian cultural sphere are divided into old and new disciplines of Iranian studies (German: Iranistik). There are diverse research fields and scopes in Iranian studies such as politics, geography, economics, culture, linguistics, myth, poetry, anthropology, mystics, ethnicity, gender, colonialism/post-colonialism, and religion. This well-known dimensions could be studied holistically or separately. This present anthology tries to reflect a time span of the teachings, publications, conferences and thoughts of the editor from the years of 2015 to 2020. However, it was necessary to offer another perception about contemporary Iran and its cultural sphere: The notion of Iran as a proper name is often contested by mostly all neighbouring countries. The concept of culture, which is “farhang” in Persian, could be translated as education, knowledge, dictionary, and thus exemplifies its dynamic connotation. Every so often, “Iran-e-Farhang-i” is compared to the contemporary political nation-state of Iran, while the first is much more historical, and even larger by size, is the one of presentday Iran evaluated as political. This present book consists of interviews, essays and articles. The contributors are from many domains of research, art and scholarship. To gather many viewpoints based on research and first-hand experiences was the objective, and equally the greatest challenge. The conducted interviews in the second chapter are done with scholars of Iranian studies, history, literature, poetry, and music ethnology. All the interviewees are renowned in their field of research. In addition, the contributors of the third chapter with their essays and articles are key producers in their purview. To continue, among them one will find a photographer, filmmaker, ethnomusician and geographer. These contributors often work with interdisciplinary methodologies, thus, transnationally oriented, while their own definition of culture, identity, language, and history is based on research. In the fourth chapter, or just the postface, the editor himself is pursing the question of “Why Middle East and not West-Asia”: It is a reflection about a notion, with the critical claim to a greater and lesser extent of a post-colonial era and its standpoints. Transnationality Researchers use the term transnationality as an approach to single out common roots of culture, myth, migration, and language across borders. In the contemporary political system of nation-states, nations with the same interests, pedigree, language, religion etc. are interconnected through many platforms, especially in the age of the internet. With these perspectives, one can skip political-territorial borders to celebrate, for instance, the Iranian New Year’s Eve, “Nowruz”, in the Iranian cultural sphere. Nowruz is an event that occurs once a year on March 21st to remind humankind about the awakening of nature. Wishing to celebrate cultural fests, citizens of other nation-states are obligated to apply for a visa to enter the neighbouring country. So Nowruz, which literally means the new day, is celebrated in Iran, in all the neighbouring countries of Iran, and beyond. In recent years, the scholarship of Iranian studies, in collaboration with Iran and other neighbouring states, even developed the transnational and transcultural concept of “Nowruzistan”. Thus far, Philip Kreyenbroek explains in his interview about Iranian religions, where he provides details about their differences and 2 Preface commonalities. Sometimes, people from the Iranian cultural sphere imagine the religion of Zarathustra as the primary source of Nowruz. In the same way, Hamid Reza Yousefi discusses in his article “The Neglected and Misunderstood Teachings of Sartosht”. With his article “Xerxes’ Persia” Richard Stoneman sheds light on that same time period, which is often associated with mere war rather than flourishing cultural exchanges. Colonialism In the age of modernity – even though we have learnt in western terms of cultural memory to speak about “Aufklärung” in German, “Age of Enlightenment” or “Le Siècle des Lumières” in French: Countries of the global south and east have become the hinterland. In the case of Iranian cultural sphere, the current political borders were outlined because of a power struggle. The outcome was divided ethnicities and the downsizing of ancient linguistic and cultural ties. However, it should not be buried in oblivion that every great civilization has its distinct features and passes through various levels of evolution. Iran as a local empire is a case in point, which is asked through the interview with Ali M. Ansari. How can we imagine such an evolution? Many Iranian political and even cultural capital cities prior to the idea of the nation-state were located in contemporary places such as Afghanistan, Iraq, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Pakistan or the Caucasus: These countries represent the Iranian cultural sphere. In the long nineteenth century Iran lost a huge amount of square kilometres of its area due to the intervention of colonial powers. Today, many people are confused when speaking about the concept of Iran, which is immediately linked to Persian. Above and beyond Iran, Persian is today the official language of Afghanistan and Tajikistan. It is important to keep in mind that there are many ethnic Persians and Persian-speakers in Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Iraq, Paki- 3 Preface stan, Kazakhstan, the Persian Gulf States, India, and China. People of Persian ethnicity are called “Tajik” in the context of Central Asia, which is, according to Bert Fragner in his interview, an ascription rather than a self-attribution. For instance, before the very eruption of the colonial age in modern time history, Iran called itself “Mamalek-e Mahruse-ye Iran”, which means “The United States of Iran”. Identity The Peace of Westphalia in 1648 was a milestone for the Western and European political culture. While the term nation-state is defined by the presence of state, nation and borders, it is important to put the phenomenon of borders in contemporary time under the microscope. If someone tends to trace back borders to the first humans walked on earth, we will find out that the limits were defined by rivers, valleys, mountains or forests. Empires such as the Persian, the Roman and the Ottoman had borders, but these were not exactly defined compared with our modern time and age. In contrast, borders are politically demarcated in our current age and codified in the international law. The modern individual has become the citizen and the subject of the state. Consequently, political and national borders are to be seen as a matter of fact. Furthermore, citizens are documented in our time, which is more political than cultural. For that reason almost every single person on earth has an “Identity Card”. At this point, the question remains of whether a national identity card completes and for that reason represent the entire identity of a citizen or not? Taking this into consideration, it is a question of time until normative discourses and charged debates such as “majority versus minority” will become at stake. In Iran, as well as in the Iranian cultural sphere (Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Pakistan, etc.), there are ethnicities, languages and religions, which have lived side by side since the very foundation of their history, maybe from 2500 to 5000 years ago, or even 4 Preface more than that. A Person from the Iranian cultural sphere is usually multilingual and has – similar to a western man or woman in its very stereotype – multiple identities and tendencies towards life. After knowing about these facts, how does it come borders are drawn between people? Is it possible that people of the Iranian cultural sphere were not separated because of being very much different, but for the reason that of having much more in common in their time, spaces and environment? To answer such a question, we have many references to choose an appropriate answer from: One of the first options to approach a response is the power of the colonial masters and the weakness of former Iranian leaders in the long nineteenth century. In this framework, a single ethnicity with its cultural background got the preferential right of being a nation, while measures of judgement were less lying in culture and rationality. In this transitional process a nation runs institutions, scripts, media, language, images, history, and in the end the everyday life. In Iran, Persian became the national language – with a 1250-year history in poetry – which initiated in what is Central Asia, and then the two countries of Tajikistan and Afghanistan in present time. The poets in the Persian case were more philosophers who expressed their deep thoughts in poetic phrases. Music, music instruments and musicians are beyond forced political divisions occasionally the proper apparatus to understand the boundless influence of culture. In this case John Baily showcases with his article “The Development of the 14-stringed Herati dutâr” how a music instrument and its master effect for instance the vast regions of western Afghanistan and eastern Iran in a transcultural order. In Afghanistan, Persian (Farsi-Dari) is competing with Pashto, the other national language. But, Persian remains the language of cultural production (poetry, literature, and newspaper), official institutions, media and the bridging language among all different ethnicities in Afghanistan. There is the question here among many how, for example, Afghanistan became a state. In this case, Sardar Kohistani explores 5 Preface in his article “Geopolitical Position of Afghanistan” historical evidences. In Tajikistan, Persian regained its former position within society and state following the independence from the Soviet Union in 1991. Language The language is an appropriate indication for understanding different approaches about the Iranian cultural sphere. Prior to the Islamic age, Persian had – along with Greek, Sanskrit, Chinese (Mandarin) and Latin – a history without interruption, referring to contemporary scholarships. The Persian language (New Persian) went through a 13-hundredyear development, divided into three genres: Khorasan-i, Araq-i and Hend-i. The genre of Khorasan-i consists the contemporary states of Iran (eastern part), Afghanistan, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, and Turkmenistan. The genre of Araq-i entails states as Iran (western part), Azerbaijan and Iraq. The genre of Hend-i consists of states in the subcontinent, which are divided today into Pakistan, India, Bangladesh and Kashmir. These three genres have also subdivisions, but as a follower of this discourse one should know the founder of Persian poetry “Rudaki”, who hails from modern Tajikistan. In addition, the Persian language in the Ottoman Empire was used for cultural issues and court proceedings. In the same vein, Persian was a bridging tool for military and religious affairs – all Arabic words passed to Ottoman-Turkish and later to modern Turkish have their roots from Persian as the bridging language. The influence of Persian as a civilization beyond western, central and southern Asia is not much discussed. To continue, as historians wrote their accounts about Andalus for example, it seems that its dynamics has had by eclectical means other outlines, titles and denominations. Gabriele Dold-Ghadar’s article “From Balkh to Ṭanğa” introduces the reader about the possibly unknown, or deliberately ignored, impact of Persian as a comprehended culture of the Mediterranean that reaches present-day Morocco, and as well Spain. 6 Preface Persian was at the advent of Islam (7th century AD) the contact and uniting language, at least, in Western and Central Asia in general, and in the Iranian cultural sphere, in particular. It is the Lingua Franca in many ways until now when it comes to reading historical accounts of the Turks and the Indian subcontinent, or just to communicate among nationals in modern Iran. Nahid Morshedlou’s article the “Ghaznavid’s heritage beyond the Greater Iran” is an example on what scope the Persian language was used for centuries in the Indian subcontinent. The Iranian cultural sphere is reinterpreted from two directions: From outside, through old colonial powers and the contemporary order of nation-states (etic), and from inside, through its diverse inhabitants (emic). The internal relationship could be significantly severed, if the same ethnicities, who lived together before the partition of the Iranian cultural sphere, pursued the narrative of “we vs. them”, i. e. Iranians vs. Afghanistanis, Tajikistanis, Azerbaijanis, Uzbekistanis, Iraqis, Pakistanis, and so on. Misusing identity concepts and “othering” the old ethnical, lingual and religious belongings are topics to be tackled by incumbent governments, and not only the scholarship of Iranian studies. Contemporary transnational and transcultural Iranians, like the photographer Reza Deghati, contributed to this anthology the brief autobiographical article “The long Road of Exile” along with some of his magnificent coloured portraits from different motifs. Similar to the work of Reza Deghati are the influences of Makhmalbaf Film House and that of the songwriter and composer Farid Zoland to the Iranian cultural sphere: For both, the editor has written “A brief Introduction”. Conclusion The name of Iran etymologically stems from “aryanam”, then developed into “Eran” and has subsequently become Iran: Geographically, Iran starts from the eastern highlands of Afghanistan and the western parts of Pakistan, and ends up where is going to flatten in Iraq. 7 Preface This view, reminds us of nostalgia, which is not much wrong. But if we take all the languages existed before the political demarcations as an example, we will be able to detect those tongues in the same realm again. We should only reflect on the shared history of Iranian and Persian people in Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Iran, and beyond. To continue, so why do contemporary Iranians count all the poets, poems, inventors, literary figures, scientists and philosophers of the Middle Ages as Iranians without caring to share this legacy with Persians from the other modern states? Where is the yesterday’s polycentric and the many current disconnected centres of the “Persianate World”? The answers to these complex questions are offered by Ahmad Karimi-Hakkak in his interview. Who is eligible to call himself/herself as the only Persian and the others as outsiders? It is necessary to focus on the present ethnic, religious, cultural and language misconceptions of North Africa, West and Central Asia. These misconceptions caused yesterday’s, and are causing today’s unrewarding conflicts. Social engineering processes did not work out for its masterminds the way it happened in the greater connected lands of West, Central and South Asia, but which were e. g. disconnected by the concept of nation-states. In the twentieth century Iran was almost the only country to care about the rich Persian legacy of literature and poetry. In contrast, in Afghanistan, Persian people (so-called Tajiks) and their language were not much promoted or state-aided due to language policies– the name of their language was changed from “Farsi” into “Dari” in the constitution of 1964. This step went against the currents and nature of their own Khorasan-i language roots of Persian. Today, Persians from other countries are reclaiming their historical share of the notion of Iran, as well as Iranian and Persian legacy. As Safar Abdullah puts it in his interview: “Modern-day Iran is a part of itself.” What might be an appropriate approach for all these grievances? The obvious answer might be not aloof: The need of a common historiography. This endeavour should be taken into account under the 8 Preface auspices of researchers from e. g. the three concerned countries of Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan, and other countries as well, which is not only an idealistic idea at this point. In a time and age of transculturalism, transnationalism, global, glocal and regional migration and digital world the yesterday’s version what “we” were, is getting an unfashionable model to take pride in it. The cultural memory is important for an ancient civilization in the Iranian cultural sphere in which Persian survived as one of the important languages with its literature and first and foremost poetry. Inclusion and not exclusion, inviting and not ostracizing, remembering together and not only alone: Future measurements of multiperspective nations/states/regions/cities are those, which shape a postmodern and multilateral era. The eminent wisdom culture of the Iranian cultural sphere with the Persian language and its poetry had since the foundation of the New Persian many geographical centers. That is to state, Persian as such was not isolated or confined by politics. Undeniably, what was disconnected through the last 20–30 decades since the advent of modernity is not much easy to get close in a peaceful habit, fast pace and wishful reconnection. In the final analysis, without the collaboration of my colleague Petros Tesfai this book would not undergo a last correction phase in a suitable sense. Finally, yet importantly, I am deeply grateful to the sponsors without whom in times of the Covid-19 pandemic nobody else could make this present publication to become true: Raffaele De Luca “Lello” and Emir Gredic. Frankfurt am Main, Germany, October 2020 Homayun Alam 9 Preface 11 II. Interviews 13 1. Safar Abdullah1 1. Please, likewise a preface, tell us on the degree and tradition of Persian language in Kazakhstan. Generally spoken, in Kazakhstan, but more in Almaty, there are a number of Persian speakers. You can find Tajiks, Afghan migrants and a limited number of Iranians. In the southern province of Kazakhstan there’re some Persian schools for Tajiks who live there for years. But two things shouldn’t get in oblivion: One thing is the Persian language and the other things are Iranian languages. Here are people like Kurds of Kazakhstan whose roots are surely to be traced back to Iran and who are of Iranian descent. In this region if you travel or walk around, in every of its cities, you will detect hints of Iranian culture and civilization, also in the city of Almaty – in the square of republic you are 1 http://www.persianacademy.ir/fa/Y020394.aspx, last accessed on 29 July 2015. Language and literature in contemporary Kazakhstan: In conversation with Dr. Safar Abdullah. Interview was conducted by Hassan Gharibi in Persian (Translation by Homayun Alam). “According to “Taj-News” the golden price of unity of Kazakhstan’s society is given to Dr. Safar Abdullah. It is an appreciation for his great contribution in which he intended to increase the cultural and ties of friendship between the folks. Safar Abdullah contributed a lot with his researches and ouvrages to the growth of a national culture, in the same time, while maintaining close ties amid Iranian ethnicities. With gratitude of this distinguished scholar, our colleague Hassan Gharibi who is a collaborator of the “Academy of Persian Language and Literature” of Iran and a deputy at the “Centers of Science and Culture” in Tajikistan, conducted an interview with him about “Persian language and literature in Kazakhstan”.” going to see a statue of a Scythes’ soldier. You know that Scythes’ were of Iranian pedigree. In the national museum of Kazakhstan there are many other statues about which Kazakh’s researchers and scholars have written, not little. 2. In the reign of the Soviets we knew less about other republics. After the collapse of that empire our relationship with Tajikistan improved, and visits were strengthened. Had the relationship to Kazakhstan – without taking any historical accounts into consideration – been influenced by any special communications and occasions? Tajikistan and Tajiks are themselves Iranian and their language is Persian and between these two countries there are no problems. If there are some complications it has to do with politics, but I myself have no relations and interference to it. Kazakhstan is a great and vast country, so my beloved Iran shares with it a common waterfront property which is the Caspian Sea. Kazakhstan is one of these countries under its subterrestrial there are all elements of the “periodic table”. To be brief, here lies the wealth of the earth: gas, gold, copper and oil. All the global richness is to be finding here. Iran’s relation to Kazakhstan began from the very time on, as the latter country got its independence. Maybe, the first country who recognized officially the independence of Kazakhstan was the Islamic Republic of Iran. Now, the number plates of the Iranian embassy’s cars began with the digits 002, to my mind it has to be 001. Kazakhstan is a spacious country. Parts of Kazakhstan were in the history under the reign of Iranian empire(s), especially the southern part of it. Just have a closer look, in the culture and civilization of Iran or the Persian literature, one encounter many times with the notion of “زارط”. That’s indeed the “زارط” which is often mentioned in the Persian poetry. 14 Interviews “Dasht-e qabchaq” is also a Persian term, the word “dasht” means in Kazakhi language “del-e”. Iranians had lifelong relations with Central Asia, in general, and in particular with Kazakhstan. But, Iranian culture geographical boundaries end not within the geographical limits of Central Asian countries. There lived nomads, Scythes. Not few archeological findings indicate that the Scythian nomads lived here for a long time. In Central Asia, in the Middle Ages, the Persian language was widespread here. Predominantly after the Samanian rule as Persian was the language of the region, and Iranian culture was at its peak. Persian was a language with which even Turkish and Mongolian rulers were proud to express themselves- it was also a case of pride knowing Persian and making Persian poetry with it. In this country there are certainly many evidences of Iranian culture. For instance, you can find a great deal of Persian words in the language of Kazakh’s people. Today, they express “dar-e-khaneh” which is the Persian word of “darou-khaneh”. Furthermore, they state not “koocheh” but “koosheh” or “avaa-daan-i” which is correctly “abadan-i” and has the meaning of region or area here. In the mid of Kazakhs’ (language) there are thousands of Persian words and thousands of Iranian names. Even names of Persian myths like “Rostam”, “Esfandyar” or “Bijan” which was definitely in common among Kazakhs, and that is the best “pledge of friendship” of ancient activities/interactions of this region and its folks. In contemporary Iran we have correspondingly Turkish words in the Persian language, like “khanom” and “aghaa” which have Mongolian roots. In Samarkand and Tajikistan they pronounce “aghaa” as “akaa”. In the languages of Central Asia many words are of Iranian or Arabic origin which came up through the Persian language on the surface. For example, the notions of the five time prayer are all Persian: Namaz-e bamdad, namaz-e pishin, namaz-e degar, namaz-e sham and namaze khoftan. Five names which are totally Persian. Even now, in Central Asian countries, intention of the prayer and prayer for the dead are all in Persian language. The names of the single days in a week are in 15 Safar Abdullah fact in Persian. If you are familiar with the Turkish literature of Turkish people of Central Asia you will discover in the language and literature of them hundreds of compositions and phrases, and thousands of Iranian words which were used. For one, if you read a poem of the Middle Ages in the Turkish language it has hundreds of Persian compositions and properly in the Uzbek language: لیلی رس زلف شانه می کرد مجنون ُدر اشک دانه می کرد. In the Middle Ages it was interpreted in Uzbek language as: لَیلی رس زلف شانه ای دور مجنون در اشک دانه ای دور. Not only the literature in Central Asia but similarly the architecture has its roots in the Iranian architecture. Sogdian people played an essential role in the Middle Ages and even prior to Islam: Cities and all Caravansaries in the Silk Road were built by Sogdians. Nevertheless, at the frontier of China and Kazakhstan there is a city called “Jirkint” which is a Persian name, and is correctly to be called as “Yarkand”. Yarkand has the same shape as a denomination or word like “Tashkent” or “Samarkand” or “Panjkand”, and so on. People or folks of Turkish speakers of this region and Persian speakers of Iran had close ties with each other, and they even did business. They gave things to each other, and received other things from the counterpart. The contemporary important topic is that Iran has to tighten and to strengthen its cultural affairs with Kazakhstan; at least Iran has to conduct more scientific investigations to trace back its own cultural footprints to/from here. An elementary example is the library of “Abu Reyhan-e Birun-i” in Uzbekistan where you can find 43000 handwritten manuscripts of which 39000 are in Persian, and 4000 of them in other languages. Or in the city of Almaty where I have categorized the handwritten manuscripts with Dr. Kamal al-Dini, we have discovered some of them which are rare on global level. There are two books of “Abdul-Rah- 16 Interviews man Jam-i” which were published as hardcover in Balkh and found a/their way to Central Asia. Another book of him is that of “Tohfe al- Ahrar” (English: Seven Thrones) which must be published 23 years before the dead of Jam-i, and I eventually believe Jam-i himself saw the book. There is no doubt about it. 3. Taking these historical facts you have revealed into consideration and not to forget the breakoff between the countries in the region, in any case, to learn Persian one has to have a good reason. To make you aware, in the war of the US-Americans against Iraq learning Arabic amplified. So, war was one cause of opening up language schools and delivering the occasion for prospective learners of Arabic. Thus, after the collapse of the Soviets what was the key objective to learn the Persian language in Kazakhstan? I am in favor of freedom, friendship, brotherhood, coexistence among neighbors, but not war! In Kazakhstan teaching Persian should be counted as important, and this is known seriously by Kazakh intellectuals. First, approximately 90–95 % of the first-hand sources, which are about Kazakhs and the Turkish folks of Central Asia in the Middle Ages, are written in Persian. Without Persian sources they can’t find anything else about Turkish and Mongolian People in Central Asia. The way I see it, it is almost certainly all Mongolian and Turkish Khans and rulers had Persophone secretaries and ministries, or as they put it, they had always one “Tajik” historian who was capable to speak Persian. It was the Persians under the Turkish or Mongolian rule who wrote books for them in Persian. By way of example, from the book of “Javam-e al-Tarikh” to “Tarikh-e Jahangosh-a” of Joveyn-I, and many other hundred books, these are all written in Persian. Therefore, if these people are inclined to know more about their own countries, to know more about themselves and to trace back their roots, there is no other way than to learn Persian. This view should be in the same time a kind of motivation for them to get these facts in their conscience. 17 Safar Abdullah The next point is, the better the relations and connections between the region and Kazakhstan are, the better is the teaching and process of learning of the Persian language. It is for sure, every graduate of a university is up to work somewhere, and in the case graduates aren’t employed, requests are going to shrink. Today, one of the reasons why many people learn the Chinese or Korean language is that hundreds of companies are settled here which are in the need of collaborators who speak their language. Their payment is not bad. More important than that is the obvious fact that Chinese and Korean companies are funding our students of the “Ablai Khan University of International Relations and World Languages” with scholarships. These companies pay for scholarships around 5 to 10 students, every year. In fact, the students undersign a contract in which they pledge to repay the amount they have received during their studies. Another example is Turkey. The contemporary Turkophones – who lost their ancient script - have fewer opportunities to study their culture: They don’t know the Persian-Arabic script and theirs‘ became Latin (in the 20th century). But because many companies of Turkey are working here, and Turks in general are supporting much, they pay not few scholarships and other relevant funding’s for the students and as well scholars, every year. At least, Turkish states responsible ask students and academics about their salary. If someone is responding 500 Dollar, the officials from Turkey offer: We add 500 Dollar more to your salary to improve your scholarship. But beside economical topics, cultural relations are of extreme importance, until today. Many people attended my classes for the sake of learning Persian, and they were indeed admirers of Iranian literature. Though, we Iranians are not much promoting for our literature and language like it should be the case. There‘s nothing else for it but to state, we should do more to champion Persian literature and language and this is the only way to aid. 18 Interviews 4. My next question refers to the status of Persian language in the higher education system of the universities of Kazakhstan. How is its status quo effectively and what about its progress or decline? Much to my regret, I should bear in our mind that initially there were reasons and causes that people should be attending classes to study Persian. The reason behind it was Mehdi Sana-i who was responsible for cultural issues of the Iranian embassy. He went to the local university and had held talks; at least, Persian studies were then available. Subsequently, in the cultural section of the Iranian embassy, 150 to 200 students followed Persian language studies. Mister Sana-i invited the best scholars to teach students. He invited me, too, to lecture there. They brought books for us. The deputy of the foreign affairs visited us. They had a budget for purchasing countless books. In five phases they bought a thousand books for universities and institutions of “Eastern Studies”, and distributed it as gifts. God save the father of Mr. Sadegh Kharaz-i who got involved with sourcing the books, and we’re profiting from that initiatives, until today. It is a long time since we haven’t received any books from Iran. The cultural section of the Iranian embassy had dictionaries like the Persian-Russian, or vice versa, and students were able to purchase it, but today we even lack of that. 5. Without the commitment of Iran what would be the condition of the Persian language in the universities of Kazakhstan? In Kazakhstan, universities – except of some national universities – are going to be privatized. In the frame of being “denationalized” the costs are rising due to the fact tuition fees should be paid, likewise, in many other countries in our time. Students have then to pay between 30.000 and 40.000 Dollar, every year. Many of the students have not the possibility to pay it. There were times in which 7 to 8 Persian classes were taught in universities here, but all of them are non-existent, 19 Safar Abdullah today. In the cities of Kazakhstan like Turkestan, Taraz, and Astana and in some universities of Almaty, Persian was a subject of teaching. Today, Persian language as an important subject of teaching is only established in the “University of Ablai Khan” and in the national university; in two universities, and that‘s it. Some students study Persian as a second or third language. But unfortunately they learn less the core of it: Persian as a language. A change is required from Iran as a responsible country to take serious actions for improving the status quo. Iranian officials may talk with the education ministry (of Kazakhstan) and other important counterparts, to draw up a contract to invite Iranian students to here to study the Russian or the Kazakh language. It is possible within the parameters of future collaborations between Iran and Kazakhstan that Kazakh language is going to achieve importance for Iran. The Russian language is one of the languages of Kazakhstan. In the case, if Russian should be studied successfully, Iran might then be in the position to launch a language program – in my university for example which is competent in language studies – to provide the opportunity to be funded and to study Persian language. In particular, I think it is necessary for upcoming language instructors who study Persian language to be well-prepared in an “omnipotent” atmosphere to get close to the language itself: for a better teaching. 6. How is the situation, in the period of training? Our university provides graduate programs of B. A., M. A., and the postgraduate program of Ph.D. The classes are not short in time, they should study four years the Persian language, but a minor part of its curricula consists Persian literature what I have criticized through my articles. Unfortunately, one of the calamities is that in our education system we follow a “tradition” of providing fewer courses in literature. In general, literature is taught 20 to 22 hours (per month). You know as well, that Persian literature with its historical credentials and rich 20 Interviews texts are hard to understand in 22 hours, monthly. But, to be honest, these shortcomings are our own fault. In Kazakhstan the issue of language and education system should be solved. Look, we had an education system since the Soviet time; the scientific and the proper educational system were emulated from Germany and Soviet-Russia. Shortly after, both educational systems disappeared, instead an American or let’s say English system of education is dominating us, now. This situation is not much healthy. Our people are in the process, to fall in oblivion, using the “old” Soviet education system still as a tool of learning, but meanwhile they didn’t just learn the “new” English one. 7. At present, how many students do you count at your university? In our university we have about 10–15 students who are pursuing the studies of Persian language, and I hope their figure will rise. I teach this number of students, but the total number of all students is 40. It is really little. We lack the first and the third year. One can observe the same condition for the national universities. Students just plunge into the university, do exams, and subsequently they leave it. If students aren’t funded for their studies they search for other study programs with funding’s. 8. How and from where they should be funded? By some means or other, they should be supported by the government of Kazakhstan, or let’s say some companies. According to that, students who study European languages in our university are financed by European and Asian companies like China, South Korea and Turkey. Arabs exert a dominant influence here, now. Plenty of Arab countries have permanent cultural missions here, among them, the Egyptian one is the most active. In general, Arab countries take an active part in comparison to Iran; they distribute frequently books and therefore they have effectively more students. 21 Safar Abdullah 9. With all these shortcomings you have counted, you know as well Iran has noticed that conditions, and finally decided to found the “Cultural Foundation of Saadi” in Iran to champion more the Persian language and literature. It is a new initiative and had in the beginning of its activities financial difficulties. According to its charter it has foreseen to promote the teaching of the Persian language and literature in the countries of the region. What are your expectations, and that of your recommendations? For years, we hear about the “Cultural Foundation of Saadi”, but I don’t know what have been their real efforts in the region. Until this moment, I learned little about the instruction/lecture of Persian language in the region. Or, is it like in the past, as it was in the hands of the cultural sections of the Iranian embassies, in foreign countries? Again, I have to lament. As a matter of fact, in the last years in the cultural sections of Iranian embassies employees in high positions in charge lack enough education of Iranian culture. I just tell you something from a real case. Recently, consultants from Iran came to Kazakhstan. They pronounced from a “Sublime Port” that the Persian language isn’t only that of Iranian alone, but it belongs impartially to “Rudaki Samarkand-i”, “Maulana Rumi” and “Nezami Ganjavi”. However, I responded to him in place. At the very next day the local daily newspapers of Kazakhstan misused this statement of the Iranian official. They wrote “the cultural consultants of Iran confessed these poets are not Iranians”. That was much painful to me. 10. I assume, exactly because of these reasons the “Cultural Foundation of Saadi” was established. The “Cultural Foundation of Saadi” is a sign of hope. I believe, Dr. Haddad-Adel who is a sophisticated director has an eye on the issues, so the cultural activities should be similar to that of the “Goethe-Institute”. In few words, they come to here and open up their office, they 22 Interviews have deputies, the deputy’s job is to spread the German language, and he/she is investigating on every relevant issue concerning Germans. German language, culture and its civilization experience an upgrade. You know as well, a lot of Germans do live here, who were deported during the war to Kazakhstan by Stalin. My view is this; the “Cultural Foundation of Saadi” should become the best one in its category to disseminate Persian language, culture and literature. It can accomplish many things. In addition, it can offer teaching of Persian language with the collaboration of the Kazakh government and organizations affiliated to it. Everyone and every corner of this country should be taken in focus for that task. Over and above, they should provide tools for studies. If, necessary they must send language instructors/lecturers. If they can’t pay for the costs to fund students to travel to Iran, they should bring for teaching causes language instructors to Kazakhstan. Maybe if it is indispensable for future language teachers, instructors and coaches, they must get the opportunity to stay for a short while in Iran. The major reason is easy to retrace, to learn a language in an “environment of itself ” is the best case, and the “Cultural Foundation of Saadi” can perform well in this way. The most important point with the “Cultural Foundation of Saadi” is their ability to invite scholars from Iran, or help local researchers to trace back the paths of Iranian culture, impact of Iranian literature, handwritten documents, and Iranian architecture. All of these I have specified as Iranian should be studied here and in the next step it’ll be of worth to be published in Iran. 11. The main topic is the demand and supply, sometimes some people are interested to learn the Persian language but there are no opportunities, and vice versa. What is your suggestion to keep this relation balanced? To keep the balance between offer and acceptance, some literature research is of paramount importance to know more about our aim. 23 Safar Abdullah One should team up with the interrelated institutions. I consider practically, it is possible to convey Persian language in Kazakh schools like in the past as it was taught as a foreign language. With all due respect, I still think that in the long run Iran can strengthen its economic ties to Kazakhstan. Kazakhstan is one of the richest countries and I’m sure it is attracted to cooperate (with Iran) in the “field” of the Caspian Sea, the gas and the oil industry. Beyond that, you can find the best wheat in the world in Kazakhstan, Iran as a potential costumer has a trustworthy resource of its national consumption. In our time, they import apples from Israel and stuff like that from other remote countries like China, so it would be easier to import fruits from Iran to Kazakhstan, for example. Iran has the ability, possibility and capacity to do many things here. 12. I know, you spend the most of your academic life with the journal of “Iran-Nameh”. This journal is for observers, who follow the actualities of the Persian language beyond Iran’s political border, a well-known source. Please, tell us about the recent activities of this journal. This journal is distributed to all post-Soviet countries. I remark, to gather many Russian speakers around it and I receive regularly letters from its readers. In the case of this journal I succeeded to allure the best Iranian scholars or Iranists to send to me their papers or articles which aren’t nevertheless published in any other journals. Many of the articles I do translate and publish in the Russian language, and my major goal is to introduce Iran in an impartial and omnipotent way. The beautiful face of Iran is hidden by the false news outlets of the West. In my journal, I have clarified, discussed and offered answers about many “assaults” on Iran and Iranian culture. As you know a movie like “300” was produced. I myself, asked Prof. Akbar Tarson who held a professorship at the University of Pennsylvania to write a serious article about the production of this film. He wrote the request- 24 Interviews ed article and I published it in my journal. After the publication, I received about 10 letters in which the people told me it was the best response vis-à-vis the Hollywood movie. I intend to talk with every researcher who shares the same ideas as mine, thus, I invite them to write an article for my journal. Or sometimes I write a response and I demand of them if they are not satisfied with a topic and have some critics they should offer their viewpoints in an article to be published in “Iran-Nameh”. This journal was really successful. It was published after 2007 in another shape, it consists of more than 400 pages. In the last two years because of economic reasons I couldn’t continue with my work. I have asked for the financial support from the “Association of Culture and Islamic Relations”, and they reacted positive about my demand. At the end of this story, we continued and published a number of journals, and we handed it to the cultural section of here without any further reaction. Currently, I am doing almost all relevant activities of the journal on my own. I type, do proofreading, and lastly I send it to Iran for publication. The reason to collaborate with Iran is that through Iran and all other consultation sections we have the opportunity to send it to other places. In the first year, our collaboration was good, so in the upcoming years it was published with delay. I went to the institution to meet Mr. Qahreman Soleymani to ask him for more aid, at least, to continue with this journal. In the same sense, I requested firmly from the “Cultural Foundation of Saadi” to allocate the journal, with all rights reserved, to them. Finally, the process should find its final place for continuation in Iran. I took the responsibility for all its particular “do’s and dons” for the sake of the reason the journal shouldn’t stop working. I prepared 30 editions of this journal which I love alike my own children. In contrary of the expectations of some people, I have gained little; it was a big disadvantage since I lost my nerves. Nonetheless, it is a very important work. 25 Safar Abdullah 13. We hope the celebration of your 60th birthday, the upcoming Iranian studies conference and the Persian language per se should be a noble reason for strengthening the ties to fulfill our goal in its very direction: to supply which triggers then the demand. You as a Tajik, living in Kazakhstan and being originally from Samarkand, have worked much on behalf of Iran. If you have a last word, please, feel free to express it. My last word is that we live with Iran’s name, with the remembrance of Iran, and we intend to proceed with Iran’s name. Personally, Iran for me is everything. For me, nothing than the Persian language is saintly. Nothing is above my beloved Iran. In fact, if there’s no Iran, therefore I’m not alive. Undoubtedly, if we intend to maintain an Iran with virtue, norms and values we have to work for the dissemination of the Persian language, in the future, and the reactivation of what we have lost, in its past. Our efforts have to be serious and sustainable, so world citizens could coexist with us and be grateful to us. Our culture is not less worth than any other culture and country. Our culture is the one of comprehension and mind; in former times it helped the world for a better understanding of the humankind. I think, a poet like Rumi, who is globally well known and whose “Masnav-i” is translated in many languages, and moreover, Khayyam, who is a continuation of wisdom from the very past to our age and is published in every global corner, makes me really proud. Why we shouldn’t be proud? These poets encourage us to reflect. In conclusion, if an individual thinks, receives certainly ideas through these mentioned poets. Iran’s tomorrow is in our hand, we should act in a way to embrace the prodigious name of Iran. 26 Interviews 14. Thank you very much. Next time, I will say with conviction “happy birthday to you”. Hopefully, prior to your 70th birthday you are going to achieve all your goals, which are in our favor, too. Thank you so much. I appreciate you have brought to me the generous message of Dr. Haddad-Adel, please, thank him, too. I appreciate the visit and collaborations of many others who came and honored me, in these uneasy days. End. 27 Safar Abdullah 29 2. Karimi Hakkak 1. Prof. Karimi-Hakkak, you have contributed for the last four decades a lot to Persian literature, its history and its current state. What has been your real motivation and interest to study and investigate Persian literature? In a great majority of academic careers devoted to researching the human past the ultimate motivation is, or ought to be, the search for truth; I would like to think that this has been true in my career as well. I sincerely have come to believe that in researching the rich, diverse and glorious tradition of literature in the Persian language, we face cases of falsehoods, half-truths and distortions that stand in need of correction in light of objective academic research and I have begun to do that in my own way. 1.2. You are by descent from Mashhad. There is a saying from “Malek ol-Shoara Bahar” that “Khorasan is here, where the speech is not much easy”. Are there any connections between your descent as Mashhad-i (social and intellectual environment) and your interest to literature? This is one often repeated assumption that some people make with conviction and believe with zeal, but which, in my estimation, has little connection to the truth. I happen to have been born in Mashhad, the city that once, under the name of Tus, was one of the centers of literary production in the vast province of Khorasan. However, to say that people from Mashhad have a higher aptitude for Persian literature or are in a privileged position when it comes to literary production is false and unscientific on the face of it, and divisive besides. Bahar was one of many Iranian nationalists of early twentieth century who tried to appropriate the shared heritage of literature an international language called Persian in the name of the modern country of Iran and, within that, to assign the lion’s share to the place which had given him birth. However, the truth is that, as we know it today, the modern country of Iran is not the only site of literary production in that language and has no privileged claim to the heritage we call Persian literature. By extension, the city we call Mashhad has no special position in the current configuration of literary productivity in the Persian-speaking world. The republic of letters is not a geographical entity with bold borders and Persian literature belongs to all those who read it, understand it and enjoy it, no matter where they were born or which country’s passport they carry in their pockets. 1.3 Next to Mashhad is Neishabur in the west and Herat in the east (nowadays in Afghanistan). I remind myself you have said in a VOA interview you have traveled during your school vacations several times to the ancient city of Herat – which is known as the “Pearl of Khorasan”. To be honest fewer people are interested in travelling to Afghanistan. What was your interest to travel to Herat and what did you do there? Did any contacts between you and old good friends from that time remain? It is true that many modern Iranians of my generation were oriented to travel to European capitals like London and Paris; I did that too, because it was the predominant orientation in Iran as I was growing up. In my case, however, an early interest in Persian literature also took me to cities like Neishabur (which was my mother’s birthplace) 30 Interviews or Herat (because I knew Khajeh Abdollah Ansari was from that city and was buried there and because I had read about the Baysonqori court there in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries); I am happy that I was different from my peers in that I looked both directions, rather than having my eyes fixed on the Western world only. It is also true that, for many centuries, the vast province of Khorasan, in which Herat and Neishabur were important centers of culture and civilization, was one of the most important hubs of literary productivity. None of that, however, privileges a modern Iranian or Afghan in any way. The best way to pay tribute to these wonderful cities is to read about them and read the works of Khayyam, Attar, Khajeh Abdollah Ansari and others who graced those urban areas with their imaginative writings. Similarly, the most appropriate way we can express our appreciation of the poets of Fars is to read Sa’di and Hafez and other great poets who picked up the torch of Persian poetry after Khorasan’s devastation in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries. Again, let’s remember that neither a Herati person with no interest in Ansari’s charming prayer poems or his wonderful book on Sufism, Tabaqat as-Sufiyyeh, nor a Briton living in Stratford who has not read a line of Shakespeare are in a privileged position vis-à-vis these great literary figures, just because they were born and live in the same cities. 2. Contemporary people think Iran in its current shape existed since ages. We know that the Iranian nation-state comes up after many conflicts, especially in the Safavid reign and then at the time of the Qajars, and that today’s Iran was at least the result of many territorial partitions. What is your opinion when it comes to the Persian language in relation to power and politics? I am not sure about the relationship between the two parts of your question. Iran is a territorial concept, a land, a country and a nationstate; a realm that has always had people with different languages. The Persian language is a language that has been spoken by many peoples: 31 Karimi Hakkak Iranians, Afghans, Tajiks, and others. For various reasons, however, this language has demonstrated its tremendous durability and amazingly wide appeal to a vast majority of its speakers, so much so that, even people who have lived their daily lives in a language other than Persian have used Persian when it comes to writings of diverse kinds. Modern Iranians may think that they – or their ancestors – are the sole makers and masters of this language, but that is part of the nationalistic frame of mind that they have inherited without questioning it. 2.1 The tie between Iran as a country and Persian as a national language is becoming in the 20th century quite tight. Observers like historians detect among Iranian citizens within the second Pahlavi Shah’s time a kind of nationalism. Do you think the Shah, his entourage and others like the intellectuals of that time, had a clue what would happen if they politicize through “Persian” the ancient Iranian history? To address the latter part of your question, the monarchical system of Iran in the 1960 and 70s probably did not understand the detrimental implications of its politicization of culture; it certainly did not have sufficient insight into the ramifications of the tight relationship that it was setting up between the country and the language. 2.2 If someone from the US, Australia, Egypt and Brazil is confronted with an Iranian they have the impression this man or woman is only a member of Persian ethnicity and stock. How should one overcome this misunderstanding of an international outlook that Iran and Iranians are the single country which championed Persian language, literature, etc.? The only way I know for overcoming this and other similar impediments is through efforts such as you are undertaking: education, 32 Interviews information-dissemination, and deeper and more sincere commitments to honesty. 2.3 The Iranian singer Fereydoon Farahi sang a national anthem (2010) in which he condemned a kind of chauvinism among Iranians. This song was never recognized by Iranians. Do you think a national anthem is to show off pride? I do not know this singer and have not heard the song you refer to. I know that Iran has never had a national anthem, such as may have been instituted, recognized or ratified by a parliamentary vote. 3. If we trace back history and approach the concept of Iran as a state it is difficult to find the name of Iran as an entity with a specified territory. Can you please say at what time “Iran” as a denomination comes up? Insofar as we know and recent research has been able to determine, in pre-Islamic times, the idea of Iran as a country and a political state did not exist until well into the Sasanian Empire. Then, after the Sasanian defeat at Qadesiyyeh, the land of Iran is reduced to a province, albeit a very important one, within an expanding Islamic empire. It was also the land where most of the people that the Arab overlords called the Ajam lived, gradually developing and adapting the Persian language (what in scholarship we still refer to as Neo-Persian) as the most cherished part of their civilizational heritage and instrument of aesthetic expression. None of the dynasties that ruled over all or part of the land, however, ruled in the name of Iran, until well into the fifteenth century at the courts of the Ilkhanids. It is with rise of the Safavid Dynasty in the 16th century that Iran once again becomes a nation-state, which is a distinct and distinguishable political entity in its own right, with more or less a unified sense of itself. 33 Karimi Hakkak 3.1 Western European civilizations were at the onset of modern age rich with authors, musicians, poets, diplomats, linguists or politicians who romanticized the idea of Persia and Persian to criticize their own state of being – even the founders of the USA read about the concept of the Achamenid Empire as a kind of archetype. Since then over the last two or three centuries the discourse has changed. Novelists of the 20th century like Sadeq Hedayat did not accept Iran’s being a predominantly Islamic society and country. With which measures should a young novelist – say from Mashhad, for instance – approach the ouvrage of Hedayat in the 21st century today? Over the past two centuries or so, many Europeans and Americans have romanticized several Oriental cultures and religions, including Islam, Hinduism and Buddhism and ancient civilizations like Chinese, Indian or Iranian. Whatever else Sadeq Hedayat may have been, he was also a crusading ideologue and chauvinist Iranian who, in many of his works, allowed the hatred of Islam and Arabs to poison his imagination. As far as I am concerned, this is an unfortunate, if somewhat understandable fact of his life, but it is demonstrably true and all you have to do is read his works to see and be repulsed by it. 3.2 Is literature in general, and the Persian example in particular, a suitable “gateway” to approach values of human rights, liberty, justice and tolerance? We certainly have ample examples of literary works having a corrective, progressive effect on society, in terms of raising consciousness, giving rise to social movements, or changing attitudes, opinions, or even laws. In Persian literature, the tradition of advice (pand va andarz) has moderated human behavior in countless instances, and, when it comes to the emergence and evolution of Islamic mysticism, at least 34 Interviews up until the Safavid times, Persian literature has altered human conceptions of God, even turning the paradigm of “fearing God” into that of “loving God”. So, we certainly can point, with justified pride, to numerous instances where literature has benefited human beings in numerous ways. However, this does not mean that literature is always – and inherently – beneficial; in fact, we can say that many times the communicative power and influence of poetry or literature has been harnessed to instigate negative emotions and/or hateful actions, and we can cite many instances of that as well. The upshot of it all is that, neither literature, nor even language, are in themselves good or bad; it is the ideas we communicate through these vehicles that may be beneficial or harmful, producing feelings of love and caring as well as spiteful hatred. 3.3 Has Persian poetry still the potency and charisma to express values, norms, tolerance, justice, liberty in comparison to ages before as it was influential and the exclusive agent to introduce, to criticize and to express things? Today, more than at any time in the past, the Persian language has the capacity for propagating the truth of the human condition. It is not the language or the poetry that is defective or wanting, but the mind of the users who can use or abuse a language and a poetic tradition and take it in any direction it may wish, positive or negative, as explained above. 4. If students of social science, ordinary Iranians or even Iranian scholars are asked where the Iranian Plateau is you are going to be surprised by their answers as it happened countless times to me! You would think what went wrong with the contemporary understanding of the concept of “Iran and Iran-zamin”? In scientific research of a quantitative nature, it is always useful to explore why something – precisely what, somebody should ask – may 35 Karimi Hakkak have gone wrong in the past. However, we all need to remain mindful of the fact that “observed impressions”, expressed in statements like “it happened countless times to me” may not prove or disprove larger claims such as contemporary understanding of the concept of “Iran and Iran-zamin”. 4.1 Referring to the last question, does literature play a minor or a major role of transmitting Iranian readership about their past, culture, shape or similar cases? We – or more precisely I – don’t know, because I have not seen any scientifically reliable research conducted on these issues. 4.2 Shahnameh as an epic ouvrage is the collective memory of Iran – if you want. In Tajikistan, it seems to be really popular and is valued as a native source about their own past as part of “Iran and Iran-zamin”. In Afghanistan within Persians from Herat, Balkh, Ghazni, Bamyan, Badakhshan or Kabul it has more or less its posture. Have you ever made any experiences concerning the importance it has among these three countries? No, I never made any experiments – or had “experiences” – of this kind! I have written and spoken about the Shahnameh extensively, but not with the anthropological approach that you seem to foreground here. 5. Iran is today politically separated from lands and people with which it has been united through the centuries. In this sense it is not facile to remind Iranians, Persians from Afghanistan, Tajiks from Tajikistan and Uzbekistan or Persians from Pakistan that they shared for centuries a common culture based on the Persian language and its literature. Is the concept of “Persianate” or “Persianate World” of Marshall Hodgson practical to re-introduce “Persian” and the past? 36 Interviews There still is a Persianate world; it consists of Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan, plus a number of Central Asian and Western Chinese cities, plus the huge Persian-speaking diaspora all over the world. The task ahead of us, I think, is to stop thinking about – or imagine – the political union that never was, but strengthen our cultural give-andtake and based on the shared heritage of the Persian language and its glorious literature. 5.1 The account of Persian as a language through its literature is coined through three genres: Khorasani, Iraqi and Hendi (Indian). According to this division, the corresponding lands of it are today divided and subdivided in nation-states with clear borderlines such as Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Pakistan and Greater India. How important is it to know this three genres? The phrases you have cited, Khorasan-i, Iraq-i and Hend-i, are all unfortunate misnomers coined by an Iranian nationalist called Mohammad- Taghi Bahar. The more correct and historically accurate way of speaking about the history of Persian poetry is to point out its continuous development in a changing Persianate World, supported by generation upon generation of poets and patrons, as well as critics and readers who were ethnically and religiously diverse. We have had ethnically Turkic and Turkish poets writing Persian poetry for Persian, Turkic or Indian patrons; we have had Muslim kings, Amirs and viziers, both Shia and Sunni, supporting Hindu, Buddhist or Muslim poets, and we have had readers the world over who have read and admired poetry in the Persian language even though they may not have been able to converse in the Persian language themselves. Again, let me reiterate the Republic of Persian literature is not a territory subdivided by boundaries and ethnic identities; it is a global republic of the human imagination. 37 Karimi Hakkak 5.2 In many ways contemporary Iran claims to be the last heir of a rich cultural heritage. Do you think it is not better to re-write the history of “Iran and Iran-zamin” with experts – who should fulfill virtues like being in their approach and judgement impartial? What I think you mean is “some contemporary citizens of the modern country of Iran claim” to be heirs to that cultural heritage, and I say: their claim is invalid. They may have some claim to that inheritance, but only if they can prove that they know it, cherish it, and use it – and use it wisely. Nobody is “the last heir” to anything in human heritage because humanity has not ended and the final word of the world or about the world has yet to be spoken. 5.3 At the renowned book fair in Frankfurt am Main, I talked once with people from Persian descent from Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Pakistan, India and Iraq. Our topic was Shahnameh. We noticed that there is no movie on the tales of Shahnameh. Why does nobody and especially Iran does not act in this way to narrate stories of Shahnameh in a film or serials? I have no idea why. 5.4 Collective memories are hints to have better understanding about other peoples’ knowledge on an issue. Unfortunately, I noticed it is taken for granted in the three countries where Persian is national language – Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan – that these languages are also disconnected ones. What are your experiences in this regard? I think that if political and intellectual leaders in the countries you name put their minds together and come up with ways of highlighting and strengthening the cultural connections among the peoples, the gap you identify can be bridged within a generation or two. 38 Interviews 5.5 There is one poem on “Iran and Iran-zamin” from Ofran Badkahshani of Amsterdam. He has a poem “Man Iranam” (I am Iran), which is available on youtube. His poetry’s publication is of the same title. His publication and his scientific ouvrage is an avatar of his native country Afghanistan. Concerning Ofran’s historical approach, I would ask how much “Iran and Iran-zamin” can someone detect in contemporary Iran? If I understand it correctly, you are asking how much awareness exists, in today’s Iran, about the larger culture that connects all Persian-speakers to each other. If that is indeed your core question, I must say, I don’t think there is much – certainly not adequate – awareness, even though, at times, I too come across people, who show a lot of enthusiasm. 6. What are your suggestions to improve the perception for students to know impartially concepts about “Iran and Iran-zamin”? Keep on trying! Is there any other way? 6.1 The Goethe-University of Frankfurt am Main is noted for “Frankfurt School” in the subjects of philosophy, social philosophy and political theory. I myself encountered pundit Jürgen Habermas at the University of Frankfurt, and we talked about his stay in Iran. He saw among Iranians a huge interest in western philosophy, as he stated. I perceived really impartial students and scholars of the “Frankfurt School” who shared their findings and applied researches – when I asked or discussed with them. Immanuel Kant plays a pivotal role for “Frankfurt School”, as you know. I have never honestly experienced Germans claiming Immanuel Kant is their acquired property. If Immanuel Kant was an Iranian how would Iranians act according to our previous questions as we tried to find out what are the reasons of entitlements of cultural heritage? 39 Karimi Hakkak They probably act in an unseemly and arrogant way; that is in the nature of ignorance. Ignorance is arrogant because it is not aware that its true name is “ignorance”. All we can do is educate, educate, educate! Again, do you know of any other way? 6.2 The greatest contribution to Persian literature in the 20th century with worldwide respect was the ouvrage of Iqbal Lahori (1877–1938). If I would explain to someone why Iqbal is important for the representation of Persian literature in colonial era how should I produce an argument? Allow me to leave aside the question of who has made “the greatest contribution to Persian literature in the 20th century”. I agree that Iqbal is a very important Indo-Pakistani poet who produced seminally significant works in the Persian language. For my part, I would situate his importance in the context of the tension between our Persian heritage and our drive to modernize. Iqbal imagined the mystical tradition in Persian poetry as a dynamic force that could be revived and put to work for the renewal of what he imagined being “Eastern Cultures”. At the same time, he defined this imagined entity in a relationship of perpetual opposition with Western culture. There, I think, lies the core of his problem. He did not value – perhaps even did not comprehend – the constant interaction between the East and the East, the Orient of the Orientalists and the culture that he participated in while living and studying in Germany – as in the example of Goethe glorifying an imaginary Hafez – as a parable for cooperation and complementarity, rather than as the potential for the triumph of the East over the West. In the twenty-first century, this way of thinking, though not completely defeated and dead, is gradually giving way to more constructive models of interaction among culture clusters. 40 Interviews 7. You mentioned in your publications and talks often the late Ahmad Shamlu (1925–2000). He has not few readers who read Persian among ethnic Persians in Tajiksitan, Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, India, Iraq and Pakistan, as I experienced in conferences of Iranian studies. Do you think Shamlu is solely a national Iranian poet or was he much more a cosmopolitan by his habits? I gravitate toward the latter view. I think Shamlu was a modern Iranian poet who aspired to appropriate models of poetic creativity from contemporary European cultures, particularly that of French literature. At the same time, he maintained intellectual connections with the socialist thought of early twentieth century, or at least could not liberate himself from certain leanings in that thought-system, a system that had found its way into Iran through its manifestation in Stalinist communism. Like Iqbal, he too, is an example of the uneasy cohabitation of native and foreign tendencies, but that is a whole other story. 7.1 Mehdi Akhavan-Sales (1929–1990) highlighted in his ouvrage the notion of “Khorasan”. What was the aim of him? I am not sure what you are referring to; it would be good to open this statement up a little. Akhavan was from Khorasan, and like most other people, he felt an affection for the land that had nurtured him. However, I do not think that in his poetry he privileges Khorasan over and above other parts of Iran. If you consider his famous Qasida, titled “I Love You, Ancient Homeland”, which I have discussed and analyzed in one of my articles, you will see that his ultimate allegiance goes to the greater Iran, or what you call Iran-zamin, and not necessarily to any particular part of it. As far as we can determine his purpose in doing so, he may have been a nationalist, but not in any narrow sense, like valuing his native region over and above the rest of the country of which he was a citizen. 41 Karimi Hakkak 7.1.1 Where was and where is Mehdi’s geographical Khorasan today? Khorasan is now divided between Iran, Afghanistan and parts of Central Asia. However, I think you mean to explore the fate of the old region which, in academic parlance, we refer to as “The Greater Khorasan”. If so, that region no longer exists, since both political boundaries of the region and the realm of the Persian language have been altered over the past several centuries. In acknowledging this, we should be very careful not to nurture the sense of nostalgia that might lead to thoughts of the revival of an old territory that has been altered irretrievably. Changes of this kind happen all the time and all over the world, and the best we can do is acknowledge what the territory of that Greater Khorasan accomplished in the centuries that stretch from the fall of the Sasanian Dynasty to the devastations of the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries. 7.2 Khalilullah Khalili (1907–1987) of Kabul was a Persian poet. What is his importance for “Iran and Iran-zamin” today? I prefer to speak of Khalili’s importance as a twentieth century Persian poet nurtured by the great land of Afghanistan who made impressive contributions to the modernization of Persian poetry. Unfortunately, his importance as a modernizer has been misunderstood because he, like so many great poets of Iran before Nima Yushij, produced poetry that preserved the appearance of continuity, rather than signaling departures from the classical tradition. When and if critics and historians of Persian poetry begin to view modern Persian poetry in ways that do not highlight form over theme, structure, social imperatives, or other aspects of the poetic art, then Khalili’s value will be seen in more meaningful ways, perhaps equaling that of Dehkhoda, Bahar or Eshqi among Iran’s modern poets. 42 Interviews 7.3 In Tajikistan Loyeq Sherali (1941–2000) was one of the celebrated poets of 20th century. How is his reception for Iran? Loyeq Sherali was a great friend of mine. When I first visited Tajikistan in 1990 he asked me to appear on a television program which he hosted. I did and there, on his program, he asked me to comment on the state of poetry in Tajikistan. In my response, I likened his poetry to that of Akhavan in Iran and mentioned that I thought in comparison, Bozor Sobir’s poetry might be seen as closer to that of Shamlu. He was fascinated by the comparison and asked me to elaborate. I did, by saying that whereas his poetry, like that of Akhavan, had its roots in the local and national legend and lore, Sobir’s poetry attempted to reach a more cosmopolitan and universal audience. He said he took this as a compliment and observed that all poetry has to have its roots in the language of the people before attempting to appeal to wider audiences. I agreed but added that, having an organic life, poetry needs both tendencies, just as a tree needs both old roots and new leaves. He liked that comparison very much. The point I want to make here in connection with your question is twofold. First, that in transplanting the poetry of one culture to that of another social clime, say through the act of translation or in the case of Tajikistan and Iran in changing the language’s register from one variety of Persian to another, much more is lost of the poem’s roots in the linguistic and aesthetic local culture than of its leaves, that is its attempt to reach an audience removed from it by the language or culture and lore or the sociopolitical system that surrounds it. Therefore, in Iran Loyeq’s poetry may appeal more widely to those who value traditional aesthetic expression than those who value more modern aspects of a poem. The important thing is to realize that all cultures need both of these orientations for a poetic culture to thrive in it. 43 Karimi Hakkak 7.4 Qahar Asi (1956–1994) of Kabul wrote a poem in defense of the Persian language (Persian is our Heart – دل ماست پارسی). It was made into a song among Persian singers from Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan. Do you think that Qahar Asi is known in the Iranian intellectual, literature and poetry discourse? The bad news is that non-Iranian Persian poets are not recognized adequately by modern lovers of poetry in Iran. The good news is that this situation is changing rapidly. As modern Iranians begin to educate themselves to value poetry as much for its being an exquisite linguistic product as for its relevance as a national icon or emblem for this or that country then they will begin to understand and appreciate the poetry of Afghanistan and Tajikistan in general, and of course that of Qahar Asi’s as well. 8. Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Balkh-i or Rumi was a great poet. I taught in my Iran course my students Rumi like Hafez, Saadi, Rudaki, Khayyam and others were at the same time poets and philosophers. In German, you can call it easily in a single word “Dichterphilosoph”. Is this expression right if we call the “prophet of love” a poet and philosopher? I am not sure. The fact that the German word Dichterphilosoph encompasses the craft of the poet as well as the thoughts and ideas of a philosopher has little relevance to the way the relationship between poetry and philosophy has unfolded historically in Iran or in the Persianspeaking world. In the latter milieu clearly you come across philosophical musings or meditative poetry, such as in the works of the poets you mention above. However, in the end, philosophy is a systemic expression of ideas about the world as we know it and the place of the human creature in it that relates to an age or an epoch, while poetry, especially modern poetry, is more premised on that expression of overflowing feelings and emotions not bound by systemic con- 44 Interviews straints, and true only for the moment of expression, not for ever or even for a long duration of time. 8.1 Rumi is born as you know in contemporary Afghanistan and died in present-day Turkey. In between these two states you will find Iran. Who is the truthful heir of Rumi’s legacy? That question is philosophically impossible to determine and culturally divisive and harmful. Neither Iran, nor Afghanistan or Turkey existed as countries or sovereign states in 1207 when the man was born or in 1273 when he died. More importantly, he would not identify himself in terms of his relation to this or that country. He would probably say that he was a Sufi Muslim from the city of Balkh in the region of Khorasan who had moved to Konia in the territory of Rum. The readers who have followed the line of thinking I have charted throughout this interview know that very well by now. Only those who benefit in some way from dividing people of centuries past by terms that apply only to the people of today would still insist in putting the question in those terms. To reiterate what I have said before: Rumi was a poet who wrote in the Persian language, and he belongs primarily to those who understand this language and who read the glorious poetry he has offered to all humanity, preferably in the original Persian but at least through translations, version, renditions, etc.! 8.2 In comparison to Iran in Afghanistan there are few or no devotions of birthplaces of great thinkers, poets, philosophers, astrologists who thrived in the last centuries. Afghanistan is often declared as the capital of Muslim world, but if you see for instance the images of Abu-Rayhan Biruni or Jalal-ad-Din Rumi and many others the government seems not to value these great thinkers of Iranian and Islamic world. Why do they neglect such historical treasures? 45 Karimi Hakkak I don’t know, and I am not sure that what your question implies is actually happening, or if it is relevant or valid at all. 9. What are your personal and scientific hopes for the future of “Iran and Iran-zamin”? It is my personal hope that literary and cultural interaction among contemporary Persian-speaking countries of Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan – as well as certain other urban areas in Central Asia and Western China, such as Samarqand, Bukhara, Kashghar and Urumchi – would grow both quantitatively and qualitatively. I also hope that academics such as you clarify the concepts they work with in a way that would bring about more convergence among these linguistic cultures than divisions. 9.1 Do you have any suggestion for the institution of “Farhangestan” in Tehran? I do, and I have made many suggestions, but that is a totally different topic way outside the boundaries of this interview. 9.2 Iranian studies outside Iran are still capable to investigate issues related to “Iran and Iran-zamin” – even having a minor budget. In western countries we have many Iranians, also Persians of Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, Pakistan, India, Iraq and Tajikistan, who are wealthy. Taking this fact into consideration are “rich” Persians aware enough to help out scientific projects like Prof. Ehsan Yarshater’s “Encyclopedia Iranica”? There is a degree of awareness and it is increasing ever so slowly; but much more can and should be done to raise that awareness. 46 Interviews 10. Do you have any plans in mind for your next researches? Yes, I am laying the foundations for a multivolume research project tentatively titled “The History of Persian Poetry”, and it is being welcomed in some quarters, but I will have much more to say about this project in the near future than I do now. 10.1 Are you interested to teach one day in Iran, in Iran-zamin, in Samarkand, in Nishabur, in Herat, in those places where you have through the decades researched? I would love to, but I do not see it in the cards that have been handed to me! 10.2 Can you tell me if there’s someone who is in your field of scholarship a kind of upcoming “star” in Iranian studies? I’d rather not name names, but I do have high hopes for the up and coming crop of scholars in the field of Persian literary studies. Prof. Karimi-Hakkak thank you very much for your kindness and your invaluable time. You are most welcome. End. 47 Karimi Hakkak 49 3. Philipp Gerrit Kreyenbroek 1. Dear Prof. Kreyenbroek you are one of the first researchers of the previous century who continued to focus on Iranian religions in general and Zoroastrianism in particular. What was your motivation to study it? For my B. A. I studied Arabic, with Persian as a secondary subject. I seemed to have a natural affinity with Iranian people, whatever that might mean. In any case I wondered why the everyday atmosphere I experienced in Iran was so different from that of other Middle Eastern countries. I wondered if Zoroastrianism had something to do with it. I then met the Zoroastrian community in Tehran and was completely fascinated by this religion. 1.1 Have you been in some way influenced by the late Mary Boyce (1920–2006) who was an authority of Zoroastrianism? Mary Boyce was my doctoral supervisor and I have always admired her work very much. She certainly influenced me in many ways, although naturally I found new questions and new solutions as my own study of Zoroastrianism progressed. 1.2 As I talked to you, I come across you speak many languages of the east and the west. Please, tell us how you learned eastern languages and which similarities and which differences do they have? As a child I was always envious of friends who knew languages I couldn’t understand. My Jewish friends learned Hebrew, and my father bought me a teach-yourself book for modern Hebrew. Later on, while still at school, I tried to teach myself Arabic, which is closely related to Hebrew, and that was the first language I found difficult. Therefore, I wanted to learn it better and chose Arabic as my main subject when I went to university. Then came Persian, then Sanskrit and ancient Iranian languages, and so it went on. 2. There are still a lot of religions in “Iran and Iran-zamin” when one travels for example to the Kurdish regions, Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan. What is your view on religions in the western and central part of Asia of Iranian roots? Most of my academic work has been concerned with minority religions in the lands where ‘Iranian’ languages are spoken, especially Zoroastrianism, Yezidism and Yārsānism (the religion of the Ahl-e Haqq). These are important parts of the Iranian cultural heritage. 2.1 Since the latest developments and conflicts in the region of West Asia (2014) many observers are concerned about the real existence of native religions such as like Yezidism. What is your stance on that in terms of eliminating the Yezidi people and their cultural heritage? What IS (Islamic State) did amounted to the attempted genocide of the Yezidis of Sinjar, the heirs and guardians of an important Yezidi tradition. The immense cruelty of Da’esh has caused enormous prob- 50 Interviews lems for the Yezidis’ community as a whole: how does one deal with such horrors? However, the Yezidis are a tough people with a deeply held loyalty to their religion. There are signs that the community as a whole will rise to these challenges and come up with new solutions for survival. 2.2 How should we in the west understand the importance of Yezidism for us? The safety of every community, be it religious or ethnic, should be of supreme concern to us all. Furthermore, the Yezidis are the heirs of an ancient religious tradition. If they were to disappear, the world would be the poorer for it. 2.3 How should people and policymakers in the region of West Asia understand the importance of Yezidism and Yezidi people as neighbours? The Yezidi tradition is a key component of the cultural heritage and identity of the Kurdish people as a whole. 3. One of the great pillars of your oeuvre are minority religions among the Kurds. Please, introduce us briefly to it. As I said earlier, I am particularly interested in the minority religions of the region. I am currently working mostly on the Yāresān (ahl-e Haqq) of Kurdistan. Both Yārsānism and Yezidism contain elements of an ancient Iranian religious tradition, which survive in many of their customs and myths. I believe that these groups were not originally Zoroastrians, but go back to an ancient, independent religious tradition of the ‘Iranian’ type, i. e. to a Western-Iranian ‘sister-religion’ of Zoroastrianism. 51 Philipp Gerrit Kreyenbroek 3.1 Many people assume all Kurds have the same origin, and they share common habits, history or collective memory. In the same way people take Kurds as being separated in four and many other countries as ethnic minorities without a “genuine” culture. What does reality tell us about Kurdish daily life in the region of West Asia? The Kurds share a common language and in many ways a common culture. As you know, their lands have been divided up between a number of of modern states. In many cases, these states have tried to make Kurds conform to the dominant culture of the country they now belong to. In many cases the Kurds could not identify with those dominant cultures, which caused the governments in question to persecute Kurds and ban the expression of Kurdish identity. The past 100 years have proved that this can cause a lot of suffering among the Kurds, but so far it has not been effective in suppressing their cultural identity. Since the 1990s the Kurdish Regional Government in Northern Iraq now represents an autonomous Kurdish Region. In Turkey, on the other hand, the Kurds are once more the targets of government hostilities. 3.2 Kurdistan is a notion which is illegal and prohibited in countries where Kurds make up a huge part of the ethnic minority. Where does this fear come from and how is it justified? Words such as ‘Kurdistan’ are no longer suspect in most countries. The fear you refer to – which as far as I can see survives to a significant extent only in Turkey – may be caused partly by the fact that the majority group has violently persecuted the Kurds in the past and many fear reprisals. 3.3 Kurds are seen – if you will – as the heirs to the Medes. What is the historical connection between Medes and Kurds? 52 Interviews Both live(d) in roughly the same region and both speak/spoke an Iranian language. According to some linguists the Kurdish language does not descend directly from Median. 4. In the same sense when it comes to the birthplace of Zoroaster many people from contemporary Iran are confused due to the belief he is from the Azerbaijan region of Iran or the Kurdish region of Iran. We now know from the work of the late Richard Frye, a recent work by Touraj Daryaee, and many others that the Prophet in fact lived in present-day Balkh (Northern Afghanistan). Which evidences do we find really if one intend to trace back Zoroaster’s steps in Balkh? The Avesta itself only describes places in the eastern ‘Iranian’ region, and all indications suggest that Zarathustra belonged to an eastern Iranian people. Exactly where and when he lived we cannot say. 4.1 Is any reference in the Shahnameh given to Zoroaster, his tenets, his message, his birthplace, his lifetime, etc.? Yes, there is a passage devoted to “Zartosht”, which was probably the work of Daqiqi, and was incorporated into Ferdowsi’s work. 4.2 What do we know about Zoroaster’s followers today? There are several communities in Iran, India and in the diaspora. 5. In the “Iran and Iran-zamin” we find a lot of religions like Zoroastrianism, Zurvanism, Mandaeism, Manichaeism or Mazdakism. Quite a few religions, in fact. Does each of these religions bring a new message? 53 Philipp Gerrit Kreyenbroek Zurvanism and Mazdakism are not independent religions, they are just names people gave to two forms of Zoroastrianism. 6. Is the concept of “good vs. evil” really an Iranian invention since humankind knows the concept of religion(s)? I believe that Zarathustra was the first religious leader to make this antithesis central to his message and worldview. He explained the world as an arena for a fight between Good and Evil. Man’s responsibility is to choose Good over Evil, and thereby help to overcome Evil in the universe. This is the right ‘worldview’ (daena), and those who choose it belong to the ‘religion’ (daena) of Zarathustra. 7. In the Islamic age “Iran and Iran-zamin” played a crucial role. The Iranian civilization enriched Islam in the Abbasid era in Baghdad (8th-13th century) with its courts, scripts, thoughts, concepts and the “age of translation”. Scholars often forget to trace back the roots of the founders of Abbasid caliphate in Baghdad and here is the question: How do pre-Islamic culture influenced the kick-off of the “empire of wisdom” - I think for example about the “founding fathers” of the “house of wisdom” in Baghdad? As one of the great civilizations of the pre-Islamic Near and Middle East (West and Central Asia), Iranian culture strongly influenced early Islam. Under the early Abbasids we see a flourishing of Persian traditions and customs at court and elsewhere. 7.1 What did it mean to be “Persian” or “Iranian” in the Abbasid caliphate? As I said earlier, for a time Persian culture was very popular under the Abbasids, one or two Caliphs had Persian mothers. 54 Interviews 8. In Tajikistan there are many indications that this country with a great Persian legacy is seeks to recover its legacy – after regaining their national autonomy and the civil war in the 1990s. For instance, they name their streets, currency and newborn children after heroes and figures of Shahnameh. What is your judgement about this fact? The country is looking for its own identity and as they are Persianspeakers, naturally some people look at the Iranian cultural heritage for inspiration. But such interests are not necessarily very significant in the wider scheme of cultural developments in Tajikistan. We’ll have to wait and see how things develop there. 8.1 Tajikistanis are like many people proud of sharing a common culture as Iranians – in particular they hope to be recognised by especially Iranians from Iran and their neighbours from Afghanistan. Is this kind of creating an identity “healthy” and historically correct? Pelase see above. 9. Dear Prof. Kreyenbroek you are in the process to retire (2015). Please, tell us how you would look retrospectively at your own life, scholarship and the people you have guided through their exams, dissertations and scientific projects? I am now retired. On the whole I am very happy with the professional chances I have had and the people I have met along the way. 10. Since the years of 2000 I heard a lot of times among colleagues that the scholarship of Iranistik (English: Iranian Studies) in Germany in particular and Western countries in general is in 55 Philipp Gerrit Kreyenbroek danger. How important it is to have chairs of Iranistik in Germany and beyond? Of course, it is important for Iranian languages and cultures, including those of the Kurds, to be represented in Western Universities. Iranian Studies as such do not seem to be particularly endangered, but I am concerned about Kurdish Studies. Prof. Kreyenbroek thank you very much for your kindness and your invaluable time. End. 56 Interviews 57 4. Ali M. Ansari 1. Your entire ouvrages seems to me invaluable for a better understanding of Iran as it stepped in the age of modernity. As I visited your site Prof. Ansari I read your predominantly “research interests include the development of the State in Iran in the modern era, with a particular focus on nationalism, mythology and the use (and abuse) of history.” Please, explain to me what do you exactly mean if you are focusing on the “use and abuse” of Iranian modern history? Basically, my interests are focused on the ways and means with which history as a discipline has been used (and abused) in the service of politics and ideology. This is of course not unusual and you can find many cases in Europe and North America though perhaps not always as blatant as you may find it in Iran. But it seems to me that history is particularly contested and political in Iran, making for rich historiographical pickings as different political factions interpret history in their own particular interests, often explicitly so. 2. Furthermore, you are currently investigating the historiography of modern Iran. There is the view that Iran was partitioned by colonial masters in the 19th century as a perpetual “local empire”. Iranian intellectuals and historians initiated (in the modern age) a discourse in which they reinvented a new narrative maybe not to lose again parts of Iran due to their old and own “poor” understanding of history, civilization and concepts of power structure. Is it correctly to talk about a counter-narrative prospect of Iranian historians against outsiders, enemies, kings and warriors? I do not think this particular counter-narrative is anything new though in the twentieth century you have witnessed more explicit narratives emerging related to different strands of nationalist thought, leaning towards for example the Left and Islamism. All these tend to vent against the ‘other’, but this theme has long roots in Iranian historiography. 2.1 Did Iran become in the modern age indeed a nation? As we know, Iran has been since its heyday a multilingual or multiethnic entity. This all depends on what you understand by the term ‘nation’. I do not think it can ever be defined as a singular ‘ethnic’ nation, for the reasons you say but it has done reasonably well in defining itself as a specific cultural entity if less well in terms of civic nationalism which is what I think the early nationalists were trying to do. 2.2 Recently a german Iranist, Dr. Nölle-Karimi, from Vienna published a book “The Pearl in its Midst: Herat and the Mapping of Khorasan from the Fifteenth to the Nineteenth Centuries” at the “Österreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften”. What about Iran’s old people who is getting more and more in oblivion – if we think about Herat which is mentioned in the holy book of Avesta and since we know Iran it was always a native part of Iran? The borders of Iran, as with many other countries who aspire to be ‘nations’ have always changed. This is not something too unusual. 58 Interviews 3. You as a historian Prof. Ansari are quite critical about Iranian history narratives and takes. From your viewpoint one should learn a lesson that Iran’s existence, its borders and its former leaders should be put under a critical light. What do you think if I add to your discourse the notion of “Iranian culture sphere” which we call in German language “Iranischer Kulturraum” and in Persian language “Iran-zamin”? My criticism is really of those historians who either judge Iranian nationalism from an overtly political standpoint, with little comparative perspective. Often Iranian nationalists are for example criticized by a standard that few would be able to reach. At the same time, I am highly critical of ethnic-nationalists who seek to argue for an explicit unchanging continuity, a historical nonsense. 3.1 How would you through your experience as an Iranist specify “Iran-zamin”? Iran Zamin is simply the modern rendition of the Sasanian term, Iranshahr. Traditionally you may consider it the old empire of the Iranians, a political concept. I think today it can be better understood as the cultural sphere of influence that extends to Afghanistan, the Indus, the Euphrates and the Caucasus. Because of President Bush’s Global war on terror, of course, this imagined cultural community has become a real possibility in political terms and it is clear that some members of the current political elite are seeking to realize this opportunity. 3.2 Social scientist in general but Iranian people in particular forget if today a Persian from Afghanistan, a Tajik from Tajikistan and a Tajik from Uzbekistan, an Azari from Baku intend to read their history they have to fetch likely a book with a title “History of Iran”. Is this right? 59 Ali M. Ansari That is indicative of a lack of historical awareness and the rise of ‘ethnic’ nationalism in these areas. One enormous contradiction that you find is that social scientists applaud these local nationalisms as they condemn any sense of Iranian identity. 4. I think myself much about the fact why nowadays-Iranian nationals have among many others the talent to be uncritical about their history and accept what historians narrated them especially in the 20th century. How much Iran can one detect really in contemporary Iran? The problem here as I see it that Iranians enjoy history but few if any have developed that element of critical thinking that is pivotal to the development of an historical consciousness. Iranians enjoy myths (stories); they are less interested in the details of any argument or interpretation. A further problem arises because successive governments have not encouraged the study of Iranian history, certainly not modern history that as noted above, is regarded as too political. The irony is of course that the lack of a critical historical consciousness simply perpetuates the tendency to mythologize. 5. If Iranians condemn and at the same time complain on foreign influence on the partition of Iran as a local empire why there is less focus on its so-called brother states like Azerbaijan, Iraq, Afghanistan and Tajikistan with whom they share a “Persian” history? This is an interesting question but it probably reflects the relative absence of the study of regional and international history as a whole. It is not just that are few studies of regional states that share a common heritage; there are few systematic historical studies of any states and countries beyond the current borders of Iran. 60 Interviews 5.1 In your article “The Myth of ‘Perfidious Albion’: Anglo-Iranian Relations in Historical Perspective” you are rather focusing on the fact to what extent much Iranians feel to be harmed by outsiders. In the same way, Iranians themselves criticized with a satirical piece like “Dayee Jaan Napoleon” the sentiment that behind the curtain there should not always be a westerner who is planning something against Iran and Iranians. How should such habits be viewed correctly if a group of Iranians of the educated young generations is willing to overcome such obsolete images? The point I am trying to make here is that history has become too politicized. There is no doubt that at times British policy harmed Iranian interests. It was bound to be so when you consider that the interests did not always coincide. But any objective historical analysis would have to conclude that the Russians did as much if not more harm to Iran, so why are the Russians not held up to the same political standards as the British? Instead, today we see the Islamic Republic is acting as if Russia is a good friend and ally. This tells us that historical interpretation is subject to political expediency. 5.2 According to the previous question who is more responsible the outsider who invaded the “local empire”, the native former leaders who were too weak to defend their soil or the contemporary people of Iran who are less willing to judge with wisdom or impartiality on history? I tend to go with Ahmad Kasravi on this one and argue that the responsibility lies chiefly – though not exclusively – with the native leaders who failed to prevent such interventions through an inability to reform. 61 Ali M. Ansari 6. You teach at undergraduate level classes in which your approach is to have a look on Iran’s entry into modern age. As I clicked on your class “Persia in the 18th Century – 1722–1834 (The Age of the Warlords)” I was amazed to see a profound content of teaching. So what was the shape of Iran at that time? I want to know your approach towards Iran’s borderlines in its cardinal direction, its capital, leaders, and people. The 18th century interests me because it is largely omitted in most histories with people teaching the Safavids and then jumping to the Qajars. Nevertheless, it is the turmoil of the 18th C, which in many ways shaped the way in which modern Iran works and see itself in the world. This is the period for example when the Shia clergy became quite separate from the state, but also when the state itself became greatly weakened and had little or no time to recover before the Europeans arrived in strength. 6.1 Within the “local empire”, Iran had several “ostan” which was much like today’s provincial divisions and subdivisions. You are teaching “The fall of the Safavids and the era of Afghan rule”. What was the notion of Iran’s contemporary neighbor Afghanistan at the time of the Safavids? Who was at that time an Afghan? Were the Afghans not an Iranian eastern tribe? Yes, I do not use the term in relation to the modern state but more as a geographic and tribal distinction. 6.2 Outside the “local empire” Iran was threatened by Russians, French and the British. To what extent are the old established views among contemporary Iranians and Iranian elites true concerning historical facts? If you look on surveys and statistics in the last 50 years the vast majority of Iranians outside Iran were not much willing to migrate to Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Irak, 62 Interviews Azarbaijan, Turkey, Pakistan, India, Caucasus, Persian Gulf, East Asia, Africa, Latin America but Iranians searched much more destinations like the US, Canada, UK, Australia, France or Germany. That is because I suspect those elites that migrated had more intellectually in common with the West from the 19th century onwards and of course because of more obvious economic reasons. 6.3 The younger generations in Iran have a saying they do not believe much in “Khoon, Khaak, Khoda” (English: Blood, Territory, God). Do the newer generations act and react better and have a less nationalistic take on their own being? Are they in comparison to the revolutionary generation of the late 1970s more individualized? One could say they are more nationalistic than patriotic. However, this has been a problem with Iranian nationalism since its inception. Taqizadeh would ridicule these pastiches (I call them boutique) nationalists as “vatan-chi” and “mellat-chi”, professional nationalists who profess a love for their country but in reality will do little for the Iranian community. 7. The contemporary Iranian civil law has less to do with today’s global development, migration, citizenship rights. Many Iranians abroad attain a citizenship of a host country where they are migrated. If we turn the issue around and have a look at Iran even not a tiny number of foreign nationals, get the chance to be naturalized as Iranians. Why do Iranian elites at the top of the establishment changing less to pave the way for new “outsiders” who had been old Iranians like Persians from Afghans or Iraqi refugees? Just rethink of the Larijani brothers who are Iraqis and are holding highest political or judicial positions in state. 63 Ali M. Ansari This is one of the great anomalies of the modern Iranian state and its approach to nationality. The way we treat Afghans in particular is especially egregious. 7.1 In this sense, few people know about the “Ergh-e mell-i” (English: National Pride) concept. Can you explain to us this myth, please? If you mean by this, ‘national pride’ I do not think this can be understood as a distinct myth. I think to refer back to Taqizadeh; too many people confuse pride in their national community with chauvinism. It is possible to be a ‘cosmopolitan’ nationalist. 7.2 Why until our time one should reproduce the narrative of “Irani-ol-asl”? Who calculates someone being a real Iranian and what are its real measures? These are all matters of historical interpretation. 8. You have written a book “Crisis of Authority: Iran’s 2009 Presidential Election” in which you are analyzing the reign of Ahmadinejad. After Khatami’s eight-year concept of international “dialogue of civilizations” and national “civil society” a lot of experts thought Iran’s gate are open to its neighbors and the west. Then a new emergence of homegrown populism showed its face inside the Islamic Republic of Iran. Are next waves of a political and cultural populism predictable? Authoritarian populism is regrettably not unique to Iran though the circumstances there are obviously distinctive. This was a conservative reaction, which sought to appeal to the worst types of vulgar nationalism. 64 Interviews 8.1 The US and the west is approaching Iran since Rohani’s presidency. Are we at a historical point? Depends on whether you think that Rouhani can deliver on his promises of change. So far, as far as domestic policy is concerned he has not delivered a great deal. I suppose we must wait and see. 9. I talked in my own class on Iran about Iran as a “local empire”. There I mentioned the notion of a common cultural heritage between people of Iran, Persians of Afghanistan, Tajiks of Turkmenistan, Tajiks of Uzbekistan and other Iranian tribes and people outside its current borders. How important is it to highlight a common cultural heritage between Iran’s primary neighbors? This comes back to the notion of Iranshahr or Iran-zamin. I am not sure you can make an effective distinction of the term local empire. Iran was a political empire and in some ways now can be regarded as a cultural ‘empire’. It has a soft power capacity. Geographic categories have largely been established by Western social scientists who have defined the region as the near or Middle East or lately Western Asia. A better category may be Iran-zamin. There is a great book by Peter Christensen called “The Decline of Iranshahr” which argues that a better geographic category for the region would indeed be that latter term. 9.1 The masterpiece of Ferdowsi “Shahnameh” have the power to be probably a common cultural heritage between people of Iranian descent. Have other people and modern neighbor nation states the right to value it as theirs? I think it belongs to the Persianate/Iranian world. To describe it as a national artefact is to my mind to reduce its civilizational importance. 65 Ali M. Ansari 9.2 The Shah’s cultural and (a)historical approach had been to make a revival of ancient Iran. Even the leftist or the nowadays Islamists who rejected the concept of the Iran which the Shah propagated stay within a discourse which is close nationalistic, chauvinist. Do you think the indications of a blind nationalism are deeper than anticipated? I think the early nationalists (Taqizadeh, Foroughi) were far more successful than they could possibly imagine. The dominance of national narratives among all political factions is a real testament to this achievement even though many today would like to deny it. 10. Bertrand Russell estimated in his magnum opus “A History of Western Philosophy” (1945) a kind of English genius is embedded in approach and perception of intellectual thought and mind. With this respect should the contemporary Iranians and old Iranians such as Persians of Afghanistan, Tajiks from Tajikistan and Tajiks from Uzbekistan, Persians of Pakistan, Parsis of India, Iraqis, Azarbaijanis, Caucasians, Arabs not re-investigate in their time and being on their take and understanding how and what they perceive as “local” history within an Iranian frame? I think the important thing is for Iranians to engage with History and the writing of history in a serious way. It is a sad reflection that most of our history, both ancient and modern is dominated by people in the West. However, more than that, Iranians should engage with non- Iranian history, so they can better understand the world around them and engage with others on a meaningful level. Iranians are always pleased when a foreigner quotes Iranian history; think what the reaction might be if an Iranian showed some knowledge and interest of European history? 66 Interviews 10.1 In three countries Persian is the official language. In Iran, it is called Farsi, in Afghanistan Farsi-Dari and in Tajikistan Tajiki. Spinoza once stated misconceptions are founded on two major grounds: One time one thing gets many names or another time many things are getting a single name. Is a label a reason enough to get far from Iran and its ancient concept as a “local empire”? This is a result of thinking in categories defined by others. 10.2 The same happens if we you consider the Persian Gulf. Wealthy Arabs are paying western scholarship to disguise the discourse of the ancient name of Iran’s access to its very south. This southern strait brought Iran to its knees in the 18th and 19th centuryas its result Iran lost Herat to the British Empire. Do you think old Iranians (who are outside Iranian borderlines) like its contemporary people do not have any sentiments if the Persian Gulf is labelled as Arabic? I mean Persians who belong today to other states read their history as an Iranian one. This is history as politics. The answer must be to engage with these moves in a meaningful and above all intellectual way. Prof. Ansari thank you very much for your kindness and your invaluable time. End. 67 Ali M. Ansari 69 5. Bert Fragner 1. For decades, you have been involved with Iran and Afghanistan, with Islamic India from the late Middle Ages to the 20th century, with the Iranian-Turkish symbiosis in the Iranian Central- Asian region. You also made reference to cultural, economic and social history. How would you reflect on your work after so much research and teaching? So weren’t you even a pioneer in some areas of Iranian and Islamic Studies in the Germanspeaking world? I was certainly not the forerunner. But in the early 1970s, hardly any people in the German-speaking world were concerned with my topics. In Iran (University of Tehran etc.) I met above all passionate nationalists, who wanted to see Iran as an “eternal”, an extra-historical or suprahistorical phenomenon in the sense of the state doctrine of that time. I have always been interested in seeing and experiencing all aspects of human existence as compatible. To see Iranianness as the product of potential aliens did not seem desirable to me. It would above all I have investigated on, which I connect with Iranian culture devalue as a sort of “para-human”! In the decade of the Eighties and thereafter in Germany, Europe and far beyond, one could increasingly find similarly thinking people in my age group, who wanted to escape the myths of nationalism. Today it is not as “jazzâb” (English: interesting), as it was! 2. The nation-state model, after we live in today’s world order, hail from the history of European civilization and culture. If one takes Iran as an example – for many arbitrary territorial divisions, whose legal treaties were negotiated especially in Paris, in London or in Moscow – under consideration of the “Iranian Cultural Sphere”, one can make the following thesis: Is there still a continuity of the former Iran or also the Iranian cultural area, sphere and space? First, nationalism is an ideology based on the foundations of the Enlightenment, which turned against the aristocratic privileges of feudal society. In the nation state, therefore, there is more participation in theory than in the feudal state. From the very beginning, however, in competition with aristocratic rule, the nation has always built historical myths for self-justification “us”, has existed at least as long as “you” (Gentlemen)! So the paradox of nationalism is that it was in fact a modern phenomenon, but was characterized and justified by archaic symbols! There were the English, Dutch and above all the revolutionary political or “state nationalism” and the (Germany, Italy: “romantic nationalism”). In pre-modern empires (Habsburg, Czarist Russia, and Ottomans) an acutely defensive nationalism arose on the basis of the latter. Lenin attributed two potentials to nationalism in revolutionary Russia: a progressive one (defense against oppression) and a reactionary one (exercise of oppression). Today we are wiser and can say: Every nationalism has at least the reactionary side, even those nationalism which at first appear in real as progressive. As soon as they experience themselves as dominant, they immediately and unexpectedly begin to suppress smaller units placed under them. Why? Every nationalism postulates the unity of (its) nation, otherwise it would be nothing worth. So nationalism, with its own ideology, creates its inner enemy. One supposed tool is anti-colonialism, but it also proves to be nothing more than a myth: It makes it possible, to expose subordinate nationalisms as henchmen of superior oppressors. This goes every- 70 Interviews where, and is a typical phenomenon of “Third World” ideology. Logical conclusion: We must all get out of the nationalism – model, therefore: do not postulate any privileged and superior position for any “nation”. My problem: How can we get out of the “nation” model? Borders have never been “natural” and “super-historic”. They can be set at “equal eye level” or “unequal eye level” – in many cases this has been indifferent for the people concerned, unless they had reasons to identify with the respective or dominant rulers. 2.1 How would you define, limit and delimit the Iranian cultural sphere? I do not think it would be expedient to give the idea of an “everlasting nation-state”, an equally over-historical, “everlasting” and “cultural sphere”. We know very little about large parts of the past. Certain lines of continuity can be determined in individual cases, but the evidence of non-continuity is also there! Certainly, the borders of the present state of Iran in the 19th century are not the same. These political borders have been partly in London or in St. Petersburg (certainly not in Paris or Moscow) negotiated. The result is since then until today a nation state as the only currently conceivable political unit. Wars or political influence can also change such borders. But that is not the point. Why do we need the acceptance of a “cultural sphere”? Should its existence change political identities? All divisions are “arbitrary” and are caused by power relations. The “world empire” of the Achaemenids included Mesopotamia, West Asia, Anatolia, even Egypt – and also Sogdia and Chorasm. But the Achaemenid core area was always south of the Amu-Darya, and certainly not in Syria or Egypt. The Sasanids revived the idea of “Iran and Aniran”, although this was probably not an ethnic concept, but rather an ideological (Weltanschauung) or ethic one. 71 Bert Fragner “Aniran”, or also “Turan”, were meant as reflections of and to each other, in the name of the Turans all have Iranian names, so here it is rather about dualistic diversity in an imaginary, but not that much topographically defined space. From this it follows that an assumed confrontation of (mazlum) Iranians and (zâlem) conquerors (Turans, Mongols, Hephtalites, Turks from Central Asia, Englishmen, Russians, Americans) is pointless. It may explain current power relations, but in fact they are not ascertainable. Therefore, I would not call the Iranian cultural space as a historical entity only “Iranian”, but rather as a long-term networked communication space, which has reached from Asia Minor and the Caucasus via Transoxania to deep Central Asia, temporarily taking on larger dimensions (India!), but then shrunk again. Above all, I do not see an Iranian epicenter in this room, it is rather the playground where for thousands of years (not only) the match “Iranian History” has been played. An important element after the period of Islamization is the function of Persian as – in this very room – the second (later partly even the first) Islamic language of communication. This was not a “merit” of Iranian culture, just as the later spread of Turkish idioms in Central Asia was not a “Turkish” merit. 2.2 Following the question one can critically evaluate the genesis of the nation-state by e. g. takes up colonial and post-colonial discourses, thus viewing Iran and its immediate neighbors as territories that are separated forever or as temporary barriers between (Iranian) ethnic groups, languages, cultures and religions. Can the temporary separation since the nation state be a reason for “cultural ignorance and coexistence” with the past, if we start from a concept of culture true to the motto “unity in diversity”? So are the ethnic groups in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan or Uzbekistan really too far apart and have lost all linguistic, cultural, ethnic and religious ties to each other? 72 Interviews I take (post)colonial discourses very seriously – less in terms of content, however, than as a symptom. The attention that we are now turning to the historical phenomenon of inequality, asymmetry (nâ-barâbari) worldwide, which was forced upon us above all by Immanuel Wallerstein’s school, shows us the consequences of power-dependent inequality, but does not explain them. A flu illness is the consequence of a viral infection, but is not the viral infection itself. Therefore, the antidote consists in a serum against the virus, not in the destruction of the diseased organism. As far as the current Transoxanian countries are concerned (Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, etc.), they are actually far removed from the social experiences of Iranians and Afghans (in the nation-state sense). They live post-Soviet and are more compatible with Ukrainians or Bulgarians than with Iranians. The most important thing is communication: Today’s Uzbekistan is a distinct nation-state, the Persian speakers living there do not even have the status of Alsatians in France! One thing is important: not to lie to yourself historically and to pretend that Uzbekistan has always and forever existed – no: this is a Soviet topographical construction that is not yet a hundred years old. 2.3 The Tajik Iranian studies historian Prof. Safar Abdullah from Kazakhstan, who originally comes from Samarkand in today’s Uzbekistan, puts forward the relativistic thesis: “Today’s Iran is part of Iran”. How much Iran is really still in today’s Iran? Still, around 1880 there was no ethnic difference between Tajiks and Uzbeks. Uzbeks were a tribal confederation and represented the tribal aristocratic elites in Bukhara, Khiva (together with the Turkmen tribes) and Ferghana (Kokand), similar to the Pashtuns in the early time period of Afghanistan as a nation-state. The anti-colonial movement against the Russians gave rise to resistance movements of the natives, who mostly called themselves Musalman and were Turkic and Persian-speaking (often both). Around 1900, these increasingly became 73 Bert Fragner (under Tartar influence) ethno-national movements, predominantly of a Turkic character (hence the goal: independent Turkestan). Now and then Persian speakers who did not want to give up this old cultural language (their own cultural language) in favor of Turkish spoke out against the penetrance of the Turkish nationalists. They profited from the Soviet nationality policy. The Turkestanists were regarded as counter-revolutionaries, the other so-called “Stans” were put in place of the target “Turkestan”. The Tajiks were given their own country to weaken the particularly rebellious “Uzbeks”! The Tajik Nationalist (follower of Khorasane Bozorg) Akbar Tursunov (later Tursan, now in the USA) once said bluntly: “We Tajiks owe a lot to Stalin, without him there would have been no Tajikistan, and we would all have been Uzbekised!” The “Iranian” aspect of Tajik nationalism is directed in particular today against the Turkic fanaticism of the Uzbeks. 2.4 Which nation, state, or other concerned party may claim to be the guardian of achievements from an intellectually prosperous time? No one! The only people who can claim such a thing are historians. It is over now – one may mourn this, but it is fact. Anything else would be a sort of “Neo-Iranity”. So, again an ideological construction. What is important is an awareness of how everything once belonged together and was divided. This is the best way to prevent the invention of new identity ideologies. 3. Khorasan can be called a historical and intellectually rich region. We know that Khorasan plays an immense role in the history and development of the Persian language. What role did it play in its heyday – please, mention what and how you delimit Khorasan in time and space? But please: “Khorasan-e bozorg” (Greater Khorasan) did not exist either. The Sasanids artificially created Kho- 74 Interviews rasan as a merging of four ancient provinces into one defensive marker in the east (against Hephtalites, White Huns, Turks, etc.). From: Ariana (Herat), Margiana (Marv), Hyrcania (Gorgan), and Bactria (Balch) – all south of Amu-Darya, behind it was Sogdia, another area. The Islamic conquests confirmed and strengthened Khorasan, at the expense of the term “Iran”, as an administrative unit. This was only created again under the Mongolian Ilkhans. The former Sogdia was understood in the Abbasid caliphate for the first time as an extension of Khorasan: Mâ warâ an-nahr, which means literally “what lies beyond the stream”. Therefore, Alsi was considered a caliphate province in the vicinity of Khorasan – a mirror province, so to speak. Under the Mongols, Transoxania became Chagatasan, Khorasan remained Ilchanid. Thus, together with the western province of “Eraq” (Eraq-e ajam) it was reconstructed after seven hundred years into “Iran”. Today’s “Iran” concept is characterized by this separation. Since the year 1250 Samarkand and Bukhara are no longer “Iran”. But, something else. Does that mean that, that is where the contacts broke off? Not at all: The communication system, which we call the “Silk Road” today, already existed during the Achaemenid period and was strengthened by nothing as much as by the Eurasian Mongol rule! With the regression of this system (since the reign time of the Safavids, i. e. 1501), however, contacts also declined. Reason: the sea trade from China to the Indian Ocean became more and more important and the caravan trade fell behind. Incidentally, the Iranians had a considerable share in this maritime trade, but the predecessors of the Uzbeks and Tajiks did not succeed much. Prof. Fragner thank you very much for your kindness and your invaluable time. End. 75 Bert Fragner 77 III. Essays and Articles 79 1. Reza Deghati – The long Road of Exile One spring day in the small house in Paris where I live my life as an exile, my six-year-old son, Delazad, whose name means “free soul,” drew me out of my daydream. “Papa”, he said, “tell me about Iran”. Iran? How could I tell him about the country’s roots? My roots? His roots? I was quiet for a long while, thinking. No doubt he understood that I was on an inner voyage, traveling back into my past, because he said nothing and waited, like a child who is expecting a wonderful bedtime story. I started by telling him about the Iran of my childhood. “For as long as I can remember”, I said, “my father used to come home from work in the afternoon and then would settle down for the rest of the day in his study”, a sanctuary that belonged to him alone. It was decorated with Persian rugs and comfortable pillows, and it had many books. “A teapot was set on a samovar. And on a tray, tea glasses and cookies awaited his guests. My brother, my sisters, and I were not allowed to go into that room. For us, it was a mysterious place, and we couldn’t make any noise as we passed by it so that we wouldn’t disturb him as he rested, read, or talked with his friends. When I was six, he announced to me that I could come into the room and stay there with him. I was a big boy now, he said. I was proud of that recognition. Then, when I stepped into the room, I discovered a world I had never suspected. For the most part, the guests who came to visit my father were intellectuals, thinkers, and poets. While drinking tea, they would talk or read poetry for hours on end. Over the course of these afternoons, I came to hear the love poetry of Hafez; The Rose Garden by Sa’adi, the wise traveler who worshipped love and peace, as expressed in every flower petal, smile, or scent; Ferdoussi’s allegorical tales; and the life lessons of Rumi, the dervish. The time I spent in my father’s den helped form my thinking and gave me a grasp of Iran’s complex past and its refined and rich culture. Compared to today, the Iran of the past had much more freedom of thought. In the company of my father and his friends, I learned to value freedom. I understood that every one of us has a little flame that allows us to resist any kind of invasion. The years I spent listening to those men talk gave me a taste for three words: ‘love’, ‘freedom’, and ‘justice’. I have devoted my life to living by those three words.” Delazad was listening to me with the same kind of sustained attention as I used to have when I tried to follow what my father and his friends were saying. Speaking with the aptness typical of children, he looked around us and said: “After all, our home is a little like Iran”. Then he went away to play, which left me to go deeper into my thoughts. He was right. After years of wandering, I had finally set up a home, a hearth where cultures are bridged and intertwined. Delazad and his sister, Djanan, belong to two nations, and are from both Iran—where they still cannot go—and France. Rachel, my wife, who is French, and I have raised them to respect the fundamental idea of universal citizenship, and live by that spirit. On March 25, 1981, at 7:35 in the morning, I left my country with my camera bag. It was a fitting way for me to leave since it was in the name of my work as a photographer-witness that I had been sentenced to death. On that day, I set off on the long road of exile. Since then, my inner journey has been the wandering of a nomad roaming around a forbidden land. Without a doubt, my first years of exile were strongly marked by the shock I felt when I realized the gap 80 Essays and Articles between my idealized image of a free West and the reality. Western democracies turned out to be as arrogant as they were disappointing. My experience of freedom had an empty face, and my exile was filled with doubt and sadness. One rainy, somber November day, I went with a group of fellow Iranians to the Père-Lachaise Cemetery in Paris. We were accompanying the thinker and writer Gholam-Hossein Sa’edi to his final home. By his graveside, we tasted the bitterness of death and interment while in exile and imagined the sorrow, for him, of knowing that his flesh would be mingled with an earth that was not his. I took a photograph of our sad procession through the cemetery. Some time later, as he was looking at the image, the poet Ahmad Shamlu said: “Even a statue of stone cries and moans on the day of separation from the beloved”. REZA By Rachel Deghati Sofreh from Azarbaijan. 81 Reza Deghati – The long Road of Exile Tajiks (Persians) from Tajikistan. 82 Essays and Articles Persians (Tajiks) from China. Mazar-i-Sharif in North-Afghanistan. 83 Reza Deghati – The long Road of Exile 85 2. John Baily – The development of the 14-stringed Herati dutâr Ustad Mohammad Karim Herawi and The development of the 14-stringed Herati dutâr The term dutar refers to a family of long-necked fretted lutes, usually with two strings; the word dutar (or dotar) means literally ‘two strings’, although some forms of the instrument have more than that. Traditionally, the dutar was fitted with strings of silk or gut, but in many instances these have been replaced by metal strings. The dutar is widespread in the Middle East, Anatolia, and Central Asia, and is often named after specific cultural groups or geographical regions. Thus, we find the Uzbek dutar, the Turkmen dutar, the Khorasani dotar, the Uighur dutar, and so on, but here we are concerned specifically with the dutar of Herat, from western Afghanistan. This is an instrument that underwent profound structural changes between approximately 1950 and 1965 (1328 and 1343) and it is this process of transformation that is the subject of this short paper.1 Until about 1950, the Herati dutar was very much like the equivalent instrument across the border in Iranian Khorasan, especially around the town of Torbat-e Jam, the site of the important Sufi shrine of Sheikh Ahmad-e Jam. Outside Torbat-e Jam it was very much an instrument of rural music making. In the Herat region, the two strings were between 1 Research carried out in Herat 1973–74. See also Baily 1976, 1988. 65 and 75 centimetres in length, and a rather limited system of fretting known as pardeh rasteh was used. Only the first string was fingered with the left hand, the second string serving as a drone. The shape of the resonator was described as qashoqi (‘spoon shaped’), elongated, with a ridge along the back. The instrument was played ‘open-handed’, that is, with the bare fingers of the right hand rather than with a plectrum. This form of the Herati dutar was rare by the 1970s but remained very popular across the border in Iran, where steel had replaced silk or gut for the strings. I videoed a number of dotar players in Torbat-e Jam in 2002, revealing something of the highly sophisticated right-hand technique for the instrument, which exploits the anatomical possibilities of the human hand, with down and up strokes of the first finger, upstrokes of the thumb, and down strokes of all four fingers. In the 1950s, certain changes were made to the Herati dutar. String length increased somewhat, to around 75 to 85 centimetres. Gut strings were replaced with metal ones, the number of strings increased from two to three, and changes occurred also to the system of fretting, which was now semi-chromatic, with gaps between the 4th and the 5th and the octave and the 9th above the note given by the open string. This system of fretting is generally called pardeh filmi, ‘film fretting’, with reference to the many Indian films from Bombay studios being shown in cinemas in Afghanistan from the 1950s. The 3-stringed dutar was played with a plectrum (nakhunak), fashioned from a bicycle spoke bent into shape to fit over the 1st finger like a thimble (see Figure 2). The plectrum was borrowed from another Afghan instrument, the tanbur, a large long-necked lute with sympathetic strings. The nakhunak gave the instrument a completely different sound: loud, aggressive and percussive. Now only the 1st finger, bearing the plectrum, struck the strings, with down strokes and up strokes, with the plectrum scraping across the surface of the wooden soundboard of the instrument (the rutal) as though it was a scraper. This added the percussive element to the sound. This form of the dutar was relatively common in Herat in the 1970s. 86 Essays and Articles 87 John Baily – The development of the 14-stringed Herati dutâr 88 Essays and Articles 89 John Baily – The development of the 14-stringed Herati dutâr In the 1960s, the Herati dutar underwent a further and much more radical transformation. The size of the instrument increased, to a string length of about 90 to 95 centimetres. The shape of the body changed, becoming rounder and shorter in proportion to the total length of the instrument. Not only was the neck longer, but its width and depth increased to give it greater strength to withstand the tension of the additional strings. More frets were added, giving a chromatic range of two octaves. Still only, the first string was fingered with the left hand, but a number of sympathetic strings were added. The instrument normally has four long strings, with tuning pegs inserted medially and laterally in the head of the instrument, and ten sympathetic strings, with tuning pegs along the instrument’s neck. Despite the addition of these extra strings, the instrument is still called the dutar, or sometimes, the 14-stringed dutar (dutar-e chahardah jelau). While the 2-stringed dutar was more or less restricted to two musical modes (later identified as Bairami and Pari) , and the 3-stringed dutar to four modes (Bairami, Pari, Kesturi and Jog),2 the 14-stringed dutar is designed to deal with a wide variety of scale types, following Hindustani music theory in which 32 different scale types are possible. The 14-stringed dutar has been modified to enable it to cope with the complex art and popular music of Kabul, which in due course spread to other cities in Afghanistan like Herat in the 1930s. Right-hand technique for the 14-stringed dutar is quite different to that for the 2- and 3-stringed dutars. The nakhunak, the thimble-like plectrum adopted from the tanbur by 3-stringed dutar players is used, worn on the 1st finger. The man generally credited with the invention of the 14-stringed dutar, Mohammad Karim Herawi (see below), devised a unique technique in which the main stroke is the upstroke, towards the player’s body. The right hand is supported over the strings by the third finger and thumb resting on the soundboard (rutal) of the dutar. Karim claimed that he adopted this technique from the Indian sitar 2 These terms derive from North Indian musical practice and were applied to the 2- and 3-stringed dutars once the 14-stringed instrument had come into use. 90 Essays and Articles (which was played by a few individuals in Kabul) but it seems more likely that Karim’s technique was influenced by the technique for the Afghan tanbur, where a similar hand position is employed in which the upstroke is the main stroke. In contrast, other dutar players use a technique in which the downstroke is the main stroke. Here, the thumb is used to give added support to the plectrum by pressing against the 1st finger, as though it were a flat pick, the other fingers are held in a flexed position tucked into the palm. The technique is very like that used for playing the Afghan rubab, an instrument that inspired Karim Herawi in re-inventing the dutar. The transition from 2-stringed dutar to 3-stringed dutar It would appear that in the earlier part of the twentieth century the dutar, in its 2-stringed form, was very much an instrument played by rural amateurs, mainly to accompany their singing, especially of the quatrains known as chaharbeiti. There was little by way of purely instrumental music for the dutar. Many of the dutar players in Herat city with whom I worked associated the dutar with Khvaf, a large village just across the border in Iranian Khorasan. Many of the old dutars to be found in the antique shops of Herat city were said to have been made in Khvaf, and were of a high standard of craftsmanship. One in my possession has a hollow neck, which is most unusual. As stated above, an important centre for the dutar in Iranian Khorasan is the town of Torbat-e Jam, which is built around the shrine complex of the Sufi master Sheikh Ahmad-e Jam. The shrine is unusual because the dutar (or dotar as it is called in the local vernacular) has a musical role in the Sufi rituals performed at the shrine. There is a song in supplication to the Sheikh that is very well known in Herat.3 Visiting Torbat-e Jam in 2002 I was able to record a number of singer-dotar players, including the redoubtable Ghulam Ali Pur-Atay, and I also 3 A version of this song by Abdul Sha’er can be found on The Traditional Music of Heart CD (see discography). 91 John Baily – The development of the 14-stringed Herati dutâr found the town to be an important centre for the making of dotars. In the Herat Valley much of the rural song repertoire accompanied by the dutar was the quatrain, the so-called chaharbeiti, a vast collection of memorised folk-poetry that the singer invokes while performing. Dutar players were farm workers, generally amateur musicians who eschewed payment for providing musical entertainment at social gatherings, but there were no doubt some who had a more ‘semi-professional’ approach. The advent of the 3-stringed dutar is closely bound up with the development of radio broadcasting in the 1930s. Transmissions from Radio Kabul could not be received in Herat until about 1945. Even then, before the advent of the transistor radio and with the very limited supply of mains electricity even in the city, there were few radios to receive these broadcasts. In order to overcome this problem, a loud-speaker system was installed in some of the main streets of Herat by the Ministry of Information and Culture (which ran the radio station in Kabul) in the 1940s. This broadcast the news, music, and other programmes, to a predominantly male audience in those public spaces. Similar radio reception systems were established in other of the main provincial towns and cities, a programme of modernisation that was completed by about 1945. Radio broadcasting opened up new possibilities for communication between Kabul and the rest of the country. The stated aims of the radio station were to spread the message of the Holy Quran, to reflect the national spirit, to perpetuate the treasures of Afghan folklore, and to contribute to public education. The government saw radio as the best and quickest way to communicate to and inform the population of its policies and development programmes. It may well be that music on air was seen by the government as a way of attracting an audience that could then be informed about local news and government edicts and policies. Music may also have been deliberately used to promote nationalism, modernity and secularism. 92 Essays and Articles In the early days there were three ensembles at the radio station: one with traditional Afghan and Indian instruments; a folk music band; and a western reed and brass band that was seconded from the Afghan army (Baily 2016). In brief, the first mentioned of the three ensembles was made up of musicians from Kabul’s Musicians’ Quarter (the Kucheh Kharabat) who were in the main the descendants of musicians who came to Kabul in the later part of the nineteenth century as court entertainers, in a period when the Amirs of Kabul were great patrons of music. The instruments they played were largely derived from Indian music, such as ‘armonia, sitar; sarangi; tabla and tanpura. The rubâb was the only Afghan instrument in the ensemble, the rest were instruments of Hindustani music. The music they played bore a strong Indian imprint but was really the development of a distinctive Afghan classical music for ghazalkhani. The second ensemble from the early days of Radio Kabul was the band of Ustad Durai Logari, from the Logar Valley. Like other areas close to Kabul, such as Parwan, Wardak, and Shomali, this is a mixed Pashto-Dari speaking area. The Logari style is a blend of Pashtun and Tajik elements, and remains extremely popular. The typical Logari ensemble consists of singer–‘armonia player, with rubab, sarinda and dohol. The musical style is predominantly Pashtun, using the three common melodic modes of Pashtun music – Pari, Kesturi and Bairami – and is characterized by short up-tempo instrumental sections, with strong rhythmic cadences leading to dramatic breaks. Song texts are either in Pashto or in Dari. The third ensemble was the ‘Jazz Orchestra’. The term jaz here refers not to North American jazz music, but simply to the use of European instrumentation. The first school of music was established in Kabul in 1924 as part of the Military College. At that time the Afghan army was trained by Turkish military instructors and it is probable that the teachers of military music were also from Turkey. The intention was to train Afghan bandsmen to establish military music ensembles in garrisons in provincial cities such as Kandahar, Mazar and Herat. 93 John Baily – The development of the 14-stringed Herati dutâr Alongside these ensembles there was the development of a new style of Afghan popular music, mostly in Pashto and Dari, and the popularisation of songs from the Indian films shown in the cinemas of Afghanistan. Dutar players added extra frets to enable them to play these new filmi melodies. From approximately 1950 to 1965 the tea-house was the stronghold of the dutar in the city of Herat. Some tea-houses kept a dutar on the premises with which the customers could entertain themselves or be entertained by the proprietor. Certain tea-houses became meeting places for dutar players, and were run by men who were themselves enthusiasts. They were well-known for their regular music sessions. We may detect in this some influence of the tea-house in northern Afghanistan as a focus for musical activity, a performance space researched at length by Mark Slobin in the 1960s.4 This influence is perhaps also shown by the popularity in Herat of Uzbek tunes played with dambura-type percussive effects. A particularly important tea-house, which seems to have been at the centre of developments taking place to the dutar, was run by Mama Ghani at the Kandhahar Gate, an important bazaar for villagers coming to the city on market days. To some extent the 3-stringed dutar was favoured as a solo instrument, and the style of playing that developed emphasised speed and ornamentation. Often the dutar was played in a small group with a singer and a zirbaghali player. The zirbaghali is a goblet-shaped clay drum that was introduced into Herat during that period, possibly from northern Afghanistan. Dutar players from the villages brought their rural repertoire to the city and popularised it there, while they took back the new music and latest ideas about playing from the city. The tea-house sessions became popular with city dwellers and while the first ‘generation’ of dutar players in the city were villagers, the second ‘generation’ consisted of urban enthusiasts who had learned to play by watching dutar players in the tea-houses. In this way the dutar became 4 See Slobin (1976). 94 Essays and Articles established as an urban instrument. It is noteworthy that many of the well-known 14-stringed dutar players in the city I interviewed in 1974 had learned something about dutar playing through watching the musicians in Mama Ghani’s tea-house, but by the time of my research teahouse sessions were discouraged by the local police. The development of the 14-stringed dutar The transformation of the dutar into an instrument with 14 strings is generally attributed to Mohammad Karim Herawi, often known locally as Karim Dutari. Arguably, the addition of more strings was the logical extension of a process already underway in the change from 2- to 3-stringed dutar, and it is possible that Mohammad Karim Herawi was aware of these experiments before he went to Kabul in 1956 (1335–36). However, in terms of re-designing the dutar there can be little doubt that he was responsible, for the changes in the dutar were not simply a matter of adding more strings but of re-thinking the instrument, strengthening it and changing somewhat the shape of the resonator. The story is of such interest and significance that it merits recounting in some detail.5 Mohammad Karim Herawi was born in the city of Herat in about 1937 (1316). He seems to have come from a family with a proclivity for music. His father, Mohammad Rahim, had a shop selling rice and seeds but was also a singer and player of tabla and other drums, and his father’s brother played the rubab. His paternal grand-father had been an amateur chahartar player back in the 1920s, when this instrument enjoyed a vogue of popularity.6 Karim attended mosque school for five years and primary school for six years, and was well-educated in comparison with many of his peers. 5 The information given here comes from a lengthy recorded interview held in Herat on 12 June 1974. 6 The Iranian tar is generally known as chahartar in Herat. 95 John Baily – The development of the 14-stringed Herati dutâr His first instrument was a battered old harmonium which belonged to a neighbour, and which he started playing at the age of nine. He started playing the dutar aged about 13, learning by hanging out in Mama Ghani’s teahouse, watching other players. His father died when he was about 16 and for two years or so he lived with relatives in Qala Now, a town in the adjacent province of Badghis. It was there that he heard many of the locals singing chaharbeitis to melodies that he learned to play on the dutar. Aged about 19 he decided to move to Kabul to try to get admission to a technical college. Some young friends in Kabul persuaded him to go to Radio Kabul to see if the management would give him a chance to play on air, which would be a good chance for him. Therefore, he went to the Music Department of Radio Kabul, supported by some of his friends, and asked whether they were interested. The man who interviewed him had never heard of the dutar and when Karim produced his dutar hidden beneath his chapan (‘cloak’) declared it to be a dambura with frets. A tabla player was sent for from the studio, and they played well together. So they took Karim to play for the Director of the radio, a Mr Binawa, who was also impressed. They told Karim to come back in the afternoon to perform. In those days most music was performed live. After his performance, the radio station received many telephone calls from members of the audience to say how much they had enjoyed his playing and could they hear more. So the next day he played again, and once more the following day. After several days Karim was asked to join a new ensemble the radio station was putting together. This was the Orkestra Melli ‘the national orchestra’, often also called the Orkestra Mahali, ‘the folk music orchestra’. This consisted of what were considered to be traditional instruments of Afghanistan: rubab, ghaichak, tanbur, sarinda, dohol, zirbaghali and other local instruments. The leader of the orchestra was rubab player Ustad Mohammad Omar, one of the most celebrated musicians of Afghanistan in the later twentieth century and an officially appointed Ustad, ‘Master 96 Essays and Articles Musician’. This was an extraordinary stroke of good fortune for Karim, who now had a well-paid government job at the radio station that he held for the next 17 years, and was in a position to learn a great deal about the music performed at Radio Kabul. The Orkestra Melli was launched in 1956 (1335–36). At that time, the radio station had only two tape recorders, which were used for music which was being played many times during the day, such as before the news. The rest of the music was broadcast live. Karim’s job in the ensemble was quite demanding in terms of time. From 6.00 am to 8.00 am they accompanied various singers. From 8.00 am to 10.00 am the musicians were free. From 10.00 am to midday they had rehearsals. From mid-day to 1.00 pm there was live music on air. From 1.00 pm to 4.00 pm they were free, and from 4.00 pm to 10.00 pm or later they were working again. As well as playing on air the Orkestra Melli played at official functions and for official concert trips abroad. Karim told me he had played in Tehran, Moscow, Leningrad, Tashkent, Bukhara and Dushambe. Karim quickly became dissatisfied with the 3-stringed dutar in the context of the orchestra. Its sound was very soft, and he could hardly hear himself play surrounded by all the other instruments. He started adding more strings to it but the added tension caused the instrument to warp and become difficult to play. He broke several instruments through these experiments. Eventually he sought the advice of a famous instrument maker in Kabul, Bacheh Qader. Working together they went through a series of prototypes, increasing the size of the instrument, making the resonator rounder and shorter in proportion to the neck to allow more frets to be tied, and making the neck wider and deeper to resist the tension of the added strings. After three or four years Karim was satisfied with his redesigned instrument in about 1960 (1339). Being a member of the Orchestra Melli gave Karim great opportunities to broaden his repertoire, improve his knowledge of music theory and achieve mastery of his new instrument. In the context of his 97 John Baily – The development of the 14-stringed Herati dutâr work in the studios of Radio Kabul he could consult other musicians about the music he was playing. Early on it seems he started learning the rubab, having a few lessons from Ustad Mohammad Omar concerning rubab technique, and with the idea of transferring classical rubab music to the dutar. The rubab is not just the national instrument of Afghanistan, but it embodies many aspects of Afghan music.7 A prominent feature of rubab playing is the occasional use of the shortest sympathetic string as a high drone, in a technique called parandkari (‘parand work’). On the rubab this string is raised by a protuberance on the bridge so that it can be struck in isolation. This raising of the shortest sympathetic string and its use in parandkari is attributed to Ustad Mohammad Omar. The bridge of the 14-stringed dutar also has the raised short sympathetic string (see Figure 3). As already mentioned, Karim developed the upstroke as the main stroke on the 14-stringed dutar. This meant that there was some engagement of the long drones in the upstroke, giving a richer sound, and allowing access to the high drone. Karim claimed that his technique derived from the Indian sitar, but there are some differences in the hand position and it seems that the tanbur was the model for this aspect of his playing. 7 See Baily (1981). 98 Essays and Articles During this time, Karim was an infrequent visitor to Herat. His job at Radio Kabul allowed little time for vacations. But Karim was sometimes to be heard on the radio playing with tabla or doholak accompaniment and the dutar players in Herat became very interested in the sound of the new instrument, though they did not know anything about its design. At about this time a 5-stringed dutar became popular in Herat. This was more or less the 3-stringed instrument with an added long drone and a short string with a tuning peg at the point where the neck meets the resonator, which could be used for parandkari. This was played with the nakhunak on the first finger in the downstroke style described earlier. It was not until some time later that Karim visited Herat with his new dutar, and the local dutar players could see and hear the new instrument. 14-stringed dutars started to be produced locally by instrument maker Zebiullah. It was not until Karim left Radio Kabul and returned to live in Herat in about 1970 (1350) that he asked another and younger instrument maker Paindeh Mohammad to start making dutars according to the design perfected in collaboration with Bacheh Qader in Kabul. This is the model, which is now favoured by most players of the 14-stringed dutar. The 14-stringed dutar quickly became assimilated into the musical life of Herat. It largely replaced the 3-stringed instrument for playing the vernacular teahouse style and became very prominent at the many country fairs held around the season of Now Ruz (‘New Year’, beginning at the time the Spring equinox). It was played at gatherings of friends, often in gardens away from the homes of people who might not like to be bothered by the sound of music. It was also adopted by the urban bands of professional hereditary musicians playing a music informed by the recently re-formulated classical music of Kabul, notably the singing of ghazals as well as newly composed popular songs. The hereditary musicians added the 14-stringed dutar to their line-up but did not normally play the dutar themselves, but employed an originally amateur player. In this way a few dutar players became full-time professionals, such as Ghulam Haidar (Lorraine Sakata’s dutar teach- 99 John Baily – The development of the 14-stringed Herati dutâr er) who played with the Golpasand family band, and Gada Mohammad, who played with Ustad Amir Mohammad, a Kabuli singer who spent much of his time in Herat, where he enjoyed great popularity. Despite his many years at the radio station in Kabul, Mohammad Karim Herawi never quite fitted into this category. His upstroke technique was not suitable for playing at wedding parties or Ramazan concerts, where musicians had to play more or less continuously for several hours with hardly a break. As a professional musician, Karim preferred to play the rubab. The case of the Herati dutar throws light on the question of innovation in the design of musical instruments. It is clear that the changes in the dutar occurred in response to the need to adapt the instrument to play kinds of music that had originally existed quite separately from the dutar. There were three important stages in the instrument’s transformation – forms that are conveniently labelled 2-, 3- and 14-stringed dutars, though the structural differences between them extended to other features besides the number of strings they had. The change from the 2- to the 3-stringed dutar might be termed a “collective invention”; made by a number of men who experimented with different aspects of the instrument, such as the number of strings, the material of the strings, the system of fretting, and the use of a plectrum. The change from the 3- to the 14-stringed dutar might be described as an “individual invention”, being the idea of one man placed in a particularly stimulating environment. In this case, too, we find a period of experimentation in which first the number of strings was gradually increased, and then changes in the shape, size, fretting and decoration of the instrument made later. The changes in the dutar as a purely physical entity have a significance that extends far beyond their interest from the point of view of material culture. They express is a concrete manner the essence of a complex and dynamic socio-musical situation which involves changes in music structure and changes in the social position of music and musicians. 100 Essays and Articles Bibliography Baily, John, ‘Recent changes in the dutâr of Herat’, Asian Music, VIII–1, (1976): 29–64. ––––– ‘A system of modes used in the urban music of Afghanistan’, Ethnomusicology, 25–1 (1981):1–39. ––––– Music of Afghanistan: Professional musicians in the city of Herat, with accompanying audiocassette (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1988). ––––– War, Exile and the Music of Afghanistan: The Etnographer’s Tale, with accompanying DVD (Routledge 2016). Sakata, Hiromi Lorraine, Music in the Mind: The Concepts of Music and Musician in Afghanistan (Kent: Kent State University Press, 1983). With two accompanying audio cassettes. Reprinted with a new foreword and preface (Washington and London: Smithsonion Institution Press, 2002) with CD. Slobin, Mark, Music in the Culture of Northern Afghanistan, Viking Fund Publications in Anthropology No. 54 (Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 1976.) Discography There are three pieces played by Ghulam Haidar on the recordings that accompany Sakata’s monograph, see above. There are two pieces played by Qasem Asiawan on Slobin’s Afghanistan Untouched two-CD set Traditional Crossroads 80702-4319-2. Gada Mohammad plays solo and as accompanist on 3 tracks on the CD Afghanistan. The Traditional Music of Herat. This CD also has one track of Karim Dutari playing 3-stringed dutar. Gada Mohammad plays on several tracks on the CD Afghanistan. Rubâb et Dutâr Ocora C 560080 John Baily plays 2-, 3- and 14-stringed dutars on the CD Sweet Nomad Girl. Folk Music from Afghanistan, accompanying Abdul Wahab Madadi and Veronica Doubleday. Metier World MW360-01. 101 John Baily – The development of the 14-stringed Herati dutâr 103 3. Richard Stoneman – Xerxes’ Persia The idea of Iran-zamin emerged with the creation of the Achaemenid Empire in the sixth century BC. An ancient Persian text, the Videvdad or Vendidad (The Law against the Demons) lists sixteen lands created by Ahura Mazda, many of which correspond to those named by Darius the Great in his Bisutun inscription. Identification is sometimes problematic but a number are clear: Ahura Mazda spake unto Spitama Zarathustra, saying: I have made every land dear to its dwellers, even though it had no charms whatever in it: had I not made every land dear to its dwellers, even though it had no charms whatever in it, then the whole living world would have invaded the Airyana Vaejo [i. e. Eranvezh, the ancestral land of the Iranians in Central Asia]. The god goes on to divide Eranvezh ‘by the good river Daitya’ (later, the Araxes) into the following provinces: Sogdia, Merv, Balkh, Nisaya, Haraiva (Areia or Hari-Rud), ‘Vaekereta’ (Kabul), Urva (said to be Tus), Hyrcania (Gorgan), Harahvaiti (Arachosia), Hetumant (Helmand), Ragha (Rayy), Kakhra (unidentified), Varena (possibly the Elburz), the Seven Rivers (Punjab, though punj/panj means ‘five’), and the ‘land by the floods of the Rangha, where the headless people live’. The last is clearly mythical and is situated somewhere by the encircling river that the Greeks called Ocean. This Persian tradition must be the origin of the report in Darius’ emissary Scylax of Caryanda about these monstrous folk, who reappear also in Ctesias’ account of the men ‘whose heads do grow beneath their shoulders’. Each of the provinces is also characterized by a physical disadvantage or moral flaw, created by the evil spirit ‘Angra-Mainyu, who is all death’: these include the river-serpents Eramezh, cattle-flies in Sogdia, unbelief in Nisaya, mosquitoes in Herat, pride in Urva, burial of the dead in Arachosia (as opposed to exposure), witchcraft in Helmand, burning of the dead in Kakhra and cold winters in Ragha. The Vendidad is subject to the problem common to all Zoroastrian literature, that the MSS date from no earlier than the ninth century CE, and the works were almost certainly not written down until the later Sassanian period (sixth century CE). But these religious texts were faithfully preserved, in their highly archaic dialect, from the earliest times, by continual oral recitation. It is thus reasonable to suppose that the book contains information that would have been acceptable in the fifth century BC. It is notable that the lands listed in the Vendidad are all in eastern Iran – Media and Khorasan. Persis/Fars is not mentioned (though the scholar James Darmesteter hazarded a guess that Urva might be Isfahan). Cyrus was the first to incorporate Persis in the Empire; to traditional Iranians, not least the Magi whose tribal centre was Media, Achaemenid Persis was never really part of their world. The advance to Persis is alluded to in the Vendidad (II. 10), when Yima, ‘the good shepherd’ (another name for the culture hero Jamshid) Stepped forward, southwards, to meet the sun. And Yima made the earth grow larger by one third than it was before, and there came flocks and herds of men, at his will and wish, as many as he wished. He went on to lay out a Vara, with streets and houses, rivers, birds, trees, seeds, sheep and oxen – in short ‘a paradise’. 104 Essays and Articles A Tolerant Society? The Achaemenid Empire was something new in history. It was the first time that such a wide area had come under the rule of a central power; the Assyrian empire had been on a small scale by comparison, and the example of China was unknown to the peoples of Western Asia. A remarkable feature of the Persian Empire is its toleration – within limits. Though cruelty was used as a political instrument, there was no wholesale repression of subject peoples in the way of, say, the Roman Empire or the Soviet bloc. Though the style of Achaemenid art has much in common with that of the predecessor empire of Assyria, it is notable that it never depicts battles or scenes of cruel punishment. Peaceful scenes of tribute-bearing stand side by side with representations of the king wrestling with the demons of Evil; though there are bound prisoners on the Bisutun relief, and one trampled enemy, there are no rows of impaled bodies as in Assurbanipal’s reliefs, nor even clashing warriors as in the wall paintings of Egypt. Sasanian art develops this trend even further, concentrating on scenes of hunting, rarely battle – though the portrayal of the humiliation of the Roman emperor Valerian by Shapur I is an exception. Religious toleration is a more contested matter. The founder, Cyrus, was explicit in a statement of religious toleration. The Cyrus cylinder states the case: I am Cyrus, king of the universe, the great king, the powerful king, king of the four quarters of the world, son of Cambyses, descendant of Teispes, the great king, and king of the city of Anshan. I sought the safety of the city of Babylon and all its sanctuaries. The sanctuaries across the river Tigris – whose shrines had earlier become dilapidated, the gods who lived therein, and made permanent sanctuaries for them. I collected together all of their people and returned them to their settlements, and the gods of the land of Sumer and Akkad which Nabonidus – to the fury of the lord of the gods – had brought into Shuanna, at the command of 105 Richard Stoneman – Xerxes’ Persia Marduk, the great lord, I returned them unharmed to their cells, in the sanctuaries that make them happy. Other documents refer to ‘Cyrus, who loves Esagila [the temple of Bel in Babylon]’. As Bruce Lincoln has put it, ‘Conceivably the Teispid kings were eclectic and/or opportunistic in their theology, worshipping Marduk in Babylon, YHWH in Jerusalem, Horus and Ra in Memphis, Apollo in Miletus, and so on.’ This could be interpreted either as enlightened tolerance or as calculated self-interest. One may cite Darius’ concern for the sacred gardeners of Apollo at Aulai, or for the Temple in Jerusalem. Josephus (Antiquities of the Jews 11.120) asserts that Xerxes was ‘pious to Yahweh’ – but the king in Josephus’ account is in fact Artaxerxes I. The pogrom in Susa that drives the plot of the Book of Esther might however be taken as evidence against toleration, while during the Ionian revolt, it seems, sanctuaries were systematically destroyed as punishment. The situation in Greece was more complex, as will be discussed shortly. Toleration as such may be an anachronistic concept, but these passages do show a concern for the maintenance of established religions. Xerxes and the Daevas Xerxes himself, however, has been seen as a king with a mission to establish Zoroastrianism to the exclusion of all other religions. One of his own inscriptions (XPh 4b, 35–41) states: Among these countries there was (a place) where previously false gods were worshipped. Afterwards, by the favour of Ahura-mazda, I destroyed that sanctuary of the demons, and I made proclamation, ‘The demons shall not be worshipped!’ Where previously the demons were worshipped, there I worshipped Ahuramazda and Arta [Justice] reverently. 106 Essays and Articles Interestingly, Esfandiyar speaks in rather similar terms in the History of the Early Kings of Persia by Mir Khvand: I am Esfandiyar, the son of Gushtasp, who have cleansed the face of the earth from the polluted existence of the wicked; quelled whatever tumults have arisen in the four quarters; freed the world from the treason of the idolatrous and reprobate; and confirmed the true worshippers in the service of the Almighty. (He goes on to speak in praise of Zardusht, Zoroaster). The account is a summary of the longer narrative in Ferdowsi, in which Esfandiyar carries the faith of Zoroaster far and wide, even as far as Rum (equivalent to the Byzantine Empire, and thus including Greece) and Hindustan: He burns the idols and sends copies of the Zend Avesta to the benighted nations. Even in the 1970s, the Shah of Iran believed that he had a divine mission, like that of Jamshid. Messages from God had helped him ‘save’ his country. (Mind you, the US president thought the same). ‘The place’ referred to in Xerxes’ inscription could be anywhere, of course, but it has sometimes been thought to be Babylon. Herodotus (i. 183) says that, after suppressing a revolt in Babylon soon after his accession, Xerxes carried off a statue of solid gold, fifteen high, from the temple of Bel, and killed the priest who tried to prevent him. This was not the cult statue itself, but the sacrilege recalls the stories of Cambyses’ sacrilege in Egypt – and, later, of Xerxes’ removal of artistic treasures from Athens. However, it is only Alexander’s propaganda that made Xerxes the destroyer of E-sagila, so that he himself could pose as its restorer. Xerxes’ proclamation could with equal plausibility be taken as describing the Athenian Acropolis. Religious zeal has sometimes been counted among the motives for the Persian invasion of Greece, but this is inconsistent with Xerxes’ veneration of, for example, the temple of Athena at Troy. The key consideration seems to be whether an enemy submits gracefully or has to be beaten into submission in battle; 107 Richard Stoneman – Xerxes’ Persia in the latter case, the gods are treated as enemies just like the humans they protect, and come in for similar destruction. In this ‘religious’ interpretation of Xerxes’ campaign, based by some authors on interpretation of the ‘daeva-inscription’, Xerxes is credited with a missionary zeal to bring over the whole world to his own creed. The question was examined thoroughly in an important article by Ugo Bianchi (1977), in which he argues for a purely ‘local’ interpretation of the daeva-inscription. The daevas, in this view, are not foreign gods, who could not be described as ‘the other gods who are’, but gods of the popular religion at a lower level than Ahura Mazda. (Nor do they include, for example, Mithras, who retains his status alongside Ahura Mazda). It should be noted that the Persepolis Fortification Tablets, dating from the reigns of Darius and Xerxes, contain mention of many deities, as well as of the lan sacrifice which seems, whatever it is, not to be a fire-rite. Marduk, for example, could not be one of the daevas, since he is sometimes seen as simply the Babylonian name for Ahura Mazda. In the Gathas this term is used for the gods of Zoroaster’s ancestors, the ‘idols’. Drug and Aeshma, Lie and Violence, are also demons in this sense. Heleen Sancisi-Weerdenburg (1980 and 1993) went further and argued that the inscription is entirely generic and does not contain a ‘personal’ statement. It is simply a statement of religious orthodoxy. ‘The worship of Ahura Mazda is a metaphor for loyalty to the king’, and, as a corollary, daeva-worship is a metonym for rebellion (XPh 35). The emphasis is on the fact that ‘where false gods were worshipped, I worshipped Ahura Mazda’: i. e. Xerxes brought right thinking to places of The Lie; but he did not impose it permanently. He improved these places by performing Zoroastrian rituals in them. This view has now come to be accepted, but it is nonetheless a forceful statement of the religious underpinning of Persian rule. The most recent statement, by Wouter Henkelman, draws attention to an inscription of the Elamite king, Tepti-Huban-Insušnak, some seventy to ninety years before Xerxes, which asserts the dominant religion in similar terms. Xerxes’ inscription is, for him, ‘an ideological manifesto 108 Essays and Articles dealing with the eternal ruler, the pax Achaemenidica guaranteed by Ahuramazda and his representative, the King of Kings’. On this reading, Xerxes is a faithful Zoroastrian but not a missionary or proselytiser. His expeditions against both Babylon and Greece had more central motives than the religious. Consider now the situation in Greece. As the siege of the Acropolis of Athens drew to its conclusion, the defenders despaired: some threw themselves from the cliff to their deaths, others took sanctuary in the temples, where they were sought out and slaughtered by the invaders. The Persians then looted everything of value and set fire to the Acropolis. Xerxes was able to despatch a messenger to Susa with the news that Athens had fallen and the mission of revenge for the burning of the temple in Sardis in 494 had been accomplished. But the next day, we are told (H. 8. 54–55), Xerxes summoned all the Athenian exiles in his own party, ‘and told them to climb the Acropolis and sacrifice victims in their own manner’. Herodotus was puzzled as to why he did this, and interpreted it as remorse for the sacrilegious acts of the previous day. Later interpreters, too, have found it hard to square this action with the supposed mission of Xerxes to wipe out other gods and impose Zoroastrianism in his dominions. But this supposed intolerance would be inconsistent, too, with many of his other acts, such as his sacrifices to Athena at Troy at the beginning of the expedition. In fact the evidence for Xerxes’ hostility to Greek gods is as shaky as that for his father’s supposed devotion to Apollo (especially at Didyma) and Artemis (at Ephesus). Greek and Roman authors, looking to the destruction of Greek sanctuaries, put it down either to the natural savagery and impiety of barbarians, or to a belief that the gods could not dwell in buildings of stone and must be liberated from their prisons: ‘Xerxes ordered the temples of the Athenians to be burned, because he thought that it was sinful for the gods, whose home is the whole world, to be shut in by walls’. The explanation seems to be the much simpler one that, where peoples surrendered and acknowledged Persian rule, 109 Richard Stoneman – Xerxes’ Persia their gods were spared; where they resisted, the gods were interpreted as being just as hostile as their worshippers, and were attacked equally as enemies. As so often, Greek over-interpretation has determined the view of centuries of later scholarship. Greek fury is easy to understand. The destruction of sanctuaries was one of the most shocking memories that the Greeks held of the Persian invasion, and the recovery of looted statues was an important part of Alexander’s war of revenge in the 330s. Stories attached themselves to many sadly remembered cult images, including that of Artemis at Brauron and that of Apollo at Branchidae (Didyma): Pausanias (8.46.3 and 3.16.7, cf. H. 6. 19) knew stories that both of these had been carried off by Xerxes, even though that at Branchidae had certainly during the earlier plunder by Darius’ army in 494. Statues that certainly were taken to Persia at this time include the bronze tyrannicides and the statue of Artemis Kelkaia. A marble statue of Penelope which was found in the treasury at Persepolis and smashed by Alexander’s soldiers is made of Thasian marble and may have been seized at an earlier time, or even have been presented by the islanders to the Persian king. Persepolis On his return from Greece, where his attempt to incorporate that land in his empire had been conclusively repelled, Xerxes devoted himself to the completion of the grand city of Persepolis, begun by his father. It was in the setting of the palace complex that was largely his creation that Xerxes chose to erect his major statement of purpose, XPh, the so-called daeva inscription. A short passage of this was quoted above; here is how the text begins: A great god is Ahura Mazda, who created this earth, who created yonder heaven, who created man, who created blissful happiness for man, who made Xerxes king. I am Xerxes the great king, 110 Essays and Articles king of kings. These are the countries of which I was king outside Persia; I ruled them, they bore me tribute. The law that was mine, that held them firm: Media, Elam, Arachosia, Armenia, Drangiana, Parthia, Areia, Bactria, Sogdiana, Chorasmia, Babylonia, Assyria, Sattagydia, Lydia, Egypt, Ionians who dwell by the sea and those who dwell beyond the sea, the Maka people, Arabia, Gandara, Indus, Cappadocia, Dahae, Scythians who drink haoma, Scythians who wear pointed hats, Thrace, the Akaufaka people, Libyans, Carians, Nubians. This resonant list may again be compared with that from the Vendidad. It is notable that Xerxes includes the mainland Greeks among those under his sway, despite recent events at Plataea. Compare also his Babylonian titulature, ‘king of the land of Persis, king of Media, king of Babylon, king of the lands’ a form created by Baylonian scribes on the model of the kings of Akkad, šar mat Šumer u Akkadi. Xerxes continues with his statement against the daevas, which has been discussed above, and a general assertion that ‘what has been done wrong, I have put right’: he concludes with praises of Ahura Mazda and by enjoining on ‘you, who shall be hereafter’ to obey the law of Ahura Mazda. This text was inscribed in Old Persian (two copies), Elamite and Babylonian on limestone slabs which were found in the garrison quarters at Persepolis; a copy in Old Persian alone was erected somewhere at Pasargadae, but when found it had been re-used to cover a drain. There is no knowing where the Persepolis version was originally placed. It was written not just for Xerxes’ subjects, but for posterity: but who was expected to read it? We cannot know since its original position is unknown. This quandary is just part of the wider problem of determining the purpose of this astonishing assemblage of buildings. Interpretations have ranged from a seasonal capital city to a temple complex with no residential elements, to a palace, to a ceremonial location for an annual procession of tribute-bearers to celebrate 111 Richard Stoneman – Xerxes’ Persia the New Year. Some of these are more plausible than others. What we can be fairly sure of is that, for Xerxes, the Persepolis he built was the expression of everything that Achaemenid royalty stood for: the king throned in splendour in his golden halls, watched over by the farr or royal fortune symbolised by the man in the winged disc; the assemblage of peoples bringing gifts from every corner of his vast empire; and above all the grace of Ahura Mazda by which the king exercised his rule. Around the edges of the palace were the settlements of the people who lived and farmed there, the workers who maintained the palace, while the houses of the nobles, as Diodorus tells us, filled the further edges of the platform. All the people who lived there derived their existence in some way from the palace. Xerxes was proud of his achievement. ‘Me may Ahura Mazda together with the gods protect, and my kingdom, and what has been built by me’ (XPb). 112 Essays and Articles 113 4. Farid Zoland – A Brief Introduction (by Homayun Alam) Farid Zoland – composer and poet of Persian pop music – is a native of Kabul, Afghanistan. Ethnically, he belongs to the Persian stock– who are called in the case of Central, East, and South Asia as Tajik. He stems from an entire artist family. His father was one of the renowned composer, classical singer and Persian poet Jaleel Zoland of Kabul. Even his both sisters Shahla and Soheila, and his brother Wahid, are all pop singers. Why is Farid Zoland important for this publication? What might be the link between him, Iran and the Iranian Cultural Sphere? Does culture, similar to art and music, play such an influential role? At the outset, one should know he migrated with a scholarship to Iran as he was 12 years old. There he continued going to school. Successively, attending school he enrolled himself in the Tehran Music Academy. So, the great part of his education was shaped in Iran. Then, due to the political situation he this time was forced to migration to the USA. As a result, at the advent of the Iranian revolution of 1979 he fled with the celebrated pop singers with whom he collaborated – Googoosh, Dariush, Ebi, Mahasti, Moein, Maziyar or Sattar – to the USA, Los Angeles. According to himself, he composed and wrote 245 number one hits for these mentioned Iranian pop singers. In the past few years (2005), one of his new offshoots was the Iranian pop singer “Rastin” based in the USA, who benefited of being supported personally by Farid Zoland. In 1994, Farid Zoland began to establish, with the collaboration of his close colleagues, the music company of Avang. Under the auspices of Avang and Farid Zoland, yet again, the production of Iranian pop music from favored pop singers, to count few voices such as Ebi, Siavash Ghomayshi or Bijan Mortazavi, resumed in a more fresh way. These singers, many others among them, had once again a platform of being heard and loved by their old as well as new fans. As a matter of fact, it might sound for someone unbelievable, but Farid Zoland never wrote any songs for Persian pop singers from his own generation and birthplace of Afghanistan. In his career he was seldom observed in Persian-speaking Afghan TV shows. But, since some years, he is participating actively in Iranian exile TV talk circles aired from the USA to express his ideas and complaints concerning copyrights of pieces composed, and that of his colleagues such as Ardalan Sarfaraz. In a transnational, -cultural and in this sense transcontinental way things changes at the recommendation of an innovative generation with new ideas. Farid Zoland’s music company Avang supported as well for the first time, in the year of 2007, the Iranian-born ethnic Persian singer Valy Hejazi. The latter’s parents are from Herat, Afghanistan. Valy Hejazi was also the one, who for the first time broke the linguistic wall in cultural terms between Iran and Afghanistan: He did not care much about his mixed or twofold accent, when singing with an Iranian Tehrani and a Persian accent from Herat. It might be the year of 2014, as far as the few records of Farid Zoland about his collaboration has been followed by this author with singers from Afghanistan that he invited Arash Barez to Dubai to compose an album for him: This rare occasion could take place as his sister Shahla asked Farid to do something for the talented singer and social activist Arash Barez. The latter, who is an Iranian-born ethnic Persian from Herat, was a participant at the famous music show of Afghan Star 114 Essays and Articles where the sister of Farid Zoland was one of the three or maybe four celebrity guests sitting in a judging panel and selecting the best singer for Afghanistan. In the same way, in 2016, a viral video with the Persian singer Basanti of Afghanistan was composed by Farid Zoland. In 2014, Farid Zoland went after living, studying and working in Iran and the USA, for the first time to Afghanistan. There, he put forward to create an institute for music, as he stated in an interview. Farid Zoland is a great contributor to contemporary Iranian pop music culture. Many Iranians confuse as experienced by this author, if they come across that he is by origin from Kabul and not from an Iranian city. The music composer Zoland skipped with his everlasting mindful art the political borderline between the two neighboring countries, which seems according to his interviews a centerpiece of his daily life. He contributed and created a space of culture with Persian features. He is the proof of the very notion of a glocalized transnational and -cultural artist by transgressing peacefully borderlines between countries and continents. Farid Zoland never made a division between the Persian language in the three countries of Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan, where it is the official national language. He is always speaking in the way of being an Iranian and uses the term as ‘we’ Iranians. Among many occasions, in a TV interview in Persian he was asked why he often travels to Dubai. His response was that of an Iranian nationalist or patriot: I am doing this for our Iranian talented youths. The reason why this author convinced himself to write a short introduction on Farid Zoland has a simple reason: The artist did not react to many requests by e-mail. With all due respect, it is necessary to articulate to the readership of such a present anthology about Farid Zoland as someone who influenced and enriched with his outstanding composes evergreen pop songs for many Iranians and as well as Persians from Afghanistan, Tajikistan, and beyond. One thing should not be forgotten about the deep expressed emotions of Farid Zoland, which is the ascertainable love for his own mother tongue: Persian. 115 Farid Zoland – A Brief Introduction (by Homayun Alam) Last of all, Farid Zoland was once asked in a live interview what his opinion is about the Persian language, its vast history and unknown future: “To my view, the Persian language has many foes, we should protect it.” 116 Essays and Articles 117 5. Hamid Reza Yousefi – The Neglected and Misunderstood Teachings of Sartosht Introduction Hamid Reza Yousefi gives a chronological overview on the influence of the teachings of Sartosht (Zarathustra). Beginning with Sartosht’s biography, which already reflects ideas of Sartosht’s teachings, he outlines a difference towards Abrahamic religions by thoroughly marking main aspects and, ideally, regarding Sartosht a founder of reason. Providentially, Yousefi regards philological expressions of Sartosht’s teachings mainly in the historical work called the Gathas. With reference to foreign terms, which are precisely connoted, he gives the reader a profound insight into Sartosht’s main principle of philosophy reflected in his concept of reason. The latter is realized through a discriminative-philosophical pathway of a reflective dialectic upon good and evil, merging in one’s reason’s outcome of good thoughts, speech and actions. Alongside the evident reason-based philosophy of Sartosht’s teachings, Yousefi, with the outset mentioned chronology, also offers further insight into adoptions of Sartosht’s mindset, revealed in western philosophy, art and poetry. Concluding that Sartosht was way ahead of his time, the author sees a crack in the discrimination of the chronology in philological research on Sartosht’s teachings and emphasizes a lack and therefore a necessity to the revision of such approach. The Discovery of Reason and Elementary Ethics (Zarathustra)1 Sartosht, the Persian aiwi-vashti, an Enlightenment philosopher, is wellknown in the Occident – he is called Zarathustra, Zoroaster, Zoroastra, Zoroastre or also Sarastro. His teachings, which aim to lead humanity towards a dialogical inspiration of freedom out of reason, remain to a great extent hidden and until now the view upon his subject has become largely distorted by scholarly debates. What is the basic teaching of Sartosht and what makes him a philosopher? Is it not the main task of philosophy, to search for answers, which take existential questions into account regarding the realities of a human life? Is a philosopher not a contemplator of culture, who seeks for paths to solve problems through the process of change? Sartosht lived and acted most probably after the middle of the 2nd century BC, during the ages that are marked by mythical thoughts and ritually and religiously motivated cruelties, nomadic lifestyles, struggles for survival and a rough human communicational converse. He vehemently rejects such a lifestyle. Sartosht pursues the goal to create a new consciousness of the ages through a reformatory philosophy, to fundamentally change the self-perception of a human and his relationship towards other individuals, towards nature and transcendency. By propagating the triad “Good Thoughts”, “Good Words” and “Good Actions”, he is willing to revolutionize the human mind of his time. According to this assumption, Sartosht’s teachings consist in the discovery of reason and ethics. The mainstay of the theoretical manifestation of his concept is not only the foundation of philosophy, enlightenment, freedom and civil society, but also lies in the formation of a life’s journey. My thoughts are geared to first work out the meaning of practical reason in Sartosht’s teachings, secondly, to address the triad of his prac- 1 For additional information about the philosophy of Sartoscht basic reference is made to Yousefi, Hamid Reza: Zarathustra – neu entdeckt. Theoretische und praktische Grundlegung einer verkannten Philosophie, Münster 2010. 118 Essays and Articles tical philosophy “Good Thoughts”, “Good Words” and “Good Actions”, to thirdly outline his philosophy and anthropology; fourth, to discuss his position towards polytheism and monotheism, fifth, to elucidate the claim to exclusivity and truth as well as tolerance and intolerance in his teachings and sixth to analyze the meaning of his teachings in past and present. Terminological Definitions As mentioned above, the name Sartosht appears in the literature in different ways. As European-western researchers normally derive their terms from Latin or Greek, they also aim at the Greek title “Zoroastra” regarding the name Sartosht and therefore call his teachings “Zoroastrianism”. Occasionally, the term “Zarathushtrism” is used. Also, frequently mentioned are terms like Mazdaism or Parziism.2 In Old Persian, the founder of the teachings is called “Sartosht Espantman”, or in short: Sartosht. Therefore, I prefer the following term-phrases: “Sartosht” as the proper name for the philosopher, “Sartoshtistic” in adjective usage, “Sartoshtdom” for the indication of his teachings and “Sartoshti” for the followers of the teachings. On the Life of Sartosht Sartosht’s life and lifestyle leave behind a straight trail of information, in addition mostly contradictory. Sartosht belongs to one of the Aryan peoples, who are mainly formed from tribes of Persians, Medes, Parthians, Chorasmians, Sogdians as well as Sakas, Arachosians und 2 New works indicate such expressions as well. Cf. Stausberg, Michael: Zarathustra und seine Religion, München 2005. 119 Hamid Reza Yousefi – The Neglected and Misunderstood Teachings of Sartosht Drangianas. They migrated in the course of the Indo-European mass migration since 2000 BC with other tribes from the area of what today is South Russia resp. Northern Iran towards Southeast, which is India, and to the West, thus towards an area which today belongs to the West of Iran. The Aryan peoples call their new homeland “Eran”, e. g. “Land of the Aryans”.3 The thoughts of the immigrated tribes are oriented towards the Indo-European East: language, myths and partly even philosophical viewpoints are connected with Vedic India and the other states of the Asean-Indo-European world. The dates of Sartosht’s ministry oscillate between 4000 and 600 BC. Some scholars verify his ministry between 700 and 600 BC.4 It is most likely that Sartosht lived and acted around 1600 BC. This dating follows the assumption that King Hammurabi, who (1728–1686 BC) was the first king to lead his understanding among states and nations according to the principles of the Sartoshtistic teachings, had most likely befriended Sartosht.5 On the Texts of Sartosht In order to explain Sartosht’s action-oriented philosophy and its symbolics as unaltered as possible, it is recommended to ascertain the “Gathas” as foundation of the analysis, since they are almost undisputedly claimed to be the originally written texts of Sartosht. The Gathas consist of 17 songs, 238 single pieces, 896 verses and 5560 words. They, on the one hand, reflect the understanding of the 3 The name “Iran” is stated for the first time as “Eran” 243 BC in Persian royal inscriptions. Cf. Brentjes, Burchard: Die iranische Welt vor Mohammed, Leipzig o.J., p. 7. 4 This corresponds to historical documents according to which the Persian King Cyrus had steadily referred to Sartoscht during his reign and who also called himself a Sartoschti. Cf. Ushidri, Djahangir: Glossen zum Mazdisna. Bedeutungswörterbuch zur Lehre Sartoschts (Persian), Tehran 1992, p. 33, and Hinz, Walther: Zarathustra, Stuttgart 1961. 5 Beyond all possibilities of datings, Sartosht’s life is but less interesting than the contents of his teachings. 120 Essays and Articles early Asean-Indo-European world; on the other hand, represent new forms of expressions for worlds, which are essential to Sartosht’s philosophy. From the already mentioned triad “Good Thoughts”, “Good Words” and “Good Actions” the word “Thoughts” should be specifically mentioned, which is an anthropological absolute term, and there with forms the basic motif and essential pillar of his philosophy. The Gathas moreover reveal some details of Sartosht’s life situation and his family environment. Sartosht did not choose the expression “Gatha” by himself for his work, but the term was given by the afterworld. The word derives from “ga”, which means to sing or recite.6 The chosen word “Gataha” or “Gatha” as “singing” in reference to Sartosht’s texts must be understood metaphorically. Although Sartosht had lived in a time when the religious speech ductus was common, the word neither refers to a metaphysical world, where the moods of the gods or phantasmagoria prevail and neither to esoteric epigraphs, but he composes short aphorism-like texts; in which the meaning of reason is presented by different facets. The chosen word “Gatha” therefore serves the notation of texts that deal with the controversy of reason. The Gathas were later integrated into scriptures that originated after Sartosht. They form a part of Yasnas, the first book of the Avestas.7 “Avesta” means “groundwork”, “foundation” or “protection and support”. Those laid down teachings build the Holy Scripture of the present Sartoshtis, who integrated Sartosht’s teachings into their religion.8 6 The Gathas bear the name “gasa” in Avestan language, and in Pahlavic language “gas”. The plural form is “gasan”. Cf. Ushidri, Djahangir: Glossen zum Mazdisna. Bedeutungswörterbuch zur Lehre Sartoschts (Persian), Tehran 1992, p. 402. In Sanskrit, the term “Gatha” means singing, song, combined speech. Cf. Mylius, Klaus: Wörterbuch Sanskrit-Deutsch, Leipzig 1975, p. 140. This shows the close relationship of the Avestan and Sanskrit being two former Indo-European languages. 7 In the scope of this article, the pre and post scriptures of Sartoscht shall remain ignored. 8 When quoting from the Gathas principally the translation of Abdolreza Madjderey from Persian to German serves as reference. Cf. Sartoscht: Die Gathas des 121 Hamid Reza Yousefi – The Neglected and Misunderstood Teachings of Sartosht The Teachings of Sartosht At the beginning of the second song of the Gathas, Sartosht describes circumstances in time and space in which he sees the geusch urvanem, the lamenting soul of creation in danger. He reports about anarchy, robbery, idolatry, horrible initiation rites and animal sacrifice, that are common in his time and describes the consciousness of this time as surrounded by “anger, violence, imperiousness, coldheartedness and audacity.”9 He asks why an unreflected nomadic presence and a combative and predatory mentality paired with magical imaginations and manifold obsessions dominate. The spiritual-mythological situation of this time is among others influenced by the Mithra cult or Mithraism. Alongside a sun god, mother goddesses are being worshipped and bloody animals like bulls are sacrificed.10 Sartosht’s esteem of all creatures also includes animals. He considers an intensive human-animal-relationship as important, and he especially regards farm animals rather as co-working companions than mere fatstock.11 In an early manifestation of a holistic thinking, Sartosht rejects those gods that appreciate creatures as sacrifice.12 Sartoscht, translated from Persian, and edited by Reza Madjderey, Nordhausen 2009. 9 Gatha, 29/1. 10 Cf. hereto Abbasi, Hassan: Von Mitra bis Mohammad. Neuere Forschung über die religiösen Entwicklungslinien Religion im Iran (Persian), Tehran 2004. 11 In other cultural regions also in Germany a number of surnames testify a close human-animal-relationship: names like Hase (Rabbit), Hirsch (Deer), Hahn (Rooster), Hund (Dog), Schwein (Pig), Rind (Beef), Katz (Cat), Vogel (Bird) are some examples. In many so-called modern societies, there are animal welfare organizations that thematize both human and animal rights. Sartoscht outclassed his time with his thougths. 12 The Sartoshtdom rejects every form of ritualism; the Gathas at no point legitimize it. The pre and post scriptures of Sartoscht like Yaschtha and Vandidad record a strong ritualism, which has nothing to do with the teachings alone. Yet, since foundation of Sartoscht and Avesta studies in Europe it has been alleged to the Sartoschtdom until today. Cf. Stausberg, Michael: Die Religion Zarathushtras. Geschichte, Gegenwart, Rituale (in three volumes), Stuttgart 2002 and 2004. Such assumptions lead to conclusions, which are empirically wrong and normatively deceptive. 122 Essays and Articles Sartosht seeks ways for the aesthetic education of man. Especially in the sendentariness and the implementation of urban societal structures does he see a feasible possibility for a soul’s refinement, since with this the basis for a stable community is laid and tribal as well as territorial disputes between nomads disappear. Sartosht assumes that idolatry and bloody sacrifice would then be abolished by themselves, in which a human being is unreflectedly exposed to the moods of imaginary creatures and their tyranny. The ancient rituals are replaced by a fire cult, which symbolizes the purification and chastity of the soul on its way to happiness and truthful action. Ancient beliefs yield the path of reason, which consists in good thoughts, speech and action. A novelty is the idea that one’s own luck is always reflected in the luck of the other. This reciprocity enunciates a bond between the human beings and creates a foundation for a dependence towards each other and the possibility of a dialogical understanding among them. Sartosht implements a transfer from ignorance to reason by which he does not accept unreflected opinions, but opens the question of the source and the consistency of the cosmos. He wants to determine his position in the cosmos: “Who was at the beginning the creator and the forefather of truth?”, he asks, “who determines the way of the sun and the stars”13, he wants to know, “who holds the earth down and the heavens high?” he asks further, “who is it, that created water and plants?”, he insists and finally asks the central question: “who is it that created the good thought?”14 Sartosht sees those questions of reason that seek the creator as main questions. He is anxious to understand the meaning of life reflexively and to determine it in a comprehensible manner. In his cosmology, Sartosht assumes the highest creator principle of the universe, which he calls the ‘Ahura Mazda’. In this, he finds the truth, which prefers the way of thought. It also means backing off from 13 Gatha, 44/3. 14 Gatha, 44/4. 123 Hamid Reza Yousefi – The Neglected and Misunderstood Teachings of Sartosht naive reflecting methods towards abstract thinking methods.15 By this principle, Sartosht goes into dialogue with the creator of the world and existence in the Gathas. Ahura Mazda is documented with a range of attributes like the ‘Immortal Saint’, ‘Ultimate’, ‘Righteous’, ‘Veridicality and good thought’ all showing that this principle yields and protects the Good.16 Opponent of this good power is a power of the evil, the ‘evil spirit’. Metaphorically, he speaks about light and dark. Truth and lie as well as light and darkness embody the understanding of good and bad. Light for Sartosht is like fire a symbol of purity, a characteristic of good creation. Under Sartoshtistic, thinking lies the problem of the source of the evil, because the principle Ahura Mazda cannot create and at the same time want something, which stands contradictory towards his nature. He cannot be the initiator of evil, since he would then himself be evil and therefore guilty. It is not Ahura Mazda that lets man go astray but a human being himself, who thinks and talks wrongly and hence acts accordingly wrong. Sartosht uses the term ‘Good Thoughts’ always in the light of truthfulness. He begins the Gathas with “every truthful action” […] “with wisdom and good thoughts” and resumes it with the “path of truthfulness.”17 The Gathas can be understood as an awareness of existence and a path towards khveschtan schnasih, self-awareness paired with admonitions that independently of every cultural tradition seek to level the path for reasonable action for the freedom and happiness of every human being. It seems impossible that the contrasting powers good and bad can become reconciled. Fact is, however, that with the cognition of these powers existent in the human mind and in the world Sartosht has come across a fundamental problem, which should become a subject in later academic research especially in psychology and psychoanal- 15 Similar questions were formed and systematically justified centuries later by Plato in his doctrine of forms and by his disciple Aristotle in his ‘Nicomachean Ethics’. 16 Gatha, 28/3–8. 17 Gatha, 28/1–2–4. 124 Essays and Articles ysis. These disciplines offer sufficient evidence of polar identities and good and bad qualities in a human constitution. As a human being is always existent in this charged relationship and struggles with dichotomous thinking, this binary thinking method inevitably becomes an ethical and moral question, which is reflected in later religions like Judaism, Christianity and Islam. In this main axis of time Sartosht precipitates a turn of consciousness in direction of enlightenment, freedom and happiness: “By the help of good thoughts, I will connect my soul with the heavens. With the certainty of a reward which Ahura Mazda has dedicated for this, I will teach human beings to walk the path of truthfulness as long as my powers last.”18 In this context, he speaks about his soul becoming one with the cosmos expressed in his concept of unity. However, it does not mean that his teachings are of exclusive cosmological dimension. At the beginning of the 10th song Sartosht admonishingly faces man: “Now I speak, listen carefully, those who want to listen and those who have come together from near and far, remember these speeches and keep them in mind that no other false teacher may turn your life into darkness and shall the liar do not lead you with his speech and incorrect belief into depravity!”19 The religious philosophy of Sartosht shows how he is concerned to answer the perpetual question concerning the enlightening of human existence. In the Gathas he asks the questions: Who am I? Whom do I belong to? Where did I come from? Where will I return? His teachings are linked with the achievement of perfection and the realization of Asha, the right law through the autonomy of an individual. Philosophical Belief in the Teachings of Sartosht In the fourth song of the Gathas which resembles a ‘creed’ by its phrasing, Sartosht emphasizes the freedom of choice of every human being 18 Gatha, 28/4. 19 Gatha, 45/1. 125 Hamid Reza Yousefi – The Neglected and Misunderstood Teachings of Sartosht as follows: “O Mazda, when you created us at the beginning through your thought with body, wisdom and conscience and […] gave us the ability of speech and action, you wanted us to choose our belief according to our will.”20 That he mentions the human will and his freedom of choice indicates the liberal way of thinking, which leads a human being through good thoughts, speech and action on a higher level of self-realization and reflection as well as a higher world and surroundings. A reflected self-encounter leads to a new self-discovery of man. This again is a practical path to his open-mindedness, upon which man may reflect himself and beyond. Hence, he becomes an ethical creature, which imposes himself to think, to speak and to act correctly. It is not his belief that serves as compass and motive in his life and the world but the claim of reason. Sartosht leaves the path of freedom and happiness exclusively to the individual and settles for further verses with reference to dangers and possibilities of freedom of choice and decision. His teachings based on the Gathas averts from belief; it merely occupies manifestations that resemble a harmonizing religion of reason, which the philosophers of the Middle Ages or ages of enlightenment in the 18th century Europe used to pursue. Sartosht does not regard himself as a founder of religion: “Like a singing poet”, he writes, “firm through truth and with the best thoughts […] I want to lead the people.”21 He sees himself always as aiwi-vasti, an enlightener, and zaotar, a reciter and intends not to approach a hermeneutical situation of humanity with a however nature belief but “with pure thoughts”22. Sartosht therefore seeks to enforce the revolutionary estrangement from every definitional determination of belief, which per se occupies a fundamental entity. Furthermore, he defines reason as a fundament of orientation for thoughts, speech and action, whereas for 20 Gatha, 31/11. 21 Gatha, 33/6. 22 Gatha, 49/1. 126 Essays and Articles example Abrahamic religions require renunciation of reason as fundamental to their belief. Sartosht conceives “an enlightening theory of ethics which is emancipated towards the suggestion of the autonomy of a person.”23 Herewith an early birth of the individual is presumed. For the first time in his progression, a human being is pointed to use his reason and asked if he on the basis of his reason-based action decides against or for a matter. The Discovery of Practical Reason Sartosht is a founder of practical reason, because he makes individuality, freedom of choice and truthfulness a basis of his triad, which were until then not seen and thematised as such. Practical reason is expressed in the triad through the seven-fold virtues of truth, justice, peacefulness, faith, humility, charity and diligence. The optimism of his practical reason lies in the certainty that good and virtuous thoughts, speech and action will prevail at the end and that it is worth to decide for the good thoughts. At the beginning of the Gathas Sartosht declares that he wishes to please “the soul of creation […] by reason and good thoughts”24. It is not his aim to bring salvation, but armaiti, serenity, as a process through reflected thoughts, through khshatra, harmony, with asha, the right law, which emerges from the being. The instrument for this is reason, which expresses in the aesthetics and dynamics of good speech and action. Into this reason, which always yields a self-legislation, Sartosht projects himself out of his Self and intends to share this self-empowerment with every human being. Thinking precedes reason in Sartosht’s teachings, out of which good speech and actions result. These are then inherently good if they are 23 Ghasempour, Morteza: Zarathustras Konzeption einer elementaren Ethik und Nietzsches Zarathustra-Rezeption, in: Ethik und Politik aus interkultureller Sicht, edited by Ram Adhar Mall, Amsterdam 1996 (131–145), p. 134. 24 Gatha, 28/1. 127 Hamid Reza Yousefi – The Neglected and Misunderstood Teachings of Sartosht based on truthfulness. Reason forms the main instrument of decision-making and determines criteria for the rationality of our views and actions. Reason and will are in a constant battle. ‘To be reasonable’ means to him to participate in creation by critical reason and at the same time to menitari, think effectively, with azatih karih, true selfdetermination and mard dostih to reach humanity. By the discovery of reason in the process of the human evolution, the perceptual world with all its ramifications should at the same time demythologized. This upheaval results in a new human perception and observation of the world, which fundamentally changes the self-image of individuals and their conception of man, their dealings with nature and surroundings, included.25 With this new reorientation, Sartosht enforces a turn in awareness of the self-image and episteme of man. Prior to his teachings, there was no religious or philosophical direction, which had thematised the triad as a fundamental composition of a being in peace and harmony as conceptually as he did. Until today, there is not one ethical concept that may survive without these premises. What does good and bad mean to Sartosht in the frame of his ethical reason? Does he really divide the world in good and bad? The principle of a ‘bad mind’ opposed to Ahura Mazda can, but must not mean, that Sartosht divides the world in two opposing spheres of good and bad. He declares a human being according to the Gathas innately as good, who however is or can be prevented by external powers from discovering and unfolding his moral nature in himself and through Asha the right law paired with good thoughts, speech and action to reach freedom and happiness. The good is inherent in man’s nature whereas the bad refers to something accidental. A single human being is according to this principle 25 In the 9th century Persian epicist and philosopher, Abolghasem Ferdosi compared reason referring to Sartosht with ‘an eye that lets all other things be seen and percepted without being aware of oneself ’. Cf. Ferdosi, Abolghasem: Shahname, 1999 Tehran, Vers 16–34. 128 Essays and Articles always caught in an inner battle between the powers of the good, which are manifoldly incarnated in the soul and those of the bad, which differently enunciate through external factors and influences. To kill someone, to lie, to commit adultery, to be unfaithful to oneself and to others, hence to think, speak and act badly, are evil deeds, which should always have to be avoided. Sartosht says: “Well, from the two heavenly twins, which manifested at the beginning in thoughts and assumption, one showed the good, the other the bad and between both the wise man will decide for the correct and truthful and not the ignorant man.”26 Since the principle of Ahura Mazda embodies the good and Sartosht only regards this as a means, a human being can join him and freely decide for the Ahura Mazda. This is the path of reason; and reason leads to freedom. A human being is yet also free to decide for the opposite of the good. This voluntary inner battle against the bad also affects the death of the individual. The walkway across the cinvant, ‘bridge of separation’, grants him at last the realm of light, of truth and of the good.27 Should the bad win the inner battle, man will fall into the realm of lies, the evil. Here, Sartosht emphasizes that good and bad bring about “life and non-living, that until the end of a being the deceptive entourage will have the most objectionable features and the righteous will attain the most wonderful virtues.”28 26 Gatha, 30/3. 27 Often discussed in reference to Sartoscht’s teachings is the question of how the funeral of deceased people took place. The Gathas show no reference to this question. Probably, the Persians buried their departed, kings and subjects in graveyards. The graves of Cyrus and Darius are evident. The placement of the dead in ‘towers of silence’ refers to the pre and post sartoschtistic period. Many Sartoschtis thought of themselves as hygienic because they sought to keep the earth pure from pollution. Also in present times, the remains of the dead should not pollute the earth, as they are today buried in a concrete sarcophagus. 28 Gatha, 30/4. 129 Hamid Reza Yousefi – The Neglected and Misunderstood Teachings of Sartosht Symbolism of Sartosht’s Teachings The philosophy of Sartosht is symbolically comprised in Faravahar. This symbolizes the human mind, which had existed before his birth and outlives time after death. The Faravahar can be explained as follows29: 1. The face embodies the anthropological anchorage of Sartosht’s teachings. 2. The wings each have three rows of main feathers, which symbolize the mentioned life maxims of good thoughts, speech and action. 3. The tail and control feathers also consist of three main feathers that symbolize evil thoughts, speech and action, which cause bad luck. 4. Two slopes are on both sides of the symbol and are the sepanta Mainyu, the good power and ankara Mainyu, the evil power. The good power shows in direction of the face and the bad power in the direction of the back. The wise man hence turns towards the good and turns his back on the evil. 5. The trunk, which is surrounded by a circle, symbolizes the eternity of the soul. 6. The hand showing upwards symbolizes the path to progress, which a human is able to pursue, while he holds a ring in his other hand, which symbolizes faith. These six anthropological-symbolic forms specify Sartosht’s anthropology and worldview as well as his practical philosophy. It should be said that Farawahar does not – like often assumed – represent the cosmic principle Ahura Mazda. According to the tradition for this, the symbol of light or fire was chosen.30 29 Cf. Ushidri, Djahangir: Glossen zum Mazdisna. Bedeutungswörterbuch zur Lehre Sartoschts (Persian), Tehran 1992, p. 374. 30 Many western researchers consider Faravahar unwaveringly as the symbol of Ahura Mazda. Cf. Koch, Heidemarie: Es kündet Dareios der König …, Vom Leben im persischen Großreich, Mainz 1992, p. 144. 130 Essays and Articles As a life and thought, process the Sartoshtdom elevates reason, truthfulness and individual decision-making in interaction with these six symbols as precondition for societal, family, religious and political cohabitation. Without these three alternatives, neither thought and speech nor action can be inherently good. Polytheism and Monotheism Polytheism and Monotheism are generally regarded as two contradictory opposites. While polytheism like in Sumerian, Babylonian, Assyrian, Greek or Roman religions simultaneously accept gods and idols as naturally co-existent, religions like Judaism, Christianity and Islam spring from a single god and do not tolerate the existence of other gods and goddesses. Considering that the principle of Ahura Mazda is responsible for the creation of heaven and earth, does not necessarily lead to monotheism or overcoming of polytheism. The Sartoshtistic teachings invite devotees of both religious forms to practice good thoughts, speech and actions. Sartosht refers to the general autonomy of individuals that are always at a crossroad and confronted with questions of what they want and what they should renounce. This involves the cognition of societal changeability and ethnic as well as individual variability. Such developments are regarded religiously-historical also found in Judaism, Christianity and Islam. Claim to Absoluteness and Truth as well as Tolerance and Intolerance It is not only the monotheistic religions that presume – in ‘contradiction’ to polytheistic assumptions – a claim to absoluteness and truth. This also applies to science, society and politics. In politics, it is the responsibility for war and peace, in science the responsibility for innovation and sanction and in society the responsibility for sympathy and 131 Hamid Reza Yousefi – The Neglected and Misunderstood Teachings of Sartosht antipathy. Sartosht’s teachings also reveal different forms of claim to absoluteness and truth as well as tolerance and intolerance. Towards a claim to absoluteness, which is closely connected to the claim to truth Sartosht states: “Mazda Ahura is the creator, […] and the source of truthfulness.”31 He sees a claim to absoluteness as follows: “None of you shall listen to the speeches and teachings of liars, because you would undoubtedly precipitate your family, community, city and state into misery. Resist him, remain firm and fight against him!”32 Sartosht regards Ahura Mazda the pinnacle of truth by emphasizing that resistance stands in accordance with the will of Ahura Mazda: “Who resists a liar with his own thoughts, words and deeds or teaches and shows a liar and his followers the right path undoubtedly fulfills Mazda’s will with solidarity.”33 One may ask of how the claim to absoluteness and truth is practically represented. Those kings who were influenced by Sartosht, like Cyrus, did not lead a single religious war – seen from a religious-historical perspective. From here, it can be concluded that this claim to truth and absoluteness is inclusive, whereas the exclusive claim to absoluteness of Christianity and Islam manifests externally and seeks to spread missionary. This philosophical interpretation of claim to truth and absoluteness is very important for tolerance and intolerance. The Gathas write: “Mazda Ahura will grant those sufficiency and immortality with its affectionate reign whose behaviour and words are in the light of good thoughts and the ultimate disposition founded on truthfulness.”34 Elsewhere, Sartosht again takes upon tolerance- 31 Gatha, 47/1. 32 Gatha, 31/18. 33 Gatha, 33/2. 34 Gatha, 47/1. 132 Essays and Articles relevant thoughts and regards religious enlightened humans as those who always favour insights of the good: “A pious man will spread truth with the wisdom of his speech, deeds and perceptions. Mazda Ahura will in the light of good thoughts gift a person with holy power.”35 This statement makes an autonomy of the individual and the relevance of his dignity visible. It is not about conversion, but the power of wise reason is emphasized, which is tolerant of its own accord. Gustav Mensching verifies this mindset as “substantial tolerance.”36 The armaity, harmony or tolerant viewpoint of Sartosht peaks when a certain action obviously harms the other. This happens when a human being because of freedom of choice listens to external appearances or accidents that cause evil. In the Gathas it says: “O wrong thinker, so you have by evil-thinking actions and with ugly thoughts, speech and action, as well as reign promises towards liars, lied and hindered them from a good and eternal life.”37 Sharply contoured borders of tolerance are obvious. Sartosht invites reasoning and hints at the dangers, which in the case of amenitar, irrationality, seduces man to bad thoughts, speech and actions. Insofar are his intolerant expressions in the Gathas – with the words of Karl Jaspers – a ‘loving battle’.38 A ritual is not replaced by another or completely abolished but the merits and the meaning of a reason-based lifestyle demonstrated. Sartosht regards the realization of tolerance in a harmony, which begins with wokhashatra, the control of one’s own will. The Sartoshtic tolerance is neither a question of creed or indulgence but a demand for insightful reason. Furthermore, the own inner harmony is a condition for the tolerance of the other. 35 Gatha, 51/21. 36 Mensching, Gustav: Toleranz und Wahrheit in der Religion (1955), Hamburg 1966, p. 18. 37 Gatha, 32/5. 38 Cf. Jaspers, Karl: Philosophie, Bd. II, Existenzerhellung (1932), Berlin 1956, p. 65. 133 Hamid Reza Yousefi – The Neglected and Misunderstood Teachings of Sartosht Philosophy of Nonviolence The interpretation of claim to absoluteness and truth as well as thoughts of tolerance and intolerance regards Sartosht’s teachings free from a missionary mindset. The irrationality of the ages is only changeable by an insightful reason. To implement his new reason-based orientation as life’s compass, Sartosht is a teacher and disciple-minded man at the same time. This is the main condition of every philosophical mindset. Sartosht not only strives questioning and answering to good thoughts, speech and action, but also presents with a passionate seeking spirit the grammar of observation of the self and the world, which seeks to overthrow societal circumstances. Thereby, he asks the cosmic principle for help: “O Mazda Ahura, approach with your voice my wisdom and my thoughts, with whose help I […] forever protect the truthfulness and the good thoughts, teach me […] how at the beginning ‘being’ and ‘creation’ came into existence!”39 These questions belong to the perpetual discussion fields of philosophy. Sartosht demonstrates through the directness of his questions how important truthfulness is for the learn process and the practice of nonviolence in thoughts and action, because he admits through astonishment and his cluelessness that he does not know himself. The conversations with the principle of Ahura Mazda are also a dialogue between “two souls in one breast” that lead an existential communication, an inner monologue with a good ending. Sartosht asks why and for what he was created who granted him his being.40 His philosophy of nonviolence shows itself when the “thinking in peace” is regarded the “best way of heavenly pride”.41 He would thereby choose “the purest of thoughts, whether in the light of truthfulness our earth- 39 Gatha, 28/11. 40 Gatha, 29/1. 41 Gatha, 29/1 and 43/15. 134 Essays and Articles ly life is strengthened, piousness and heavenly power enlighten our being and good thoughts lead our actions to good reward.”42 Sartosht sees the effective possibility in reasonable thinking, speech and action to get into conversation with people that think differently to induce a liberating change: “So it shall be, that freedom and brotherhood which is the wish of all of us to get to us […], so that everyone who in the light of good thoughts and his perception acts accordingly, gets to enjoy the carrot.”43 As Sartosht makes it clear, he sees the realization of this concern only in one basic change of thinking and in the perceptive mechanism in form of an eternal process, as only such thoughtful reorientation would guarantee nonviolence. The Meaning of Sartosht’s Philosophy Yesterday and Today In Old Persia, the kings Hammurabi, Cyrus, Darius, Xerxes I. and Schapur I. followed Sartosht’s philosophy and thereby manifested governmental structures that are characterized by the early introduction of a few human rights. The epigraphs of the kings speak of religious freedom, property rights, maintenance of cultural and religious peculiarities and even about the equality between man and woman.44 The time of the Sasanid rule (225–651) is regarded as Renaissance of Sartosht’s teachings. During this time the Gathas, whose language threatens to fade into obscurity, are put together with other scriptures, interpreted in Pahlavian language, and embedded into the Avesta. The undifferentiated reference to Sartosht’s scriptures and those of later period is the reason why the difference between the original and later additions is no more evident. The teachings of this period experience changes with consequences because the Sasanids align them mono- 42 Gatha, 43/16. 43 Gatha, 54/1. 44 Such inscripts are also in the ruins of Persepolis and Pasargade. Vgl. Ashtiani, Djalaleddin: Sartoscht, Mazdisna und Regierung (Persian), Tehran 1978. 135 Hamid Reza Yousefi – The Neglected and Misunderstood Teachings of Sartosht theistically and level them to a state religion, which is no longer connected with the tolerant mindset of the original teachings.45 Under King Yazdgerd the Islamification of the Persian reign takes place. Resistance of the Sasanids are mostly defeated, Yazdgerd is killed in the year 651 in Marw. This seals the fate of Iran, which becomes a part of the arabic-islamic Umayyad reign in 660. The civilizing heritage of Sartosht however remains alongside the philosophy and religion of Islam melted with the Iranian history of mind and mediates especially in the Iranian-Islamic philosophy and science further impulses. The works of philosophers like Shahabeddin Yahya Sohrevardi and Mollah Sadra are some examples. Sohrewardi envelopes the ‘philosophy of enlightenment’ and is as ‘Sheych ol Eshraqh’, known as a teacher of enlightenment. He uses the Old Persian philosophical terminology of Sartosht. It finds its culmination in his Old Persian cosmology and light metaphysics, which he connects to Quran expressions of light.46 His concept is a mixture of Persian, Indian, Greek and Islamic philosophy. Sartosht’s demand for the postulate of reason, which encompasses the entire human life through the triad of good thoughts, speech and action, is constituted in many later philosophical traditions in different epochs in the comparison and understanding of cultures. Many philosophers – especially Laozi, Buddha, Confucius and Aristotle – have in similar ways passed impulses onto humanity, which are until now continuing effective. The unfolding of Socrates’ midwifery on the famous conversation with the slave Menon is comparable with Sartosht’s attempt to renew the consciousness of humanity. Plato, who refers to Sartosht many times and calls him his teacher, forms with his dialogues through Socrates a philosophically-based foundation of the dialogical anthropology and 45 For evolving dissonances, cf. Mensching, Gustav: Toleranz und Wahrheit in der Religion, 1966. 46 Cf. Sohrawardi, Shahabeddin Yahya: Hekmat ol Eshragh (Persian: philosophy of enlightenment), Tehran 2004. In the Quran, light stands among others for knowledge and life. Light and being in the thinking of Suhrawardi mean the same. 136 Essays and Articles Enlightenment. Even the famous conversation between the Greek-Bactrian King Menandros and the Buddhist monk-philosopher Nagasena shows the relevance of reason. At last, the period of Enlightenment in Europe represents an important epoch. The meaning of reason, the concept of self-determination and the relevance of individuality in society as well as in human life manifested in Europe only after the French Revolution. This topic accompanies a human at the stage he is and while becoming aware of his existence. The studies of Jean-Paul Sartre’s ‘dialectical reason’, Karl Jaspers’ reason as ‘infinite will for communication’, Morad Farhadpours ‘depressive reason’, Max Horkheimer’s ‘instrumental reason’, the ‘communicative reason’ of Jürgen Habermas, Mohsen Kadivar’s ‘Book of reason’ and Wolfgang Welsch’s ‘transversal reason’ each witness the process of Enlightenment, which inseparably links Sartosht’s reason as an anthropological moment of unity with Europe.47 The discovery of reason and ethics in the process of the human civilization belongs to the most important achievements of world history. Sartosht’s contribution to this far and rocky road is obvious. In his teachings, Sartosht speaks of the Indo-European peoples that live in the Persian region, though he actually addresses humanity. He determines borders in the range of an anthropological constant, which applies beyond cultural borders and cannot be reduced to a certain nation or cultural region. Reason articulates itself as an anthropological concern, which exceeds every concept of time and space. Through 47 Cf. Jaspers, Karl: Philosophie, Bd. II, Existenzerhellung (1932), Berlin 1956; Sartre, Jean-Paul: Kritik der dialektischen Vernunft, Frankfurt/Main 1967; Habermas, Jürgen: Theorie des kommunikativen Handelns (in two volumes), Frankfurt/Main 1981; Horkheimer, Max: Zur Kritik der instrumentellen Vernunft, Frankfurt/Main 1985 und Welsch, Wolfgang: Vernunft. Die zeitgenössische Vernunftkritik und das Konzept der transversalen Vernunft, Frankfurt/Main 1996; Kadivar, Mohsen: Daftare Aql (English: Book of Reason). Gesammelte Aufsätze zum Thema Philosophie und Theologie (Persian), Tehran 1998, and Farhadpour, Morad: Aqle Afsorde (English: depressive reason). Überlegungen über die moderne Vernunft (Persian), Tehran 2008. 137 Hamid Reza Yousefi – The Neglected and Misunderstood Teachings of Sartosht all times on earth Sartosht seeks with his triad the moment of unity of thoughts in a diversity of the fates of the peoples. Sartosht in the Mirror of History and Research Many outstanding personalities of the cultural scene in Europe seem to have approached Sartosht’s teachings and understood its core. Mozart extols Sartosht in his opera ‘The Magic Flute’ to a main figure though he gives him the name ‘Sarastro’. He paves the way to wisdom and happiness as a path through cathartic ‘burning heat’ and lets Sarastro speak: “In these holy halls man does not know revenge.”48 In Johann Wolfgang von Goethe’s ‘Faust’ Mephistopheles, who imagines being a “part of that power which always wants the evil and creates the good”49, bear a resemblance to the ‘evil spirit’ resp. the ‘ruler of darkness’. Also, worth mentioning is Friedrich Nietzsche’s art of understanding, honouring and mythologizing Sartosht in his work ‘Thus Spoke Zarathustra’ in his own way.50 Rudolf Steiner belongs to the rare philosophers of his time who tried to understand Sartosht’s thoughts of its own accord. According to Steiner, Sartosht is “one of the great leading personalities, who gave the stimuli for great cultural progress of humanity”. Sartosht pursues the goal to strengthen the “power of cognition of a human being”51, on the one hand, in order to generally create a new horizon of consciousness of humanity, and, on the other hand, to unfold the principle of completeness in a human being. Many statures or teachings have experienced dissemblances, distortions, mythologizations, falsifications through the afterworld. The reasons are romantic-exotical motifs, the simple misjudgment or the 48 Cf. Mozart, Wolfgang Amadeus: Die Zauberflöte (1791), Stuttgart 1991, 1. Aufzug 18. und 19. Auftritt sowie 2. Aufzug 1. 10., 11. und 12. Auftritt. 49 Cf. Goethe, Johann Wolfgang von: Faust. Urfaust – Faust I und Faust II, München 2006, Zeile 1335 f. 50 Cf. Nietzsche, Friedrich: Also sprach Zarathustra. Ein Buch für Alle und Keinen (1897), Frankfurt/Main 2007. 51 Cf. Steiner, Rudolf: Zarathustra, in Die Drei, 5. Jg., Heft 10, Berlin 1925/6, pp. 2. 138 Essays and Articles deliberate distortion of a teaching. These motifs have until today also cast the veil upon Sartosht’s philosophy of life and society, anthropology and his religious philosophy. Studies of the world history of thinkers designate Sartosht as the first historical figure who anticipated the role of thinking and reason as an instrument of truthfulness, freedom, humanity, humanism and happiness. However, his teachings are regarded by many academics in the west, including North America as a mere religion, a mere research topic, or an object of philological debates, but not as a lively religion, a practical philosophy and reason of ethics or a path for life and thoughts. Many writings that deal with Sartosht’s historical authenticity or research papers focus writing on the existing research. These works shifted Sartosht’s cultural sociology and philosophy in the background, that hence, any European-western religious studies scholar has not seriously and adequately thematised these. It is significant that the so-called “Zarathustradom researchers” are, since the beginning of the 18th century, debating on which philological analyses and interpretation of the Gathas and Avesta are most applicable, while there is no exact differentiation between Sartosht’s scriptures resp. the pre and post Sartoshtistic works. At this, the important requirement of localizing the tertium comparationis in the own culture remained overseen. Furthermore, the usage of European terms by western religious scholars contributed to an imprecise state of research. Hence, the Greek expression ‘Zoroastra’ and the linked terms were kept without reason and were not replaced by the Old Persian terms. Because of wrong transmissions and the mentioned mixing of scriptures the name Sartosht is connected to attributes like magician, cowworshipper, sacrificer, poet, prophet, cultic founder of religion and similar names.52 In this respect, Avesta becomes the “Bible of the Parsi”, 52 Cf. Geldner, Karl F. (Hrsg.): Avesta – Die heiligen Bücher der Parsen (in three volumes), Stuttgart 1885–1895; Bartholomae, Christian: Altiranisches Wörterbuch, Berlin 1904; Herzfeld, Ernst: Altpersische Inschriften (English: Archaeological Information from Iran), Ergänzungsband 1, Berlin 1938; Humbach, Helmut: Die Gathas des Zarathustra (in two volumes), Heidelberg 1959, and Lommel, Her- 139 Hamid Reza Yousefi – The Neglected and Misunderstood Teachings of Sartosht the Moobadan, Sartoshtic theologists, called ‘priest’ without discriminating that the Moobadans do not maintain celibacy.53 In addition, when Sartosht is called a ‘reformator’, then from a Lutheran association, which definitely does not make his concept.54 The meaning of philological research should not be denied, in this case, however, it has, in Europe, rather led to misjudgment, distortion and mythologization of the historical Sartosht and his teachings.55 This is mainly based upon the applicability of the own perspective, although Old and New Persian offer terms which make it easier to deal objectively with. Such a conceptual framework is not used because the European-western science rarely deals with research results of new Iranian Sartosht and Avesta researchers like Ebrahim Purdawud, Bahram Faravaschi Djalaleddin Ashtiani, Djalil Dustkhah, Hossein Vahidi or Djahangir Ushidri.56 Yet, to include such results is inevitable and is essential in the European-western tradition to overcome their present provinciality in research areas. man: Die Gathas des Zarathustra, Stuttgart 1971. Even the newest studies about Sartosht and his teaching hardly exceed the state of European research of 300 years back. An example is the wrong premises about ritualism stated by Stausberg, cf. Stausberg, Michael: Zarathustra und seine Religion, München 2005. 53 Hereto cf. the debate between Georg Hüsing and Christian Bartholomae about the expression ‘Zoroastra’. Cf. Hüsing, Georg: Die Iranische Überlieferung und das arische System, Leipzig 1909, p. 126. 54 Cf. Farahvaschi, Bahram: Persisch-pahlavisches Wörterbuch (Persian), Tehran 1967. 55 On history, structure, misjudgments, error of translations in the European-western Avesta research, which have led to false interpretations, cf. Madjderey Abdolreza: Was also sprach Sarathustra wahrlich? Köln 2000, p. 168. 56 Cf. Ashtiani, Djalaleddin: Sartoscht, Mazdisna und Regierung (Persisan), Tehran 1953; Purdawud, Ebrahim: Yaschtha (in two volumes in Persian language), Tehran 1960; Farahvaschi, Bahram: Persisch-pahlavisches Wörterbuch (persisch), Tehran 1967; Vahidi, Hossein: Gatha (Persian), Tehran 1987; Dustkhah, Djalil: Avesta. Die ältesten Gesänge und Texte der Perser (in two volumes in Persian language). It takes the actual researches into account, Tehran 1990; Ushidri, Djahangir: Glossen zum Mazdisna. Bedeutungswörterbuch zur Lehre Sartoschts (Persian), Tehran 1992, and Madjderey Abdolreza: Was also sprach Sarathustra wahrlich?, Köln 2000. 140 Essays and Articles However, what is the spirit and purpose of research on Sartosht and Avesta? It will be the task of a comprising study to clear out historical prejudices and to examine presently existing European-western research works, asking how they understand and compare Sartosht and his philosophy, which methods they apply, which goals they aim at and where they embed their tertium comparationis. Sartosht is a stature of humanity, which will always remain bound to history of reason and ethics even though the dimensions of his teachings have until now not been adequately acknowledged in Europe. The European-western Sartosht and Avesta studies stand before a long path, which will place the historical uniqueness of Sartosht from the sleeve of mythologization into the center of research. 141 Hamid Reza Yousefi – The Neglected and Misunderstood Teachings of Sartosht 143 6. Nahid Morshedlou – The Ghaznavid’s Heritage Beyond the Greater Iran Seven hundred years ago, Persian became the language of literature, science and culture during the Sultanate period in India. But the early history of Persian in Indian subcontinent is shrouded in mystery. Some scholars had said when Muḥammad Ibn Qāsim marched to India; Iranian soldiers in his army had already brought Persian language into India. They also believed that the march of Mahmud of Ghazni into India as the main factor for the spread of Persian language and literature in India. In fact, Persian entered into Indian subcontinent with the advent of the Muslims in the country. But the most important and visible traces of Persian poetry in Indian Subcontinent returns to the Ghaznavid dynasty and the Indo-Iran contact began in 11th century A. D. At that time “Persian language and literature as the language of the Ghaznavid court, gradually achieved the status of the most prestigious language of an increasingly large region, whose subjects were mostly Indian and the rulers predominantly Turkish.”57 It is obvious that the date of entry of Persian language into the Indian subcontinent precisely would be some time before Mahmud of Ghazni and his successors. But standard development of the language took place since Mahmud of Ghazni arrived in Indian subcontinent. This article explores a part of Persian poetry under the shelter of Ghaznavids beyond the Greater Iran, in Lahore. 57 http://www.iranicaonline.org/articles/india-xiv-persian-literature-in-india. According to ancient sources Amir Sabuktigin, Mahmud’s father was the first Ghaznavid who came to India: » پدر سلطان محمود غزنوی – پس از بهرام گور که هیچ یکی از ملوک بهندوستا نیامد – او در سال سه صد و شصت و هفت هجری لشکر بر هند کشید و آویزش ها کرده بغزنین بازگشت . «58 In the early Eleventh century, Mahmud of Ghazni launched seventeen expeditions into South Asia. He was the most famous ruler of Ghazni dynasty who formed the kingdom of Ghaznavid in India and achieved remarkable conquests and victories. He brought a further consolidation for Ghaznavid dynasty in India. His interest in literature and Persian poetry led the majority of scholars, writers and poets to come to Lahore, the capital of the Ghaznavids in Indian subcontinent and receive his patronage. In Ghaznavid period, around thirty-two59 rulers reigned in India whose language was Persian. They encouraged people to learn Persian, especially to compose their poems in Persian. Tilak Ibn Jay Sean Hajam, Sondar Nat and thousands displaced army and other agents without doubt spoke and wrote in Persian at that time.60 Tilak ibn Jay, personal secretary of Khwaja Ahmad Hassan Maymandi, was living in the Ghaznavid court. He knew Persian very well because language skills of Persian were necessary for interpreters and secretaries at that time. According to historical evidence, Lahore, the capital of Ghaznavids saw pomp and prosperity at Ghaznvid’s time. Lahore, the first center of Persian language and literature in India was famous as Little Ghazni or the second Isfahan.61 In the Ghaznavid period, too many people such as scholars, poets, writes, etc. migrated from the Greater IranM into Lahore. Some great poets of Lahore were: Abu Abdullah Nokti, 58 Shaikh Abu al-Fazal ibn Mubarak, Ain-i-Akbari, Kalkatte, 1867, Vol 3, p. 159. 59 Anushe. Hasan, Danesh Nameh Adab Farsi dar Hind, Vezarat-e Farhang wa Ershed-e Islami, Tehran, Vol 4, p. 28. 60 Syed ʿAbdullah, Adabiyat-i farsi dar miyan-i hindovan, Entesharat Adabi wa Tarikhi-ye Moqufat-e Dr. Afshar, Tehran, 1371, p. 24. 61 Ibid, p. 7. 144 Essays and Articles Abdol Faraj Runi, Masud Sad-i Salman, Serajuddin ibn Menhaj Lahori, Abu Jafar Mohammad ibn Ishaque Alvashi, Hamiduddin Masud ibn Shali Kubi, Seqattuddin Yousef ibn Mohammad Darbandi, Ziauddin ibn Abol Fotouh Heravi, Ahmad Lahori, Hamiduddin Lahori, Molla Lahori, Molla Shiri Lahori. Mohammad ibn Osman Otbi Kateb: He was a historian and a poet in Mahmud’s court. He accompanied Sultan Mahmud in all the battles in India. He has recorded Mahmud’s wars in details in his book. Mohammad Aufi has recorded some of his poems in Tazkira-ye Lobabol Albab56: ای دوست ، عاشق از بر تو زار می رود دل پر ز رنج و حرست و تیامر می رود بی یار و دل منم ، خنک آن کس که در جهان با دل همی خرامد و با یار می رود خوبی همه به مجلس تو آید ای عجب آری سزا به نزد سزاوار می رود *** حلقه حلقه مشک دارد بر کنار ارغوان توده توده الله کارد بر کنار ضیمران تیره گشت از خد او ماه دو هفته بر فلک تیره گشت از خد او رسو سهی در بوستان گه سخن گوید به مجلس چون عطارد بی دهان گه کمر بندد به میدان همچو جوزا بی میان جز زنخدانش شنیدستی ز سیم ساده گوی غیر زلفش دیده ای از مشک سوده سولجان62 These lines also have attributed to another poet. But it is in his name in the Tazkira Darvish Hosein-i Nuri Kashani.63 Gradually favorable conditions of Ghaznavids court paved the way to promote Persian poetry in Lahore. Sultan Mahmud of Ghazni’s son, Masud I continued his father’s legacy in India. He was famous as a patron of Persian poets. Poets began to write odes in his praise, which still exist: روی آن ترک نه روئیست و بر او نه برست که برین نار بیارست و بر آن گل بربست بطرازی قد و فرخیزی زلفین دراز رستخیز همین خوبان طراز و خزرست گر بجای مه و خورشید بود یار مرا اندرین معنی هم جای حدیث و نظر است 62 Hedayat. Reza Qoli Khan, Majmaul Fosaha, Entesharat-e Amir Kabir, Tehran, 1381, Vol. 1, p. 485. 63 Ibid. 145 Nahid Morshedlou – The Ghaznavid’s Heritage Beyond the Greater Iran مهر او را دل ما مستقر است ، این نه عجب آن شگفتست کجا ، مستقر او سقرست و آن عجب تر که طلسمیست هوا را که همی بنسوزد اگر او را چو سقر مستقرست ملک عادل مسعود ، خداوند ملوک که به فضل از ملکان بیشرت و بیشرتست » ابوعبدالله روزبه نکتی « Mawdud Ibn Masud and his sons, Farrokhzad and Ebrahim continued their raids into India. Shirzad, son of Sultan Masud bin Ibrahim became viceroy of Lahore in 1099 A.D. The level of literary creativity was just as high under Ebrāhīm and his successors up to Bahrāmšāh, with such poets as Abu‟l-Faraj Rūnī, Sanāʾī, Ali Fathi, Mahmoud Varraq ʿOṯmān Moḵtārī, Masʿūd-e Saʿd-e Salmān, and Sayyed Ḥasan Ḡaznavī. Abu Abdullah Ruzbeh Lahori Nokti: He was a poet in the reign of Masud ibn Mahmud of Ghazni. Schimmel has mentioned him as the first poet who composed Persian poetry in India subcontinent.64 He has composed some odes, fragments and quatrains. His poems were lyrical and rhythmic. » ابوعبدالله روزبه بن عبدالله النکتی اللوهوری – تخلصش : نکتی … تقریر نکت نکتی کاری دراز است ، چه نکات لطیف او از حد و عد افزونست و نقود شعر او لطیف و موزون . «65 Some of his poetry from Lobabol Albab66: برنگس بنگری چون جام زرین بزیر جام زرین چشمه چشمه تو گوئی چشم معشوقست مخمور ز ناز و نیکوئی گشته کرشمه His fragment in the explanation of Manjaniq: چه چیزست آن که یکسو نردبانست دگر سوی راست همچون پای شیطان رس زانو بسان فرضه ی تیر ازو آویخته خرطوم پیالن دو پشک آهنین بینی مر او را زده آن پشک را بر پای دیوان بر آن خرطوم وی صد زلف بینی همه برتافته چون زلف جانان چو عشاقش بدو انبوه گردند بگیرد هر یکی یک زلف را زان بیندازد یکی سندان محکم شود هر کس ز بیم و هول لرزان 64 Schimmel. Annemarie, Islamic Literatures of India, Otto Harrassowitz Verlag, Wiesbaden, 1973, p. 66. 65 Aufi. Mohammad, op. cit., Vol 2, p. 290. 66 Ibid. 146 Essays and Articles Masud Razi: He was another well-known poet in the court of Masud ibn Mahmud of Ghazni. According to Tarikh e Baihaqi, he was exiled to India where he lived until the end of his life: » امیر رضی الله عنه به جشن مهرگان نشست ، روز سه شنبه بیست و هفتم ذوالحجه و بسیار هدیه و نثار آوردند و شعرا را هیچ نفرمود و بر مسعود رازی خشم گرفت و فرمود تا او را به هندوستان فرستند که گفتند که او قصیده گفته است و سلطان را در آن نصیحت ها کرده و در آن قصیده ، این دو بیت بود: مخالفان تو موران بودند و مار شدند برآر زود ز موران مار گشته دمار مده زمانشان و زین بیش و روزگار مرب که اژدها شود ار روزگار یابد مار این مسکین سخت نیکو نصیحتی کرد هرچند فضول بود و شعرا را با ملوکان این نرسد. « آن زلف نگر بر رخ آن در یتیم چون بنگری چونانک از غالیه جیم وان خال بر آن عارض چون ماه شیم همچون نقطی ز مشک بر تخته ی سیم67 His Quatrains in description of apple: زنخدان های ترکانست گویی فراز شاخ بر آن سیب خندان مغاکی در میان هر یک آنک چون آن چاهی که باشد بر زنخدان68 His Quatrains: ای دل برنده هر چه توانی همی کنی میدان فراخ یافته گو زن حاال عشق تو را وفا ز تو بیش است زان که تو از من جدا شدی و نشد عشق تو جدا69 Abul-Faraj Runi: He was a founder of Islamic poetry in India. He spent most of his time in Lahore. He was famous because of his odes in praise of poems for Ibrahim Ibn Masud. Masud-i Sad counted his poems in the apex of poetry: بوالفرج ، ای خواجه آزاد مرد هجر و وصال تو مرا خیره کرد ای ، به بلندی،سخن شاعران هرگز ، مانند تو ، نادیده مرد Anvari, a famous Persian poet of odes has admired Runi: 67 Aufi. Mohammad, op. cit., p. 68 Ibid. 69 Ibid. 147 Nahid Morshedlou – The Ghaznavid’s Heritage Beyond the Greater Iran در متانت خیل اقبالت چو شعر بوالفرج وزعذوبت مرشب عیشت چو نظم فرخی Abul Faraj’s Diwan includes odes, fifty-seven Quatrains, eighteen fragments and three lyrics. He has composed odes more than other forms. Some of them are very short in comparison with his other odes. Most of his odes begin with praise. Some of them are without Tashbib. Amir Khosrow also has these types of odes. Runi is a follower of Epicurean philosophy; pleasure as the chief goal in life. Neither past nor future, now is an important moment. He would not be sad because of past or future: ای دل مخور اندیشه فردا پیشی نزدیک مشو به غم ز دور اندیشی با عقل مگیر تا توانی خویشی کز لهو تو را عقل دهد درویشی *** تا یک نفس از حیات باقیست مرا در رس هوس رشاب و ساقیست مرا کاری که من اختیار کردم این بود باقی همه کار اتفاقیست مرا Runi has lots of exaggerations in his odes. He raises the earth to the sky or put a saint man in a superior position to the angels. Sometimes he has raised the king’s character as much as an angel: که شخصی است یا رب که روح القدس نیایی فزون از کاملش کامل Runi also has composed quatrains. In his quatrains, there are no sophistication and perfection, which we see in his odes: در عشق تو خوشدلی ز من بیزار است رو شاد نشین که بر مرادت کار است تو کشنت من می طلبی وین سهلست من وصل تو می جویم و این دشوار است70 *** سورتی کند رو ، یک آیت را کرد باید همی بسی تکرار آخر نام تست ، اول آن ای نکو سیرت نکو کردار آخر نام تو ترا بدهاد اول نام تو چو من بسیار71 70 Hashemi, Ahmad Ali. Tazkira Makhzan ul Gharaib, Lahore, 1970, pp. 34–35. 71 Shams Qais Razi, Almojam Fi Maeir-e Ashar-i Ajam, Mohammad Qazvini, Tehran, Zavvar, 1360. 148 Essays and Articles Khajeh Salman Lahori: He was the father of Masud Sad-i Salman. He was one of the nobles in the Ghaznavid court. When Majdud Ibn Masud became the ruler of India, Khajeh Salman went to Lahore with him72. گر بگذاری مراد گر بنوازی از کوی تو نگذرم ببازی بازی چون باد به پایت اندر آیم به مثل گر چو خاکم ز در برون اندازی73 Bahram Shah was an active champion who made myriad of raids into India. He went to India after he lost in a battle at the hands Alauddin of Ghor. Bahram Shah had a consuming passion for Persian literature. His love for Persian literature was a reason for lots of poets and writers to gather in his court. Sa’dat ibn Masud Sad-i Salman: He was Masud Sa’d’s son. He was living during the reign of Bahram Shah of Ghazni: همزاد رخ نگار ما ، بوست نه گل زین روی رخ نگار نیکوست نه گل ما را رخ دوست باید ای دوست نه گل زیرا گل چشم ما رخ اوست نه گل74 *** آن قوم که ایشان ره احرار سپردند احوال جهان باطل و بازیچه شمردند محنت زدگان را به کرم دست گرفتند چون دست گرفتند بران پای فرشدند ایشان همه رفتند و جهان جمله به مشتی زین ناکس نامردم نامرد سپردند قومی همه نوکیسه و نو کاسه که از بخل نام کرم از نامه هستی بسرتدند زآن قوم که ما دیدیم امروز کسی نیست گویی که به یکباره همه پاک مبردند این نیز عجب تر که هم از بخت بد ما با خود همه چیزی چو برفتند بربدند75 Masud Sa’d Salman: He was a poet in Mahmud ibn Ibrahim’s court. His odes and fragments are full of new and pleasant themes. His odes were in praise of kings and rulers, the Unity, asceticism and abandonment of the world. He gave up composing odes in the last years of his life. Amir Muizzi, Sanai, etc. have praised Masud in their odes. Most of the 72 Valeh Daghestani. Aligholi Ebn Mohammad Ali, Tazkira-ye Riyaz ul-shoʿara, Pajuheshgah-e Olum-e Ensani wa Motaleat-e Farhangi, Tehran, 1390, vol. 1, p. 221. 73 Soheili Khansari.Ahmad, Hesar-e Nay, Ketab Forushi Islamiye, p. 31. 74 Sarhang Ḵwāja ʿAbd-al-Rašid, op. cit., p. 183. 75 Zahuruddin Ahmad, op. cit., pp. 48–49. 149 Nahid Morshedlou – The Ghaznavid’s Heritage Beyond the Greater Iran master poets have imitated him and have composed some poems by way of Tazmin of Masud’s poetry. Masud himself had imitated Rudaki, Shahid Balkhi, Labibi and Manuchehri. Mohammad Aufi has said he had three Diwans, one in Arabic, one in Farsi and one in Hindavi. Dowlatshah Samarqandi also has said that he had composed Arabic poems. But we do not have any Arabic poems except some lines in his name in Hadayaqus Sehr by Rashid Vatvat-i Samarqandi. منم كاندرعجم واندرعرب كس نبيند چون من از چيـره زباين گرافتد مشكيل درنظم ودرنثـر زمن خواهد زمانه ترجامين بدين هر دوزبان درهر دوميدان بگردونـم رسيــده كامراين Masud Sa’d’s fame is because of his Habsiyat: نامل ز دل چو نای من اندر حصار نای پستی گرفت همت من زین بلندجای آرد هوای نای مرا ناله های زار جز ناله های زار چه آرد هوای نای؟ گردون به درد و رنج مرا کشته بود اگر پیوند عمر من نشدی نظم جانفزای نظمی به کامم اندر چون بادٔه لطیف خطی به دستم اندر چون زلف دل ربای امروز پست گشت مرا همت بلند زنگار غم گرفت مرا طبع غم زدای از رنج تن متام نیارم نهاد پی وز درد دل متام نیارم کشید وای گویم صبور گردم، بر جای نیست دل گویم برسم باشم، هموار نیست رای He was an ode composer. His odes were more than other forms of poetry. His style in odes was like poets who were before him; he did not exaggerate in his odes. His odes are not in Iraqi style; the rhythm is short except three or four odes. Most of his odes have Radif را and ن. The odes, which have Radif, are not many. His odes do not have Tashbib and if they have Tashbib, it is very short. He has done some creativity in poetry as well. For example, he has one ode in praise of Saif uddola Mahmud which does not use letter it means there is not a single word in this ode that upper lips ;م and ب touched lower lips. His language in his odes is very simple without any Ambiguity. He has composed some odes in Tarkib band and Mosad- 150 Essays and Articles das forms as well. In his quatrains, there are three subjects; Habsiyeh, Madhiye, Eshqeyeh. Masud-i-Sad-i-Salman was the earliest star to shine in the galaxy of Indo-Persian poetry. He admired the Indian weather cycles, particularly, the raining season.76 Masud-e-Sad-i-Salman was perhaps the first Indian poet of Persian of the later Ghaznavids who wrote a poem on the type of what is now called 77.باره ماسه This poem has its desired effect because the poem was subsequently initiated by the later poets and even was adopted in Indian language. Masud Sa’d’s life is very similar to Amir Khosrow. He had lived in the time of six kings of Ghaznavid dynasty. As Amir Khosrow was an Indian who knew Persian well, Masud Sad was an Indian by birth who knew Persian well, in addition. Masud has composed some Macaronic poetry (mixed language poetry) as Khosrow had. But Khosrow’s Macaronic poetries are in Persian and Hindavi. Ata ibn Yaqub Kateb Lahori: He has died in 1085A. D. He lived during the time of Ibrahim Ghaznavid (Ruled from 1058 A. D. to 1098 A. D.) He was a contemporary of Masud Sad-i Salman. » العمید االجل ، افضل العرص ، ابوالعالء عطا بن یعقوب الکاتب ، املعروف بناکوس رحمه الله علیه که برین بساط جهان یکی از عطایای سپهر گردان بود ، عمیدی بر والیت فضل والی و گوش و گردن معانی از آللی معالی او خالی… و او را دو دیوانست و هر دو مقبول فضالی عرب و عجم و متمنی اصحاب و ارباب همم و در دیوان تازی او یک قصیده است که در نعت سید املرسلین و خاتم النبیین … پرداخته است. در سنه احدی و تسعین و اربعه مآئه داعی حق را اجابت فرمود و برسای آخرت نقل کرد . عمید عطا به هندوســتان شــهربند فرســتاده بودند . بســبب تقلد شغلی که کرده بود و از آن معزول شده . وقت معزول شدن این قصیده را انشا کرد : به هند اوفتادم چو آدم ز جنت بتاویل و تلبیس و بهتان منکر نه گندم چشیده نه آورده عصیان نه من قول ابلیس را کرده باور بالی من آمد همه دانش من چو روباه را موی و طاؤس را پر 76 Nabi Hadi, Dictionary of Indo-Persian Literature, New Delhi, 1995, p. 20. 77 Schimmel. Annemarie, op. cit., p. 87. 151 Nahid Morshedlou – The Ghaznavid’s Heritage Beyond the Greater Iran دو ماه شغل راندم چو کشتی بخشکی نه سال ماندم بدریا چو لنگر گهی باز دارد چو مشکم بنافه گهی خوش بسوزد چو عودم به مجمر«78 When Sultan Ibrahim reached India, Ata was in prison in Lahore. He stayed six years there and died as he was still in prison. Nizam uddin Abu Nasr-e Farsi built his tomb in Lahore.79 آنکه آدم را برون افگند از خلد نعیم صدهزاران خلق را افگند در قعر جحیم آدم او را خورد و گندم خلق را زان سان بخورد کاو دو نیم و عاملی را کرد او از غم دو نیم آمنه نامش خوار بار و زیر بارش خلق خوار خرد چون دندان مار و کرده شهری چون سلیم آن زمرد بوده و خورشید او را کرده زر زر همه گشته صدف آگنده بر دّر یتیم آن صدف ها پر سنان و هر یکی با نیزه تا نیارد هیچ کس گشنت بگرد آن حریم *** اندر سفرم خیالت ای دلرب من تا روز بدی به هر شبی غمخور من بیداری را گامشتی بر رس من تا باز خیال تو نیاید بر من Abu Roshd Rashid Lahori Mohtaj: He was a close companion of Ibrahim of Ghazni. According to historical books, Mohtaj and his son, Shahab-ud din Mohammad both were famous poets of their time. Abul Faraj Runi has said about him: بو رشد رشید ای کامل ملک ای دست تو ذات کامل ملک تخویف تو رایان هند را افگنده به جبال ملک Masud Sa’d Salman has said about his son: از پی آن که همه خلق به محتاج تو است پرس محتاج ای من شده محتاج به تو Sheikh Hamid-ud din Hakem Lahori: His title was Sultan-ul Tarekin. His great-grandfather was a king in Makran. His Diwan was titled as Golzar-e Hakemi80: رخ خود جانب جانانه کردم رشاب شوق در پیامنه کردم خرامیدی چو مستان اندران راه ز حال غیر نی از خویش آگاه 78 Aufi. Mohammad, op. cit., p. 71. 79 Sarhang Ḵwāja ʿAbd-al-Rašid, op. cit., p. 246. 80 Sarhang Ḵwāja ʿAbd-al-Rašid, op. cit., p.113. 152 Essays and Articles چو مستان اندران ره می خرامید رساپا محو شوق آن صاحب دید چو مجنون در هوای عشق لیلی به ملتان در رسید آن محو موال The line of the Ghaznavids continued for some thirty years more, briefly under Bahram Shah’s son Khosrow Shah, and then, with a greater duration, under the latter’s son Khosrow Malek. Based on Advanced Study in the History of Medieval India, Khosrow Shah of Ghazni was the first ruler in Punjab. He ruled there and his capital was Lahore. Khosrow Shah and his son Khosrow Malek gave incentives to scholars and poets to compose their poems in Persian and this was an important reason for the progress and the rise of Persian literature in Lahore. The court of Ḵhosrow Malek, the last king of Ghaznavids in India, “had an array of fine poets, none of whose dīvāns has unfortunately survived.”81 Abu Jafar Mohamad ibn Ishaq Lahori: His nickname was Alvashi. He was a poet in Khosrow Malek’s Court. » اشعار او شعار بالغت دارد و در لوهور از خواجه ادیب رشف الدین احمد دماوندی شنیدم کــه وقتــی : نجیب امللک ، رشف الخواص ، ابوطاهر املطهر او را امتحان کرد که قصیده ای بگوی که در هر بیت چهار جنس الزم بود چنانکه چهار طبع در یک بیت بسیار آورده اند . اجناس دیگر در هر بیتی چهار جنس ایراد کنی ، این قصیده که عنوان نامه فصاحت و برهان دفرت بالغتست در مدح او بدین ترتیب گفت: ای پاک هم چو آب چو خاکم مدار خوار لطفی بکن چو باد و سوز این تنم چو نار داری قبای رومی و روی تو ششرتیست و اندام نرمرت ز خز و بز هزار بار چشمت بسان نرگس و عارض چو نسرتن رخسار هم چو الله و لب چون گل انار کبکی به گاه رفنت و طوطی گه سخن چرغی به گاه حمله و بازی گه شکار «82 Jamal-ud din ibn Yusef Lahori: He lived during the time of Khosrow Malek. He was mentioned him as Seqat-ud din ibn Yusef Mohammad Lahori. 81 iranicaonline.org/articles/ghaznavids. 82 Aufi. Mohammad, op. cit., p. 231. 153 Nahid Morshedlou – The Ghaznavid’s Heritage Beyond the Greater Iran » االمیر العمید ثقه الدین جامل الفالسفه بن یوسف محمد دربندی بفور فضایل مشهور و بصنوف محامد مذکور و کامل براعت و تقدم او را بر اصحاب صناعت مخصوص و قرص فضل و بزرگی او را بنیان مرصوص .در دولت خرسو ملک آسایش ها دید و مناصب خطیر را متقلد شد . آخراالمر چون دید که گل دولت دنیا بی زحمت خار نیست و مل لذت او بی محنت خامر نی ، دست از اشعال سلطانی باز کشید و پای در دامن قناعت آورد …«83 جانا جفا مکن که جفا را نه در خوریم آن به که در زمانه وفا را بپروریم تا کی برای وصل تو دل در فنا نهیم تا کی ز دست هجر تو خون جگر خوریم در ما چه دیده ای که همی ننگری تو بیش بگذار تا بروی تو یکبار بنگریم جرمی دگر نداریم آخر چه شد که ما بر درگه مراد تو چون حلقه بر دریم در وصل تو ز لطف زبانیت عاجزیم در هجر از رسشک نهانی توانگریم از خود روا مدار که در راه عشق تو بی رهرب وصال درآئیم و بگذریم ظلم فراق از ما کوته کن ار نه ما این مظلمت بحرضت صدر جهان بریم Jamal-ud din Abu Bakr ibn Mosaed Khosravi: He was in Khosrow Malek’s Court. Aufi called him as Iftekharul Shoara84: تا چند پیش غمت دل سپر کنیم در عشق نام خویش بگیتی سمر کنیم از بیم ناوک مژه و تیر غمرهات گاهی کامن ز پشت گه از دل سپر کنیم هر ساعتی ز موج فراقت ببحر غم خانه ز آب دیده بسان شمر کنیم دل ها ز یاد آتش غم خشک شد بتا تا ز آب دیده خاک قدمهات تر کنیم در آرزوی سوسن بستان روی تو از ابر غم دو چشم بسان مطر کنیم گه از هوای لعل تو از دیده ُدر کشیم گه برامید سیم تو از چهره زر کنیم بر جان ما مبند کمر ای کشاده عهد چون ما ز جان بخدمتت ای مه کمر کنیم تا روی خوب تو که کاملست در جامل در پیش ماست کی سخن مخترص کنیم سوگندها خوریم که بودیم در بهشت چون در میان کوی تو جانا گذر کنیم از فر ماه روی تو چون بدر شد هالل تا وصف روی خوب ترا با قمر کنیم در حقه عقیق اگر ُدر نهی سزاست زیرا که ما بجزع ز عشقت گهر کنیم گفتی بطنز دوش که رو یار نو گزین آن روز خود مباد که یاد دگر کنیم تا تاج روزگار شویم ای پرس ز فخر خاک درت چو دیده همی تاج رس کنیم Zia-ud din Abd-ol Rafe Abol Fotoh Heravi: He was a poet and a physician in Khosrow Malek’s court. The exchange of Islamic knowledge, 83 Ibid, p.106. 84 Aufi. Mohammad, op. cit., p. 407. 154 Essays and Articles arts, sciences and medical sciences between the Indian subcontinent and Iran began with Abu Rayhan al-Biruni’s trip to India.85 Zia-ud din was Khosrow Malek’s personal physician. One of his odes has a beautiful usage of “sleeves” which is seldom used by any poet of Indo-Persian literature: » قصیده ای … بامتحان ردیف آســتین گفته اســت و پیش از وی هیچ کس که رس از گریبان فضل برکرده است دامن سخن چنین قصیده نپرداخته …«86 جانا مپوش بر گل رخسار آستین وز خون مرا مخواه چون گلنار آستین گلنارگون شدست ز خون دو چشم من از عشق آن دو نرگس خون خوار آستین خواهی که تا قفاء مه آسامن دری بنامی روی چون مه و بر دار آستین زلف معنرب تو حجاب رخت بس است خیره مپوش بر گل رخسار آستین هرچند کآتش رخ تو هست بی گزند با این همه ز حزم نگه دار آستین ناگه مباد چون دل پرتاب من شود در آتش رخ تو گرفتار آستین دامن کشان تو میروی از کرب و می کنم پر خون من از دو دیده خون بار آستین درج دهان تنگ کشائی چو در سامع در گیرد از لب تو بخروار آستین بوسد بعشق زهره زهرا ترا ستان در رقص بر زنی چو تو هموار آستین پر در شد از تو دامن آخر زمان چنانک پر زر ز جود خواجه احرار آستین واال نظام دین که ز بهر نثار او گلنب کند پر از گل و دینار آستین هر روز وقت صبح فشاند چو مخلصان بر آستانش گنبد دوار آستین شد جیب بحر و دامن کانها تهی ز نقد تا گشت با کفش بسخا یار آستین هر کو ببندگیش مقر نیست مقبالن بر روی او زنند بانکار آستین ای آنکه پیش پای تو هر مرد رسفراز در گردن افگند بستغفار آستین وقتی خوشست و چهره کشایان نو بهار دارند پر ز نعمت فرخار آستین آراست همچو لعبت فرخار در چمن هر شاخ گل که داشت پر از خار آستین از مشکبار الله و کافور گون سمن شد باغ را چو طبله عطار آستین از عکس جام باده تو گوئی که برگ گل بوسیده دست ساقی و خامر آستین پر مشک کرد الله نعامن کش قبا یر زر و سیم نرگس عیار آستین کرد از برای خدمت بزمت عروس وار گلزار پر ز لؤلؤ شهوار آستین چون روی همچو ماه ترا دید بامداد افشاند بر جامل تو گلزار آستین تا چرخ نیلگون سلب باغ را کند دامن ز الجورد و ز زنگار آستین 85 Vaseti, Tarikh-e Ravabet-e Pezeshki-e Iran va Pakistan, pp. 9–12. 86 Aufi. Mohammad, op. cit., p. 330. 155 Nahid Morshedlou – The Ghaznavid’s Heritage Beyond the Greater Iran بادا قباء عمر ترا از بقا تنه وز عصمت خدای جهاندار آستین بر جامه حسود تو از فقر و اضطرار بی پود باد دامن و بی تار آستین *** ای دل بیار مژده که جانان همی رسد وی دیده جای ساز که مهامن همی رسد وی تن اگر چه کار تو از غم بجان رسید جان را فرست پیش که جانان همی رسد کار نشاط و لهو ز رس تازع کن کنون چون رنجهاء هجر بپایان همی رسد ایام درد و محنت و شدت همه گذشت هنگام روح و راحت و درمان همی رسد چون بلبالن نوا زن اندر بهار فضل کان تازه گل بصحن گلستان همی رسد زآن بس که ابر چشم تو بگریست بر رخت امروز بر رخت گل خندان همی رسد آری عجب مدار که از آب ابر چشم در باغ و دشت الله نعامن همی رسد چونانک روح و راحت و شادی بجان خلق از فر ظل رایت سلطان همی رسد شاهی که پیش خدمت او هر که خرسوست از بهر فخر از بن دندان همی رسد از بهر زیب و زینت و تاج و رسیر اوست هر گوهری نفیس که از کان همی رسد وز یمن جود دست و نثار قدوم او در جوف بحر لؤلؤ و مرجان همی رسد از دولت و یعادت ذات رشیف اوست هر تحفه کز طبایع و ارکان همی رسد از کوس همچو رعد و ز تیغ چون برق او بر فرق خصم آفت طوفان همی رسد بر کشتهاء خشک امید جهانیان فیض کفش همیشه چون باران همی رسد87 Nasrullah ibn Abd-ol Hamid Lahori: He was a special courtier in the court of Khosorw Malek88. He was able to speak in Perisan and Arabic. Aufi has said about him that: » بر هر دو زبان قادر بود و در هر دو میدان در سواری ماهر . تازی و پارسی او را ملکه … طالع او منحوس شــد و از جور زمانه مقید و محبوس گشــت و خرسوملک او را حبس فرمود و در حبس این رباعی گفت و بخدمت او فرستاد: ای شاه مکن آنکه بپرسند از تو روزی که تو دانی که نرتسند از تو خرسند نه ای مبلک و دولت ز خدای من چو باشم ببند خرسند از تو در وقت وداع جان این بیت بر زبان راند : از مسند عز اگر چه ناگه رفتیم حمد لله که نیک آگه رفتیم رفتند و شدند و نیز آیند و روند ما نیز توکلت علی الله رفتیم «89 87 Aufi. Mohammd, op. cit., p. 330. 88 Sarhang Ḵwāja ʿAbd-al-Rašid, op. cit., p. 398. 89 Aufi. Mohammd, op. cit., p. 86. 156 Essays and Articles Khajeh Mohammad Rashid Lahori: He was in Khosrow Malek’s court. Aufi has written about him in his book, Lobab- ol Albab: » املولی االجل الکبیر ، شهاب الدوله و الدین محمد بن رشید الرئیس از افاضل آن دیار بود . با جاهی عریض و فضلی مستفیض و طبع زاینده و خاطری در ذکا چون ذکا تابنده و خطی چون در منثور و شعری چون عقد منظوم و از شیخ االسالم ذکی املله و الدین شنیدم که : دوش بنزدیک او قدری گل و نرگس فرستاد . فی البدیهه این دو بیت گفت : شاخکی چند نرگس رعنا گلکی چند تازه چیده آن همه دیده های بی چهره وین همه چهره های بی دیده لطافت این سخن و طراوت این لفظ بر حسن بیان و لطف طبع آن یگانه جهان … صادقست90 ساقیا در ده قدح بر لذت دیدار گل و ز طرب رخسار خود بفروز چون رخسار گل ساقیا چون حق گل را جز مبی نتوان گذارد گل منود از پرده رخ ، می ده ، مخواه آزار گل مدح سلطان گوی تا لذت دهد بر دست تو باده مشکین درین ایام عنرب بار گل بر رسیر ملک تا بگرفت در کف تیغ و جام کند شد دندان فتنه تیز شد بازار گل91 *** ای دیده در خزان ز خجالت بهار چشم دارم ز حرست تو چو ابر بهار چشم بی دیدن جامل تو ای نور چشم من ندهد حیات زیب و نیاید بکار چشم روز کرم گذشت و کرم را ببوستان اندر میان سبزه کشد انتظار چشم92 Conclusion To conclude, in due course of history, Ghaznavids were most notably as the patrons of Persian poets and poetry. The level of literary creativity was as high under Mahmud of Ghazni, Ebrāhīm and his successors up to Bahrāmšāh, with such poets as Abu’l-Faraj Rūnī, Sanāʾī, ʿOṯmān Moḵtārī, Masʿūd-e Saʿd-e Salmān, and Sayyed Ḥasan Ḡaznavī and the court of Ḵosrow Malek, son of Khosrow Shah had an array of fine poets, none of whose dīvāns has unfortunately survived. The Ghaznavid in India tried to patronize Persian language and literature. They had a consuming passion for Persian literature. Their attention to Per- 90 Aufi. Mohammad, op. cit., p. 90. 91 Sarhang Ḵwāja ʿAbd-al-Rašid, op. cit., p. 145–146. 92 Aufi. Mohammad, op. cit., p. 92. 157 Nahid Morshedlou – The Ghaznavid’s Heritage Beyond the Greater Iran sian literature and poems were a cause for attracting lots of poets and writers in their courts. Gradually, this sophisticated manner spread all over India at the Sultanate period. Persian language and literature was the most notable heritage of the Ghaznavid’s dynasty beyond the borders of Greater Iran. 158 Essays and Articles 159 7. Makhmalbaf Film House – A brief Introduction (by Homayun Alam) To begin with, the author pursued the objective, or let us say the inclination, to write to some degree only about Mohsen Makhmalbaf ’s diverse contribution to the Iranian Cultural Sphere. After a short while of reflection the idea was ripe to extend the intended introduction of the filmmaking enterprise of Makhmalbaf, which contains his entire family: Makhmalbaf Film House (MFH). In my own scientific research, I have examined the film of “Gabbeh” (1996).1 Gabbeh is the story of a woman who lives among the nomadic tribe of the Qashqai. The entire plot conveys how a woman lives in the limits of an Iranian tribe. The audience is able to detect a woman’s everyday life, her habits, the strong belonging to the collective and the desire for love to a man. Similarly, the architect of this creative family, Mohsen Makhmalbaf, taught his family and a few friends, necessary consolidated knowledge about cinema and the art of filmmaking for years. He himself states – as one of the outstanding filmmakers of contemporary Iranian cinema – that in his days in Iran he was not possible to study film at university. How should he overcome such an absence of? In order to tackle this problem, Mohsen Makhmalbaf just developed a kind of curriculum to teach and to instruct his own family members – Mar- 1 Cf., Alam, Homayun: Ethnische Minderheiten im iranischen Film von 1980 bis 2010, Nordhausen, 2014, pp. 160–169. ziyeh, Samira, Maysam, and Hana – in making films. His program of study contained bits and pieces beyond learning about filmmaking or just becoming an ordinary filmmaker. Therefore, he explains on his homepage about the contents of his eight hours teaching every day, which lasted about four years or more: “From other arts, an introduction to painting, photography, poetry and music, and from cinema, Film Economics, Production Programming, Screenplay Writing, Acting, Camera Operation (Filming), Editing, Sound Mix, Decoupage, History of Cinema, and Film Analysis.”2 Why is Mohsen Makhmalbaf important for this kind of publication? What might be the link between him and the Iranian Cultural Sphere? Does culture, like art and film, play such an influential role? In this sense of understanding the mastermind and the members of his family chose to live and work, for example not only in Iran, but as well in other parts of the Iranian Cultural Sphere: Afghanistan and Tajikistan. Early, in the late 1980s, as many Afghan refugees fled from war and the devastating situation of life in Afghanistan Makhmalbaf brought with their tool of filmmaking the daily life to the screens of Iran’s audience. On behalf of Afghan refugees in Iran “The Cyclist” (1987) was produced. It tells the viewer the plight of refugees in Iran who are in need and do jobs, which are below the dignity of human beings. During the Taliban’s regency in Afghanistan, the Makhmalbaf family filmed the movie “Kandahar” (2001). Initially, the content of the film was not very interesting for film festivals. However, it was only after the 9/11 attacks on the twin towers in New York that Makhmalbaf ’s piece got much attention. Another example with the subject of Afghanistan is the renowned film of Hana Makhmalbaf “Buddha Col- 2 http://www.makhmalbaf.com/?q=mfh. 160 Essays and Articles lapsed out of Shame” (2007). In this piece, the story of a female child is portrayed. Her story shows that no social comforts are allowed for the opposite sex in Afghanistan, namely the women. In Tajikistan, another country of the Iranian Culture Sphere, the Makhmalbaf charted the story of “The Silence” (1998). It is about a young boy who seems to be the only breadwinner for his family. However, he is too much interested in music and sometimes loses his daily task, which is to go to work. An addition, the film of “Sex & Philosophy” (2005) which is directed by Mohsen Makhmalbaf is set in Tajikistan. In this film, Makhmalbaf draws the line between the modern sense of love, which has according to his film more to do with sex, and the desire for romance, which is maybe a delusion. The purpose of these written phrases is an introduction about the significant exercise of influence of visual art, film, poetry, cultural space and transnationality. Their unprecedented interest to make films in countries which share a common history, culture, language and political frontier with Iran – even Tajikistan is not a neighboring country of Iran – is so far obvious. It is really a kind of archetype to leave Iran for unsecure Afghanistan because of making films with the commitment of unprofessional local actors by means of the strong language of visual art. To sum up, it is much room to refer to many masterpieces of the MFH which have generally a transnational perception in the sense of the Iranian Culture Sphere. Unfortunately, as I have written an E-mail to the official homepage of the MFH nobody has responded to my request. Nevertheless, to my view, it should belong to the acquirements of a researcher to explore more on a topic when the protagonist is not at the scenario. 161 Makhmalbaf Film House – A brief Introduction (by Homayun Alam) 163 8. Gabriele Dold-Ghadar – From Balkh to Ṭanğa. Settings in the Medieval Trading World نحن جلبنا الخيل من بلخ (...) حتى سقيناها وما نبده نهرى حلب (...) حتى إذا ما دوخت بالشام ارض الصلب سرنا إلى مصر بها في جحفل ذى جلب (...) وجادت الخيل بنا طنجة ذات العجب (...) Baššār b. Burd al-ʿUqailī al-Muraʿat al-Muʿāḏ (714–784)1 Andalusia, with its abundant residua of Muslim domination, features an outstanding tradition of a historic and cultural heritage traditionally labelled “Moorish-Arabic”. We know, that “Moorish” Al-Andalus outreached by far present-day Andalusia and stretched from the center of Portugal beyond Toledo in Castilia and Zaragoza to the Mediterranean coastline with the cities of Valencia, Alicante, and Almeria, where Christians and Jews used to live in huge numbers. Research and science has contributed a great deal to enlighten its past by replacing myths and preconceptions by safeguarded findings. Some popular beliefs regarding conquest, garrison and daily life under Muslim domination have been thus discovered to be unfounded. Most schol- 1 Baššār b. Burd (son of an Iranian slave from Khorāsān or Ṭoḫāristān), Dīwān, vol. 1, Kairo, 1950, pp. 377–380. “We brought the horses from Balkh […], to water them at the river of Aleppo,whence they were exhausted in Syria, the land of the cross, we trailed with them to Egypt in a large host of uproar […] and the horses were better off in the Tangier of miracles.” arly studies focus exclusively on Muslim-Arabic aspects – and recently as well on those of Berber and Jewish origins. The Iranian share has still largely remained hidden and still little attention has been drawn to Iranian relicts on the Iberian Peninsula. Astounding research results in the fields of culture, art history, linguistics, soldiery, economy and trade indicate, however, Iranian origins: much of what had been so far characterized as “Arabic” turns out to be Persian. When tracing roots, differentiation and specification is a crucial issue in order to counter oversimplification and generalisation. A survey of politico-historical backgrounds of the Medieval Islamic world (8th to 12th centuries C.E.), the examination of its antecedents, philological monuments, transmitters, pivots, paths, and modes of direct and/or indirect cultural transfers, settings of the cultural “donor” in the East, the “recipient” in the West and regions in-between have revealed parallel processes and reciprocity of acculturated assets – despite historical blurring, linguistic inaccuracies, and intermediate areas, that practically do not allow a separate examination. The culled Iranian elements not only verify the stake of Persian heritage held in Al-Andalus, but also the occasions, routes, and periods of transmission from Khorāsān on the eastern boarder of Iran (today comprising regions of eastern Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Usbekistan) to the westernmost edge of the Islamic empire – including adjacent regions alongside the North African Mediterranean coastline or the “Land of the Slavs and Turks”.2 Influences of the Iranian Culture Sphere had, in fact, reached Al- Andalus via Babylonia, the Levant and Egypt at all times: throughout the days of the Achaemenids and Phoenicians, in the course of Sāsānian colonialism and eventually in the process of the Islamic conquests, whence the flow of armed forces from Balkh to Ṭanǧa brought soldiery from the “fermentation tanks” Kūfa and Baṣra in Iraq and their affiliated outposts in Khorāsān (the focal points Balkh and Marw), 2 Ibn Khordādhbeh, Kitāb al-Masālik wa‘l-mamālik, de Goeje, Leiden, 1992, repr. 1889. 164 Essays and Articles via the North African “hubs” Fusṭāṭ, Kairouan, Ceuta, and Tangier to Gibraltar (Jabal Ṭāriq). Scholarly works generally suggest that the events between 710 and 797 map an “Arab” invasion or conquest with subsequent “Arabic” cultural influences in Andalusia. However, the military conquests brought soldiery of miscellaneous cultures, religions, and countries to North Africa, where they formed an “Egyptian army”, the so-called ǧayš al-ʿabbāsī. Yet from as far away as Yemen, Persian contingents of Asāwira, Abnāʾ and Ḥamrāʾ Daylam, formerly beeing part of the primary troops in Iraq and Khorāsān, arrived at the Mediterranean – headed by their governors and military leaders (Muhallab, Ḥabḥāb, al-Aġlab), who had their origins in Iran. They constituted the so-called al-ʿaǧām, the non-Arab troop units within the Islamic armed forces.3 Evidence and appearance lead to the conclusion, that we are dealing with various modes and paths of transmission and different types of agents: traders, scholars, craftsmen, artists, and soldiers. Patronyms4, toponyms5 and origins of members of the Andalusian ǧund6 indicate the presence of individuals and groups of settlers of Persian stock. The Iranian feasts of Noruz, Mehragan and Sadeh7, which were celebrated as well in Al-Andalus, provide ample proof of Iranian heritage on the Peninsula. North Africa as the bridge linking the Islamic East and the Islamic West became a hotbed for ideas and values that made their way foremost by sea to Spain, where they took their final shape.8 Gnostic groups9 of all kinds and denominations (Ṣufriyya, Ibāḍiyya, Šāḏiliyya or Karaites) migrated from East to West. Shii elements, that 3 Dold-Ghadar, 2016, pp. 228–258, Zakeri, 1995, p. 307, Kennedy, 2001, p. 12/Fn 74, Al-Balāḏurī, 1992, vol. 42, p. 117, McGraw Donner, 1981, pp. 257, 259, 277. 4 Al-Maqqarī, 1968, vol. 3, pp. 65/66. 5 Al-Maqqarī, 1840, vol. 1, p. 48, Fn 102, p. 53, Fn 130, Al-Yaʿqūbī, 1937, pp. 76, 77, Ibn-Baškuwāl, 1966, vol. 1, pp. 84ff., Seco de Lucena Paredes, Toponimos arabes identificados, Granada, 1974. 6 Vallvé Bermejo, 1978, p. 93, Ibn al-Qūṭiyya, 1989, pp. 38–40. 7 Dold-Ghadar, 2016, pp. 182–208, Al-Ḥuṣrī al-Qairawānī, 1969, pp. 1005–1006. 8 Hirschberg, 1974, p. 8. 9 Dold-Ghadar, 2016, pp. 259–265, 272–281. 165 Gabriele Dold-Ghadar – From Balkh to Ṭanğa spread likewise via Khorāsān to the ʿĀmilī/Metāwile in the Ǧabal ʿĀmil (todays Lebanon) and wandered from Ṣanʿāʾ to Siǧilmāsa finally gained a foothalt in Al-Andalus.10 The “by-catch” of such studies unveils much more: sources of Medieval historians, traditionalists, who perpetuate the traditional “…refiere Fulano de Zutano de Mengano” (span. for: “refers to so and so…”) and publications of modern historians with a so-called “blind spot” admitted generalizations as well as “editorial inroads”. Manuscripts of improperly working (“corrective”) copyists and their translations, falsified pedigrees, legends, topoi as well as a constant intermixture of “Arabic”, “Arabs” and “Muslim” and, last but not least, the ignorance of the phenomenon of “Arabicized Persians” or “Iranized Arabs” cemented in the course of time historical fuzziness and linguistic imprecicions and are suspect of having fostered polemic and polarization.11 In contrast to legendary material found in the “Rodrigo”-Saga or the mythological Shāhnāmeh and Garshāsp-Nāmeh we can make use in particular of the philological monuments in that migrated with their speakers from East to West. Arabic as the lingua franca and the regrettable ignorance of genuine roots of names, terms and habits led to wrong ascriptions and to the false conclusion that they were of Arabic provenance.12 Detailed inspection of the flow of trade and economic relations between Iran, the eastern Mediterranean, and Al-Andalus of the time shows a considerable Iranian share in almost all significant structures and occupations. Within the Mediterranean and Andalusian-Moroccan “domestic” markets with a monetary union and a tight network of banks, Persian technical terms were used commonly not only for merchandise, but as well in commercial correspondence, for financial transactions, and services known as Suftāǧa, Ǧahbadh and 10 Halm, 1988, p. 194, Ibn al-Abbār, 1964, vol. 2, p. 130, Asín Palacios, 1945, pp. 1 ff., 255 ff. 11 Castro, 1973, p. 179, Smith/Melville, 1992, vol. 3, p. xiv, Dozy, 1848–1851, p. 106, Dold-Ghadar, 2016, pp. 30–56, Lévi-Provençal, 1953, pp. 56 (Supplement), 57. 12 Dold-Ghadar, 2016, pp. 209–258, 265–272, Ibrahim, 1991. 166 Essays and Articles Fīǧ.13 Seals perpetuate iconographic traditions of the Sāsānids and Egyptian tax receipts reveal formulaic parallels to the Khorāsān corpus.14 Early “re-imports”, “imitations” and the phenomenon of the enigmatic Medieval “global players” of the so-called Rahdhānites demonstrate, that economic globalization is not just an issue of the 21st century. Surprising results regarding design of the troops of the invading “Arabic” Muslims, the knowledge transfer and migrating scholarship between the intellectual centers Gondi-Šapūr, Pumbeditha and Sura in the East and Córdoba and Lucena in the West,15 and the brisk economic relations between Persian and Arabic economic core- and fringeregions to the Mediterranean Sea as far as the Indian subcontinent, disclose the ample breadth of Iranian heritage in Andalusia and allow speculations that the pivotal “cultural-brokers” were scholars, clergymen and, in particular, merchants, who brought Persian ideas and Iranian culture from Iranian trading metropolises to the Mediterranean and finally to Spain. The Cairo-Genizot verify close family ties between the traders from eastern Iran, Iraq and the Egyptian “hubs” Cairo and Alexandria alongside the North-African coastline to Al-Andalus, who commonly enough were simultaneously commuting scholars between Iran, Mesopotamia, Egypt and Spain.16 Among the various and multifaceted fields of acculturation, trade alludes to the main aspects of cultural exchange between East and West. The following pages therefore are dedicated to the vast chapter of Medieval commerce. “Likewise, it is more advantageous and more profitable for the merchant’s enterprise, and a better guarantee (that he will be able to take advantage of) market fluctuations, if he brings goods from a country that is far away and where there is danger on the road. In such 13 Dold-Ghadar, 2016, pp. 156–167, Cohen, 1994, p. 90, Fischel, 1969, p. 4, 17–19, and The Origin of Banking in medieval Islam, JRAS, 1933, pp. 339 ff., 569 ff., Gaube, 1973, pp. 9, 12, 16, Lombard, 1992, pp. 113 ff, 213, V. Kremer, 1888, p. 8. 14 Zoméno, 2007, p. 7. 15 Dold-Ghadar, 2016, pp. 131–156, 281–287, Asín Palacios, 1978, p. 27. 16 Goitein, 1999, pp. 48, 293, Ashtor, 1983, p. 11. 167 Gabriele Dold-Ghadar – From Balkh to Ṭanğa a case, the goods transported will be few and rare, because the place where they come from is far away or because the road over which they come is beset with perils, so that there are few who would bring them, and they are very rare. When goods are few and rare, their prices go up. On the other hand, when the country is near and the road safe for traveling, there will be many to transport the goods. Thus, they will be found in large quantities, and the prices will go down. Therefore, the merchants who dare to enter the Sudan country are the most prosperous and wealthy of all people. The distance and the difficulty of the road they travel are great. They have to cross a difficult desert which is made (almost) inaccessible by fear (of danger) and beset by (the danger of) thirst. Water is found there only in a few well known spots to which caravan guides lead the way. The distance of this road is braved only by a very few people. Therefore, the goods of the Sudan country are found only in small quantities among us, and they are particularly expensive. The same applies to our goods among them. Thus, merchandise becomes more valuable when merchants transport it from one country to another. (Merchants who do so) quickly get rich and wealthy. The same applies to merchants who travel from our country to the East, also because of the great distance to be traversed. On the other hand, those who travel back and forth between the cities and countries of one particular region earn little and make a very small profit, because their goods are available in large quantities and there is a great number of merchants who travel with them.”17 Ibn Khaldūn (1332–1382) 17 Ibn Khaldūn, The Muqaddimah, trsl. by Franz Rosenthal (Chapter 5/10) http:// www.muslimphilosophy.com/ik/Muqaddimah/Chapter5/Ch_5_10.htm. 168 Essays and Articles Merchandising has always been an indicator of the cultural standard of a country. Medieval “global players” had access to knowledge and a share in the material prosperity of a worldwide community of traders with close ties even over huge distances and could thus make use of the enormous ressources of culture for the benefit of successful business. Analogue to previous settings in antiquity, the immense expansion of the Islamic Empire created a huge market with almost unlimited requirements not only of daily life: notably the courts in their competitive situation by the three “rival caliphates”, created demands for different kinds of merchandise in those times. “Luxury will at first give additional strength to a dynasty. The reason for this is that a tribe that has obtained royal authority and luxury is prolific and produces many children, and the community grows. Thus, the group grows. Furthermore, a greater number of clients and followers is acquired. The (new) generations grow up in a climate of prosperity and luxury. Through them, (the dynasty) gains in numbers and in strength, because a great number of groups form at that time as the result of the numerical increase.”18 18 Ibn Khaldūn, The Muqaddimah, trsl. by Franz Rosenthal, Chapter 3/14 http:// www.muslimphilosophy.com/ik/Muqaddimah/Chapter3/Ch_3_14.htm. Additionally Ibn Khaldūn warns of hubris (Chapter 2/17): http://www.muslimphilosophy.com/ik/Muqaddimah/Chapter2/Ch_2_17.htm. “Obstacles on the way toward royal authority are luxury and the submergence of the tribe in a life of prosperity. As a result, the toughness of desert life is lost. Group feeling and courage weaken. Members of the tribe revel in the well-being that God has given them. Their children and offspring grow up too proud to look after themselves or to attend to their own needs. […] The greater their luxury and the easier the life they enjoy, the closer they are to extinction, not to mention (their lost chance of obtaining) royal authority. The things that go with luxury and submergence in a life of ease break the vigor of the group feeling, which alone produces superiority. When group feeling is destroyed, the tribe is no longer able to defend or protect itself, let alone press any claims. It will be swallowed up by other nations.” 169 Gabriele Dold-Ghadar – From Balkh to Ṭanğa In the wake of the Islamic conquests, that, for the first time after Alexander the Great, unified the eastern and western parts of the Orient,19 markets were generated almost everywhere between Persia and Al- Andalus: “Andalusi goods were exported, of course, but it was the country’s role as a consumer society that forged the primary trading linkages, particularly with the distant markets of Persia and India.”20 In order to increase political reputation and commercial profit, the already well-established banking and credit system needed further improvement. ʿAbd ar-Raḥmān II. thus reshaped the structures of the state in the 9th century by inventing official institutions according to ʿAbbāsid archetypes. Among others, he established government monopoly, a hierarchy of state-officials pursuant to Persian patterns, gave the new state a stable financial basis and delegated the supervision of municipal affairs to hāǧib and wazīr, both of them supervised by a qadā. Affairs of trade were subject to superintendence by the city’s prefect, the muḥtasib, a zalmedina (malapropism of Ar.: ṣāḥib al-madīna) and a zabazoque (Ar.: sāḥib aṣ-ṣūq) as custodian of the market, whose‘s post is described by Ibn Khaldūn as follows: “He investigates abuses and applies the appropriate punishments and corrective measures. He sees to it that the people act in accord with the public interest in the town (under his supervision). For instance, he prohibits the obstruction of roads. He forbids porters and boatmen to carry too heavy loads. He orders the owners of buildings threatening to collapse, to tear them down and thus remove the possibility of danger to passersby. He prevents teachers in schools and other places from beating the young pupils too much. 19 Lewis, 1987, p. 74. 20 Glick, 1979, p. 130. 170 Essays and Articles He has no authority over legal claims in general but he has authority over everything relating to fraud and deception in connection with food and other things and in connection with weights and measures. Among his duties is that of making dilatory debtors pay what they owe, and similar things that do not require hearing of evidence or a legal verdict, in other words, cases with which a judge would have nothing to do because they are so common and simple.”21 To secure smooth money-transfers between the reloading points and save entrepôts for their merchandise, traders are dependend on reliable staging posts. In this respect, branch-offices of the religious communities and/or relatives that belonged to the international widely ramified family-clans proved of high value. Thus, the net of intellectual and religious relationships perfectly matches the routes of Jewish long-distance trading that gained in importance after the Islamic conquest, when “Greek and Syriac” Christian traders, who used to share with their Jewish guildsmen, had dropped out of the European scenery. Jewish entrepreneurship is well documented in the Cairo Geniza22 and maintained as the “sole open window to the world”, a tender inter-linkage between Catholic Europe and the “higher-developed” countries of the Islamic world, Byzantium, India and China”.23 The “joint-ventures” of Christian and Jewish merchants on Islamic soil, however, had no equivalent in the Catholic West. Within the inter-religious joint-enterprises, Jewish- Muslim commendas provided for statuatory regulations regarding distribution of profit realized on the Sabbath and other holidays or when generated from unauthorised, “illicit” merchandise.24 21 Ibn Khaldūn, The Muqaddimah, trsl. by Franz Rosenthal, Chapter 3/29 http:// www.muslimphilosophy.com/ik/Muqaddimah/Chapter3/Ch_3_29.htm. 22 A collection of some 400,000 Jewish manuscript fragments and Fatimid administrative documents preserved in a storage attic in the Ben-Ezra-Synagogue in Old Cairo from the 8th century on. 23 Lombard, 1992, p. 210, Lopez, 1971, pp. 60–61. 24 Cohen, 1994, pp. 79 ff., 95, 96. 171 Gabriele Dold-Ghadar – From Balkh to Ṭanğa To what extent pre-Islamic Soghdian or the later Ibāḍi commercial enterprises had a share in the medieval „common market“ and the nature of their contribution to the cultural transfers, is subject to a separate future study.25 Historia und Historiae – Settings in the Medieval Trading World Historical details show an Iranized economic area spreading from East to West already during the days of the Achaemenids: “When Kyros entered Babylonia on the 29. Oktober 539, he adopted the traditional titles. […] The huge satrapy that he administered, comprised the ancient Chaldean empire […] and whole of Mesopotamia, Syria, Phoenicia and Palestine, which meant the merging of the Persian Empire and the empire of Nebukadnezar.”26 By command of his father, Kambyses is said to have “grasped the hand of the god Marduk” at the New Year’s festival (Akitu), on March, 27th of the year 538, that made him “King of Babylonia and the countries”. In those times, 50.000 souls are said to have returned from Babylonia to Palestine under the Persian proconsul Zerubbabel and the High Priest Joshua – conveying Iranian cultural elements – not least in the Talmudic eschatology27 – to the West. Herodotus’ “fifth” Achaemenid satrapy Eber-Nāri comprised Phoenicia, Judah, Samaria, the Arab tribes and the Phoenician cities of Tyre, Sidon, Byblos and Aradus and had formed a prosperous entity of high value for the Great King due to the Phoenician naval forces, that were 25 Frye, 1996, pp. 185–198 and 1993, p. 247. 26 Meuleau,1999, p. 331. 27 Kohut, 1869, pp. 552–591. 172 Essays and Articles in confederation with Egyptian, Ionian, and Karian flotillas who gave Persia military support.28 Particularly Phoenician cities benefited from the so-called “Pax Persica”, that developed during the 4th century BC in the course of the equalization of the different political structures in the huge empire of Dareios.29 As Persian vassal states, they were trading with the archeologically not exactly identified Spanish Tartessos (Tarsis/Tarshish/Tarsos).30 The Old Testament mentions Solomon’s “Tarshish-flotilla” as follows: “All King Solomon’s goblets were gold, and all the household articles in the Palace of the Forest of Lebanon were pure gold. Nothing was made of silver, because silver was considered of little value in Solomon’s days. The king had a fleet of trading ships at sea along with the ships of Hiram. Once every three years it returned, carrying gold, silver and ivory, and apes and baboons.”31 “Now you, son of man, raise a lamentation over Tyre, and say to Tyre, who dwells at the entrances to the sea, merchant of the peoples to many coastlands […], Your borders are in the heart of the seas;your builders made perfect your beauty. They made all your planks of fir trees from Senir; they took a cedar from Lebanon to make a mast for you. Of oaks of Bashan they made your oars;they made your deck of pines from the coasts of Cyprus, inlaid with ivory. Of fine embroidered linen from Egypt was your sail, serving as your banner; blue and purple from the coasts of Elishah was your awning. The inhabitants of Sidon and Arvad were your rowers; your skilled men, O Tyre, 28 Bengtson, 1999, pp. 53, 372/373. 29 Hitti, 1967, pp. 150–155, Kent, 1933, vol. 53, pp. 1–23, 166, Darius’ founding inscription in Susa mentions the naurina (Old-Persian “nau-caina”, cedar) from Lebanon (cf. JAOS, Vol. 53, No.2, line 30/31). 30 Braun, 2001, p. 558. Herodotus and Strabo give „Tartessus“, Le Page Renouf (Proc. Soc. Bibl. Arch., xvi.,104 ff.) traces the word back to the Aramaic term “tarshish”, applied to the Phoenician coastline. 31 Kings, 10:21–22. 173 Gabriele Dold-Ghadar – From Balkh to Ṭanğa were in you; they were your pilots. […] The elders of Gebal and her skilled men were in you, caulking your seams; all the ships of the sea with their mariners were in you to barter for your wares. Persia and Lud and Put were in your army as your men of war. They hung the shield and helmet in you; they gave you splendor. […] Tarshish did business with you because of your great wealth of every kind; silver, iron, tin, and lead they exchanged for your wares. Javan, Tubal, and Meshech traded with you; they exchanged human beings and vessels of bronze for your merchandise. […] The ships of Tarshish traveled for you with your merchandise.”32 Same may be true for Egypt during the 5th century B.C., when, according to E. Brescianni, the surroundings of the foreign garrisons in Lower Egypt – especially Memphis – were swarming with Persians and Babylonians, kinsmen of Semitic tribes, Cilicians and Greeks, who were involved in trade and craft. Throughout the pre-Christian 3rd and 2nd centuries, Persia and the Littoral were linked by the lucrative Seleucid intermediary trade, when silk from the Far East, gemstones from Central Asia, pepper and cinnamon from India, myrrh and olibanum (frankincense) from Arabia became needs in Mediterranean daily life and when the immense demand for court-slaves was met by constant supply through wars and piracy.33 By 700 C.E., there was still a unified and prosperous Mediterranean market centering on al-Fusṭāṭ and the significant entrepôt Alexandria. However, restrictions imposed by King Egica (687–702) and the ban on Jews to partake in international trade, aggravated the serious economic disadvantages, particularly in Spain.34 Byzantine suppression of a “gold standard” in the Mediterranean might have finally triggered an economic war in 693, provoked by ʿAbd al-Malik b. Marwān’s administrative and monetary reform, that brought a replacement of the Byzantine denarius, that bore the 32 Ezekiel, 27, 2–25. 33 Bresciani, 1999, p. 321, Hitti, 1967, p. 174. 34 Lewis, 1951, p. 87. 174 Essays and Articles portrait of the emperor, by the Muslim gold-dinar with qurʿānic texts. Casus Belli thus were the first gold-dinars that arrived as tribute at the court of Justinian II. Eagerness for independency from Byzantium was a novelty in those days and eventually led to the establishment of an economically autonomous unity within the entire domain of ʿ Abd al- Malik.35 This war paved the way for Syrian armed forces to arrive in northern Africa to abate Berber revolts in 732 and to calm down the conflict between the already settled Baladīyūn (Yemenite and Kalbite) and the „newcomers“ of the Qaysites in Córdoba. An upheaval yet loomed in the East as well: The anti-Umayyad agitation in favor of the ʿ Abbāsids, which was started in 744 by Abū Muslim in Khorāsān, had, by 749, brought all of Iran under ʿ Abbāsid sway and culminated in the ʿAbbāsid Revolution in 750 that ended up in the erasure of the Umayyads. Their last survivor, ʿAbd ar-Raḥmān b. Muʿāwiya b. Hišām b. ʿAbd al-Malik b. Marwān (born in 731), found refuge in 755 with the Nafza-Berbers in Nakūr, with whom he was related on his mother’s side. From there, he hoisted the sails towards the Andalusian Almuñécar (al-Munakkab), where the renouncement of the Umayyad proconsul of Al-Andalus, Yūsuf al-Fihrī, led to the battle at the Guadalquivir (al-Wādī al-Kabīr) near Córdoba. Subsequently, ʿAbd ar-Raḥmān declared himself Amīr of Al-Andalus and independent from the caliphate of Baghdad. The economic situation towards the mid of the 8th century, however, was not too promising: “An Egypt in disorder, Syria in the doldrums, North Africa and Spain in chaos, France stagnate, Eastern Syrians and Egyptians no longer in Western markets, and France and Spain on a silver coinage – a world in which only Byzantium, Italy, and Kazaria have escaped economic ruin.”36 35 Hitti, 1940, pp. 117/193. 36 Lewis, 1951, p. 88, 89. 175 Gabriele Dold-Ghadar – From Balkh to Ṭanğa Liquidity was in great demand during the 9th and 10th centuries: for the ʿAbbāsid Baghdad and the Fāṭimid Cairo as well as for the Umayyad Córdoba. Solvency, in order to meet military needs could only be achieved by an elaborated finance- and credit-economy and hence required fundamental modifications of the economic structures within the Islamic Empire. In order to boost international trade and facilitate progressive urbanization and the advancement of a guild of merchants, Muslim regents tended to ignore religious provisions and recruited Non-Muslims for civil service, provided it seemed politically opportune to them.37 Trade-routes and itineraries – Highways and Silkroads Trade-routes are life- and pipelines of transcontinental trade. Sound infrastructure guarantees prosperity for traders, inhabitants, and abutters, and even the slightest diversion or interruption of those itineraries has a severe impetus on the fragile structure on the whole. Logistics are a crucial factor of entrepreneurship. It indicates intensity and nature of contacts and the extent of migration and thus reveals economic-political backgrounds and contexts. Merchandise (including military equipment) of different kinds and provenience, found its way to multiple destinations: at various times and terms and by the use of manifold technical devices. This suggests, that there was not just one “Silk Road”. One of the most famous ancient routes probably was the so-called “Road of the King” (Kings Road), that led from Sardeis/Ephesos via Asia Minor and Mesopotamia to Susa. When Dareios was in power, an extension had been established to the Gulf, where exiled Greeks and Karians performed naval services for the Persians.38 Being the 5th Persian tax assessment area, the Phoenician trade cities built the terminuses of the caravan routes from Central Asia. From here, metals, spi- 37 Fischel, 1969, p. XI. 38 Wiesehöfer, 1998, pp. 116–118. 176 Essays and Articles ces, Levantine glass, or crimson were expedited further by ship. Major effects on trade routes however have technical improvements and inventions, as well as political unrests and natural catastrophes. They trigger fluctuations in the market, and diminish the economic power of affected areas. This may be exemplified by the city of Ur, which, according to the vast number of recovered clay tablets, had its boom days under Kambyses during the 6th century B.C., when deviation of the course of the Euphrates and poor maintenance of the sewage system, that made it finally run dry, led to the loss of port and waterways and drove the “life” out of the city. Alexander the Great is thus said to have conquered nothing but a wretched spot.39 Traditional trade routes were the “highways” amongst caravan trails. They linked Turkestan and northern Persia, the Caspian and Black Seas, the Crimea, Cherson or Sevastopol and led from Armenia and Syria via Dārā, Artaxatá, Callinicum to Nisibis. As long as the southern route via the Red Sea towards the Indian Ocean was not yet navigable, goods had to be brought from Alexandria to the ports on the Red Sea by various means of transportation – a fact, that made Fusṭāṭ a crucial pivot especially in Islamic times. The Ptolemies, like their successors, used the Suez and the Red Sea to Alexandria and goods were shipped from Ceylon via the Arabian Sea and the Persian Gulf to Mesopotamia on to Syria.40 During the days of the Seleucids (3rd/2nd centuries B.C.), trade routes that started from Phoenician cities followed either the coastal route northwards through Laodicea (al-Lāḏiqiya) or turned eastwards to Emesa (Ḥomṣ), or drifted to the direction of Coele Syria at Ṣūr, into the Bekaa Valley. In northern Syria, the international highway branched off to the west to Asia Minor and an eastern branch led through Mesopotamia to Persia, where it merged with the Silk Road to India, China and the Far East.41 39 Meuleau, 1999, p. 339. 40 Ashtor, 1983, p. 11. 41 Philip K. Hitti, 1967, p. 175. 177 Gabriele Dold-Ghadar – From Balkh to Ṭanğa In addition to the route from Syria via Mesopotamia and Iran to China, the combined land-sea trade to India, that followed from Syria to southern Mesopotamia and seaward to the east, played an important role during the Parthian period (3rd century BC– 3rd century CE). This created transit agents in Palmyra, who transported goods between Syria and the Mesene.42 With the alterations in this network of roads, new trade routes came into being in the course of the 8th century in the Middle East and in Sub-Saharan Africa with a so-called “African Silk-Road”.43 The transfer of the Fāṭimid court to Egypt in 973 eventually implied the shifting of army, administration, and the move of the commercial center Kairouan and its port al-Mahdiyya to Cairo and Alexandria. Hence, technically-advanced ships, that made a non-stop passage feasible between Almería or Sevilla and Alexandria, cut off Ifrīqiya as an emporium. The appeal for a crusade by Urban II. in 1095 caused anew an economic resetting and stuffed the wallets of the Italian maritime republics, who henceforth traded directly with the Levant and ousted traditional Oriental competitors from the market.44 Bernard Lewis points out the effort and high degree of mobility regarding staff and material of Jewish traders and their families to maintain a cultural, social, and to a certain extent, economic entity of their society. This “esprit de corps” had been maintained by the far-flung family ties within their international commercial network. 45 The manifold, yet somewhat confusing itineraries of the Jewish socalled “Rahdhānites” of the 8th–10th centuries are reported to have led from Marseille and Spanish harbours to Egypt and continued, according to Ibn Khordādhbeh (supposedly born between 820 and 825 in Khorāsān and educated in Baghdad), overland from Khorāsān to China 42 Josef Wiesehöfer, 1998, p. 200. 43 M. Talbi, The Rustamids, EI-online. 44 Glick, 1979. p. 131, Goitein,1973, p. 234, Goitein, 1999, pp. 32, 419. 45 Lewis, 1987, pp. 74–75, Lombard, 1992, p. 213. 178 Essays and Articles with the bridgehead Kairouan linking Babylonia, Palestine, and Egypt to Spain, Sicily, and Italy.46 Different routes took them either from Spain to Sūs al-Aqṣā and Tangier to Ifrīqiya and Fusṭāṭ, via Ramlah in Palestine and Damascus to Baghdad, Baṣra, Ahwāz, Fārs and Kirmān to their final destinations in India and China. One alternate path led either via the “land of the Slavs” to Khamli (Khamlīǧ?), capital of the Khazars, from where they either sailed across the Caspian Sea and journeyed on to Khorāsān and the „land of the Turks“ or to the Bactrian Balkh and Transoxania. Alternatively they used the route from the „lands of the Franks“ via the Mediterranean to al-Faramā close to the old Pelusium in Egypt, via Qulzūm/Clysma, the present-day Suez, where they continued by ship via al-Ǧār (Medina) and Jeddah to Sindh. In addidtion they are said to have proceeded on the Euphrates to Baghdad and on the Tigris to al-Ubulla/Baṣra, from where they set sails for Persia, India, and China. For the way back it seems that they preferred to journey from Egypt on sailboats to Constantinople or Anṭākiya on the Orontes, from where they reached al-Ǧābiya, headquarter of the Damascene ǧund of the Ǧawlān, within a three days‘ march. Travelling and merchandising appears to have been a trivial issue then. In order to keep up the prestige of the Babylonian academies, Samuel b. Hofni, ultimately Gaon of Sura (–1034), undertook vast journeys via Kairouan’s port al-Mahdīyya to Spain. Those trips could easily have taken them months and bore the risk of raids.47 The same goes for Andalusian traders, who frequented Kairouan until the 10th century, where they accepted consignments from Egypt or Syria and either marketed them locally or, provided that seemed more profitable, shipped them on to Spain.48 Following the Hilālī-raids in the mid of the 11th century, Andalusian merchants who lived in Kairouan, moved closer to Egypt – thence, a key market of Andalusian products. 46 Lewis, 1951, pp. 125–126, Goitein, 1955, p. 107. 47 Hirschberg, 1974, pp. 254, 276, Raphael, 1985, p. 87. 48 Glick, 1979, p. 131. 179 Gabriele Dold-Ghadar – From Balkh to Ṭanğa Profound insight into the inner relationships and economic significance of the Mediterranean are provided by the manuscripts of the Cairo Geniza. They had been found in 1752 and were sorted by Solomon Schechter in the late 19th century and, after their decipherment, made accessible to scholarship by Shlomo Dov Goitein some sixty years later. Commercial metropolises and reloading points “By the beginning of the thenth century, a Jewish consortium in Baghdad had accumulated great wealth. Headed by two merchant-bankers – Joseph b. Phineas and Aaron b. Amram – whose origins seem to have been in the province of Ahwaz in southern Iraq, the consortium became attached to the Abbasid caliphate at Baghdad as a provider of loans and other banking and mercantile services. […] These individuals represented a significant class of Jews from the eastern Islamic lands; along with their Muslim counterparts, they fueled the commercial revolution of the early Islamic centuries.”49 Besides the traditional Iranian commercial metropolises Iṣfahān, the Median Raghā (Ar.: ar-Rayy) and Hamadān in the Ǧibāl, major medieval trading cities were Nīšāpūr, Marw, Herāt and Balkh in Khorāsān, Samarqand and Bukhārā in Soghdia, Shūshtar (Ar.:Tustar) and Ahwāz in the modern province of Ḫūzistān. Ahwāz, the ancient Tareiana, is situated at the Kārūn river, where, during the days of the Achaemenids, the Kings Road from Susa to Persepolis and Pasagardae led over a bridge of boats.50 Ahwāz, the Talmudic Be-Ḥozai, was called Hormuzd Ardashīr in Sāsānid times and Sūq al-Ahwāz after the Islamic conquests. According to Ibn Khordādhbeh, it had been a commercial hub of the Jewish so-called “Rahdhānites” in the 9th century and thanks to its main port at the duǧayl, main base of the Neṭīrā, a Jew- 49 Cohen, 1994, p. 90. 50 L. Lockhart, al-Ahwāz, EI-online. 180 Essays and Articles ish clan of bankers. Joseph b. Phinehas and Aaron b. Amram (Pinḫās and Hārūn b. ʿ Imrān), the Jewish tax-collectors of al-Muqtadir, owned large estates there and a profitable bazaar. Intensive commercial correspondence with businesspartners in Fès and Cairo give proof of the close relations to the West and the significance of the town.51 A socalled “Ahwāz-Law-Report” dating from the first day of the month of Shebat 1332 (1020/1021 C.E.) contains the claim of Hannah, a sister of the Tustarī-brothers, who had caused a legal dispute over stolen and fenced pearls, and represents a sound Judaeo-Persian jurisprudence within the vivid Jewish community.52 Tustar (Shushtar) owed its commercial and strategic prominence to the proximity to the river Kārūn and the legend of being the more beautiful of the two city foundations Shūsh (Susa) and Shūshtar of the mythical King Hūshang, hence bearing the Persian comparative suffix “-tar”.53 The town had been famous for its modists, its apparel industry, and its Ṭirāz manufacture – particularly for production of the kiswa for the Kaʿba in Mekka. According to the philosopher and historian Miskawayh (Miskōye/ Mushkōye), who was born in Rayy in 932 and in charge of the Muhallabid viziers in Būyid Baghdad, Jews had a huge share in the economic prosperity of tenth century Tustar, then deemed to be the Jewish world capital. The “Maḥallat at-Tustariyyīn” as part of Baghdad‘s quarter al-Karḫ and residential area of traders and notables from Ḫūzistān, had superseded Tustar as trade-capital of the empire in the 10th century and hosted the “most important” Jewish community. Here the Banū Sahl took refuge on their way from Tustar to Fusṭaṭ, following the persecution of the Jews under the Būyids.54 51 Fischel, 1969, p. 31, and: http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/judaica/ ejud_0002_0001_0_00607.html retrieved 06.03.2021, Gil, 2004, pp. 524/525. 52 Margoliouth, 1899, pp. 671-675, Shaked, 1971, pp. 180–182. 53 Kramers/Bosworth, Shūshtar, EI-online. 54 Lombard,1992, pp. 208/209, Fischel, 1969, pp. 69/70. 181 Gabriele Dold-Ghadar – From Balkh to Ṭanğa The old and legendary Sāsānid port of Bandar-e Sīrāf in the province of Būshehr (Bū Shahr) used to rival Baṣra. However, after the diversion of the trade routes and the earthquakes of 976/978, the weakening of the Būyids and an increasing piracy in the southern Gulf, Sīrāf lost its prominence. Only at the outset of the 12th century it experienced a certain revival of business with the tycoons of the Nākhudāclan and the reeder Abū ’l-Qāsim Rāmišt.55 “Persian and Baṣran” commercial operatives at Jeddah, Siǧilmāsa, Tripoli, Beirut, or other terminals of the pilgrimage routes as well as the entrepôts Cairo and Alexandria, where “Persian traders” had established a large and influential colony already in the early 8th century, give an idea of the dimensions of medieval international financial business.56 “Clerical economy” – common practice already in the days of the Zoroastrian Sāsānids and politically decisive in the struggles between the Ṣafawids and the Bazaris of Tehran in the 16th century – had been established in the Mediterranean as well: relationships by marriage should warrant might and wealth and are attested by more than two hundred letters in the Cairo Geniza. The exegete Nissīm b. Jacob b. Nissīm b. Shahin of the Ben-Nissīm-clan, who hailed from Baghdad, received his first religious education from his father Jacob b. Nissīm, dean of the yeshiva (Jewish highschool) in Kairouan. Nissīm b. Jacob b. Nissīm b. Shahin, being father-in-law of Samuel ha-Nagid in Granada, imparted Talmudic knowledge between Babylonia and Spain. Rabbi Nahray b. Nissīm, a merchant of Kairouan, had, after moving along with the Fāṭimids, been appointed in 1045 head of the Jewish community of Fusṭāṭ. He was executive in the voluminous trade of precious metals, textiles, furs and spices, particularly between Sicily and the “eastern countries”.57 Ḥayyim b. Jacob ha-Sephardi and his son Nissīm from Sicily were praised in a letter in the year 1030 to the 55 C.E. Bosworth, Sīrāf, EI-online. 56 Al-Kindī, 1912, p. 402, Lewis, 1951, p. 172, Mez, 1975, p. 478, Glick, 1979. p. 131. 57 Raphael, 1985, pp. 89/90. 182 Essays and Articles congregations in Kairouan and al-Mahdiyya for their intervention to prevent the confiscation of the Jewish cemetery in Sicily.58 With implementation of the new Fāṭimid nucleus of Fusṭāṭ, not only the emporium Kairouan, but as well Baghdad lost importance, and the enticement of Jewish bankers from Baghdad to Cairo touched a sensitive spot of the ʿAbbāsid economy.59 East-West-Flow of traders Due to the weakening of the ʿAbbāsid Caliphate, multitudinous merchants from Iran and Iraq and the eastern provinces of the expanding Islamic world are said to have been forced to migrate to its westernmost frontiers as far as Spain.60 In 712, Iranian traders from Khwārezmia and numerous rabbis and scholars established themselves in the realm of the Khazars when Qutaiba ibn Muslim, appointed governor on behalf of ʿAbd al-Malik in Khorāsān, had expelled the Jewish population from the Oxus. Thanks to the patronage of the Khazar aristocracy, who had converted to Jewry, they were able to extend the commercial network as far as Muslim Spain. The Cairo Geniza mentions a trader from Khorāsān, who used to bring his textiles personally to the markets of Sevilla, a fact that suggests even “direct” trafficking between Khorāsān and Andalusia.61 “Pontos Euxeinos” – a Mediterranean domestic market Journeys from Kairouan, Palermo, or Sevilla to Egypt or from Marseille or Kairouan to the Levant were considered an unspectacular undertaking and Jewish passengers on commuting ships between Sevilla and Alexandria were humdrum on a “friendly and inviting pontos 58 Nadia Zeldes, Palermo and Sicily, EI-online. 59 Fischel, 1969, p. 70. 60 Cohen, 1994, p. 90. 61 Glick, 1979, p. 132, Goitein, 2010, pp. 308–311, Goitein, 1973, pp. 29, 83, 122, 281, 284, Goitein, 1999, p. 214. 183 Gabriele Dold-Ghadar – From Balkh to Ṭanğa euxeinos” (in fact an ancient euphemism and sobriquet for the Black Sea), that encouraged even merchants suffering from chronic diseases to go on trips from Egypt to Constantinopel.62 Al-Maqqarī compared the “landlocked lake” of the Mediterrean to that of the Caspian Sea – and with its “artificial passage to the Atlantic” had considered it an “inland water”, fortified by the wharfages of Alexander the Great both at the Spanish and Moroccan coast. 63 In discussing the “casus belli” for the Persian Wars, Herodotus gives us an idea of the scale of trade within the Phoenician and Iranian radius: “Those of the Persians who have knowledge of history declare that the Phenicians first began the quarrel. These, they say, came from that which is called the Erythraian Sea to this of ours; and having settled in the land where they continue even now to dwell, set themselves forthwith to make long voyages by sea. And conveying merchandise of Egypt and of Assyria they arrived at other places and also at Argos; now Argos was at that time in all points the first of the States within that land which is now called Hellas.”64 Tyrians, with their commercial settlements all over the Mediterranean area, are suspected of having imposed their language, which is closely related to Hebrew, on the Mediterranean coast. “Jews from the Mideast” are said to have established the first small trading communities on the Iberian Peninsula already in the first century B.C. The name of Phoenician trade colonies Qart ḥadasht (“new town”) or Qādis (Phoenician: Gad(d)ir) is reflected in North African Carthage (built in 814 B.C.) and in Cartagena with its early Jewish population (founded in 227 B.C.).65 62 Gerber, 1997, p. 151, Goitein, 1999, pp. 42–43. 63 De Gayangos, 1840, vol. I, book 1, pp. 27/28. 64 THE HISTORY OF HERODOTUS, trsl. G. C. Macaulay, vol. I, http://www.gutenberg.org/files/2707/2707-h/2707-h.htm. 65 Hirschberg, 1974, p. 3, Yer. Sheb. vi. in: Jewish Encyclopedia, http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/articles/4084-cartagena, retrieved 06.03.2021, Lowney, 2005, p. 22. 184 Essays and Articles The term Maghrib used to stand for whole of northern Africa west of Egypt, including Muslim Spain and Andalusia, and made it difficult to determine exact provenance of men and merchandise, which thus could hail from Morocco, as well as from Algeria, Tunisia, Libya, Sicily, or Spain. Andalusian merchants moved without any restrictions within the Mediterranean, that had been considered at least since the 7th century to be a free trade zone of unlimited commerce. In the long run and in consequence of the political-economic changes in Kairouan, an extension of the Mediterranean common market by the establishment of an Andalusian-Moroccan domestic market with the hubs Marrakesh and Fès for trade and residence of Andalusian merchants came into being from the 12th century on.66 Trading houses Trade routes, logistics and trading houses with their far-reaching political and fiscal power were the pillars of successful international commerce in medieval times. Traders used to be polyglot cosmopolitans and held diverse social functions – comparable to the Babylonian clans Egibi and Murašū, who were the economic engines of international trade in Mesopotamia during the 4th century B.C., owing their economic boom to “options beyond or at the expense of the economic settings of the community”67. The same may apply mutatis mutandis to the Jewish trading house of Abū ‘l-Faraǧ Yaʿqūb b. Yūsuf b. Killis, who was born in 930 in Baghdad, from where he set out together with his father to Syria and finally occupied an influential post with the trade commission in Ramla/Palestine. Malpractices forced him to flee to Egypt, where he was in charge of the state finances under Emir Abū ’l-Misk Kāfūr and led the country to an unusual prosperity. After 66 Lewis, 1951, p. 83, Goitein, 2010, pp. 308–311, Goitein, 1999, pp. 43, 61, 214, Goitein, 1973, pp. 29, 83, 122, 281, 284. 67 Wiesehöfer, 1998, p. 30, Meuleau, 1999, p. 336. 185 Gabriele Dold-Ghadar – From Balkh to Ṭanğa converting to Islam, he was appointed wazīr al-aǧall, the first vizier of the Fāṭimid dynasty, in 977.68 Cairo Geniza and Firkovicz collections keep records of the commercial activities and the success of the Killis during the years 990-1050, the Kujik (Np.: Kučik), those of Joseph ha-Kohen b. Yazdād (11th century) and they reveal financial transactions of the bankers Sahlawayh b. Ḥayyim and Ibn Šaʿyā,69 – exemplifying traders’ careers of the time and their share in the prosperity of the region. Of particular significance in the Cairo Geniza are approximately 1200 complete commercial letters and contracts of four generations of the Karaite Tustarī-clan,70 who initially dwelled in the trade centers Tustar in southwestern Iran and in Ahwāz. Following the westward-shift of commerce in the mid 10th century, the first generation of the Tustarī eventually migrated from Iran via Iraq to Fāṭimid Egypt – probably triggered by the persecution of the Jews of Tustar under Būyid rule as already mentioned above. The Genizot disclose details of Persian Jews settling in the Jewish quarter of Old-Cairo and their role in trade and commerce. Baghdad was the first point of refuge as well for the Banū Sahl on their way to Fusṭāṭ, where they later held influential posts in the financial sector as so-called ǧahābidha. One of the documents of their offspring in Fusṭāṭ dates back to 1026 and presents the venture of their left-behind estate in Ahwāz. Abū al-Faḍl Sahl (Yashar), Abū Yaʿqūb Yūsuf (Joseph), and Abū Sahl Saʿīd (Saʿadya), belonging to the second generation of the clan, extended commercial activities from Fusṭāṭ westwards to northern Africa, Sicily, and Al-Andalus with shipments of exorbitant value often enough exceeding ten thousands of dinars. In the early 11th century, they held banking agencies at the main trade centers Baghdad, Tikrit, Aleppo, Damascus, and Tyre and thus played a key roll as pivots in the chain of long-distant merchants and civil 68 Canard, Ibn Killis, EI-online. 69 Basch Moreen, Judeo-Persian Communities of Iran, EIr-online. 70 Johnson, 1987, pp. 184–185. 186 Essays and Articles servants linking the academies of Pumbeditha, Fusṭāṭ, and Kairouan. Responses, rebuffed by the competitors, were shipped by the Tustarīs from Baghdad to Fusṭāṭ, where the Tāhertī-clan took delivery and conveyed them to Kairouan. Religious tolerance and earmarked cooperations between Karaites, Rabbanites and the Iraqi geonim seemed to be quite common and fruitful in the days of the Fāṭimids. Not estonishing therefore, that, even after their conversion to Rabbanite law aligned to Iraqi and Palestine schools, they continued contracts negotiated by Karaite courts. Abū al-Faḍl Sahl at-Tustarīs oldest sons, Abū Saʿd Ibrāhīm and Abū Naṣr Hesed, made their careers as cambists and import-dealers of precious luxury goods under al-Ḥākim (996–1021). As counsel of al-Mustanṣir’s (1029–1094) mother, a former slave from Sudan, whom he had sold to the court, Abū Saʿd Ibrāhīm obtained the rank of a “viceroy” in 1036. This made him the most important figure at the Fāṭimid court, the modabber ad-dawla. Both Tustarī brothers fell prey to court intrigues in the mid 11th century.71 The Banū ʿAwkal were of Persian stock as well. They migrated to the Maghrib at the outset of the 10th century, but, as so called mašāriqa, they were met with a refusal by the community members. The bigger part of the clan therefore moved with the Fāṭimids to Egypt in 969 to wind up affairs with the Maghrib and Sicily. Joseph b. ʿ Awkal had been an official agent of the two Babylonian academies.72 The clan’s patriarch Abū Bishr Jacob, being simultaneously representative of the Babylonian yeshivot, had made Fusṭāṭ headquarter of his worldwide operating enterprises, and Joseph b. ʿAwkal acted as an agent for donations and legal opinions. His son, Abū Yaʿqūb Abū ʾl-Faraǧ Joseph b. ʿAwkal, succeeded him and obtained economical and socio-political prestige as an aristocratic cosmopolitan merchant, who maintained close business relations with Muslim Mediterranean commercial partners. Due 71 Fischel, 1969, pp. XII, 69, 70, 79, Marina Rustow, Tustarī-Family, EI-online. 72 Johnson, 1987, pp. 184–185. 187 Gabriele Dold-Ghadar – From Balkh to Ṭanğa to the conversion of many family members, evidences of the clan in the Genizot ebb away after the 11th century.73 Three generations of both, the Banū Sahl and the Banū ʿAwkal, interacted closely with the Tāhertī, to whom they were linked through trade, education and marriage. Two offsprings of the company’s founder Barhūn b. Ismāʿīl at-Tāhertī were fellow students of the Tustarīs in Fusṭāṭ.74 Their main operating field was North Africa, Sicily, and Al- Andalus and they exerted great influence within the Jewish Berber communities, in Egypt and the east. Furthermore, the clan was engaged in money transfers from the Mesopotamian yeshivot to the diaspora Jews in the West and in parallel businesses with responses, the socalled sheʿelot ve teshuvot. Despite their international engagements, Jewish merchants ranged within the given legal framework of the Babylonian schools, that were economically and spiritually closely linked to the communities of Damietta, Rosetta (Rašīd), and Alexandria.75 According to S. D. Goitein, Ḥesed at-Tustarī was married to the daughter of Joseph b. ʿ Awkal, whereas Moshe Gil claims, that the same tied the knot with the daughter of the Karaite commercial tycoon Sahlawayh b. Ḥayyim and fathered Abū Faḍl Sahl at-Tustarī. The one does not necessarily exclude the other. Heads of states and traders’ dynasties appreciated “diplomatic marriages” to meet potential difficulties or troubles with business partners in long-distance trading. This goes for Samuel Luḫtūš, head of a leading Jewish family in 11th century Spain, who was married to a lady of an influential trading house in Old Cairo with familial bonds to Spain and Sahlān b. Abraham, head of the Iraqi Jewish community of Old Cairo, who married the daughter of the Jewish chief judge of Siǧilmāsa in 1037. Likewise, the daughter of Nissīm b. Yaʿqūb b. Šāhīn, Rabbi of Kairouan, supposingly of Persian origin, had been – apparently 73 Bareket, The Ibn ʿAwkal Family, EI-online. 74 Cohen, 1994, p. 101, Rustow, The Tahertī Family, EI-online. 75 Lombard, 1992, p. 215, Ashtor, 1968, pp. 1–22, Fischel, 1969, p. 31. 188 Essays and Articles unhappily – married to the son of Samuel ha-Nagid, Jewish vizier of the Zīrids of Granada.76 Diversification was a successful model even in the Middle Ages: the great traveller and geographer Abū ’l-Qāsim b. ʿAlī al-Naṣībī b. Ḥawqal, born in 943 in Nisibis, is said to have combined mercantile and politico-religious objectives. His travels between North Africa, Spain, Egypt, Sicily, and Khorāsān and Transoxania via Armenia, Iraq and Ḫūzistān, described in his Kitāb al-Masālik wa ’l-mamālik and Kitāb Ṣūrat al-arḍ, have probably been performed for commercial reasons.77 Whether or not Muḥammad b. Mufliṭ, a merchant from Jaén, took medical lessons in Baghdad in the year 919 with ar-Rāzī, who hailed from Rayy, cannot be verified. However, it is not unlikely, that traders were exposed to the scientific œvres that they collected in the Orient on behalf of al-Ḥakam II to stuff the bookshelves in his huge libraries in Córdoba.78 An anecdote, passed down by S. D. Goitein, illustrates ramified close interreligious contacts and relationships by marriage among internationally-operating trading guilds: on his deathbed in Fusṭāṭ, the Andalusian merchant Ismāʿīl Ha-Levi b. Abraham appointed an indigo-dealer from Baghdad and a banker of Iranian descent as guardian of his sole son. The contract was witnessed by Karaite and Rabbanite Jews and Muslims in the presence of a judge.79 Rahdhānites The so-called radhanī (pl. radhanīm), an organisation of 08th–11th century Jewish long-distance traders, have given reason for manifold speculation. Their merchandise comprised eunuchs and young slaves of either sexes (ǧawārī and ġilmān), silk brocade (dībāǧ),80 beaver tails 76 Schippers, Nissīm b. Yaʿqūb, Ibn Šāhīn, EI-online, Goitein, 1999, p. 48. 77 Miquel, Ibn Ḥawqal, EI-online. 78 Vernet Ginés, 1978, p. 21, Asín Palacios, 1978, pp. 26, 27, Fn 28. 79 Goitein, 1999, p. 293. 80 Mp.: dēbāg, dypʾk’, MacKenzie, 1971, p. 26. 189 Gabriele Dold-Ghadar – From Balkh to Ṭanğa (ǧulūd al-ḫazz) and weasel furs, sables (sammūr) and swords, the latter being conveyed to the East. From China, they used to carry on their way back musk (misk), camphor (kāfūr), ginger (zangbīlā), cinnamon (dārčīn)81, and aloe (ʿūd) to the West. In 1848, the French scholar Joseph Toussaint Reinaud assumed a Persian complex term of their name and interpreted rāh-dān as “knowing the way” or “scout”, what was generally accepted amongst scholarship. Barbier de Meynard and Moshe Gil – the latter pointed to a “land of the Rādhān” east of the Tigris, where, according to the Syriac chronicle of Seért, the Persian marzubān had his seat – presumed a labeling of residents of the eastern bank of the Tigris, respectively, the eastern Sawād, called sawād rādhān. Reinhardt Dozy detected a quarter in Kairouan of the same name with a “Bāb al-Rahādina”. Ibn Khordādbeh had been appointed ṣāḥib al-barīd wa ‘l-ḫabar and secret agent of al-Muʿtamid. He probably drew informations from the longdistance-traders, who had their headquarters in Al-Andalus and regularly frequented the international highways of those days.82 Jane Gerber and David Simonsen assumed the roots of their name Rahānīya in Nautae Rhodanici with origins in either Arles, southern France, the Rhône, or in Spain. Some interpretations follow al-Masʿūdī, who suggested a designation of Russia (lūḏʿāna or kūḏkūna).83 Maurice Lombard holds, not without reason, that the term was either derived from the old Persian town of Rhaga or from (nahr) rūḏānū (Rhône): Seleukia/Ktesiphon, the former Madāʾin or Māhōzē, had already been a hub of international trade during the early days of the ʿ Abbāsids – in addition to Daskarat al-Malik (Np.: dastagird) as a first important stop on the way to Khorāsān.84 Stefan Schreiner reminds of the social transformations in the course of the 8th century that created a new “mercantile civilisation” of the 81 Mp.: dār, dʾl (tree, wood), MacKenzie, 1971, p. 24. 82 Gil, 2004, pp. 630 ff., Gil, 1974, pp. 309, 314. 83 Simonsen, 1907, vol. 54. pp. 141, 142, Pellat, al-Rāḏhāniyya, EI-online. 84 Lombard, 1992, p. 211, note 10, Gil, 1974, pp. 320–321. 190 Essays and Articles Jewish rural population – notably the polyglot so-called radāniyyūn – intervening in culture, science, politics, and economy,85 The enigmatic phenomenon of the so-called “Rahdhānites” may have finally come to an end at the outset of the 10th century. Probably they vanished alongside the establishment of Christian trade guilds during the late 10th to 11th centuries, who drove their Jewish competitors out of the market.86 Commercial correspondence Iranian formulaic parallels on Egyptian tax-receipts that appear at a later date than those of the Khorāsān corpus, seals that perpetuate iconographic traditions of the Sāsānids, and the numerous Persian civil servants, who had been delegated to Egypt in the days of the ʿAbbāsids, give reason to suppose an early transfer of administrative practices from eastern Iran to the Mediterranean. Frantz-Murphy’s assumption that “Persian staff ” brought the term ḫarāǧ to Egypt,87 is not verifiable. However, the so-called maks (pl.: mukūs), introduced in 861 by Ibn Ṭūlūn’s dreaded treasurer Aḥmad b. al-Mudabbir, was a de facto tollage, collected at Egypt’s customs facilities al-ʿArīš, as-Suways or al-Fusṭāṭ for consumer goods of daily needs imported from Babylonia. This tax, with the Aramaic equivalent maksā, the Hebrew mekes and the Assyrian miksu, is closely associated to the chatoyant brothers Abū ’l-Ḥasan Aḥmad and Abū Isḥāḳ Ibrāhīm b. al-Mudabbir, who presumably hailed from Persia and held high posts in finance during the 9th century in Sāmarrā, Egypt, Syria, – and Ahwāz.88 Particularly from Ahwāz stem large numbers of Persian names that appear in the manifold commercial correspondence of the Cairo Geniza and suggest “inner-Persian” affairs for trade-relations between immigrant trad- 85 Schreiner, 2006, http://www.buergerimstaat.de/2_06/welten.htm retrieved 06.03.2021. 86 Cohen, 1994, p. 81, Hirschberg, 1974, p. 277. 87 Zoméno, 2007, p. 206, Frantz-Murphy, 1986, pp. 112/113. 88 Björkmann,Maks/H. L. Gottschalk, Ibn al-Mudabbir, EI-online. 191 Gabriele Dold-Ghadar – From Balkh to Ṭanğa ers from Ahwāz and their left-behind family with their estate in Iran. From the 10th century on, those Jewish immigrant merchants gradually embraced Islam and adopted Muslim names, thus making it difficult to identify them as such. Still: Persian must have been understood as a Jewish language, Arabic, however, as a non-Jewish dialect. For Persian paragraphs depicted in Judaeo-Persian letters in the Cairo Geniza, the Hebrew alphabet was used, whereas Arabic sentences were displayed by Arabic graphems.89 Among the private correspondence detected by Alexander Scheiber, there were letters dating from 1080 referring to Simḥa an-Naysābūrī, a merchant and shipping agent, who emigrated from Khorāsān to Alexandria. Subject of those letters could be for instance the sale of a Persian slave girl in 115890 and by the letter of divorce (geṭ), concerning a certain Ṣedāqā b. Eli, who had left behind his spouse in Abīward/ Khorāsān when he migrated to Ramla, we learn of the wife‘s claim for divorce and alimony.91 From angaria to azogue: “Business Persian” on the Mediterranean Loanwords take the well paved “highways” of mercantile and military enterprises. Merchants thus distribute commodities and thoughts and expedite linguistic elements. Interesting in this regard is the eastward spread of Soghdian, which had been lingua franca of the intermarried wholesale chains trading between Mesopotamia, Iran, the oases of Khorāsān, Khwārezmia, as well as Balkh, Marw, Buḫārā, Samarqand, and even Kāšgār in the days of the Sāsānids. Although not yet investigated, the fact, that the last Soghdian native speaker died in the mid- 89 Gindin, History of Judeo-Persian Research, EIr-online, Goitein, 1973, pp. 34/35. 90 Gil, 2004, p. 529, Scheiber, 1981, p. 268. 91 Shivtiel/Niessen, 2006, p. 501, Nr. 7767. 192 Essays and Articles dle of the 19th century in Ragusa/Sicily,92 could indicate that Soghdian trade contacts had ranged as far as the Mediterranean. Of the sectoral Persian vocabulary, that found its way into Spanish, only a small selection shall be rendered here: Angaria (Np.: āngāra) was used for accounting book/cost estimate/draft/diary – and for domestic staff or officially mandated delays of ships. Arrisco/riesgo (Mp.: rozīk) stands for livelihood/risk or auge (Mp.: aug/auǧ), that reflects boom93 and the measuring unit almucio (Np.: muštak/mušt) meant a fist or handful. Terms still in use are cofradía (gurnhān94), designating a cooperative, aduana (Np.: dīwān, Mp.: dibīr/dpy(w)r’)95 stands for a register, customs office, or chancellery. The Spanish word laca can be traced back to Skr.: lākšā via Np.: lak (stain), Ar.: lakk for varnish; alfaneque (Np.: fanak) for marten, in Old Spanish it describes furs in general. Shagreen was initially known in Spain as chagrén (Np.: saġrī, sāġrī, ṣaġrī), later as tafilete (connoting by the Morrocan region of Tāfīlālt) and azogue (Np.: zīwa or ǧīwa) goes back to zīstan, the Persian verb for “to live”, and stood for mercury. In an albacería (Np.: abzār), oil, vinegar, dried vegetables, and cod were sold. Azulejos, blue faience tiles (ár.hisp.: lazawárd, (Np.: lāžuward/lāǧaward/laǧvard/lažvard, Skr.: rājāvarta), carmesi (carmine – ár.hisp.: qarmazí, Np.: qermezī, Mp.: karmīr/klmyr), borraj (borax – ár.hisp.: bórax, Np.: būrāh/bure) were transported by a caravana (Np.: kārwān) to the bazars (Np.: bāzār, Mp. vāčār/vāçār) and needed a çak (passport/document/contract/cheque – Sp.: cheque) for merchandising. The labeling for the Naranja, (“Seville Orange”), that reached Spain via Sicily during the 10th century, originated in Skr. nāranga and Np.: nāranǧ/nārang and ended up in Spanish kitchens like spinache (espinaca), that has its linguistic roots in ár.hisp.: isbináẖ[a], Np.: ispanāḫ/espenāẖ, cabial/caviar (Np.: ḫāwyār/çaviyār) and the marinated fish escabeche, reflecting the Per- 92 Wiesehöfer, 1998, p. 166, Lombard, 1971, p. 57, 113. 93 Ibrahim, 1991. 94 McClain, 2011, vol. 2, p. 693. 95 MacKenzie, 1971, p. 26. 193 Gabriele Dold-Ghadar – From Balkh to Ṭanğa sian marinated beef sikbāǧ al-bagar. All those delicacies were kept in either an alcarraza, an earthen jar (Np.: karrāz), or the carboy damajuana (named after a basketry in Dāmġān, northeast of Tehran). “Bird’s milk” and alfalfa “If thou seekest for bird’s milk, by Allāh thou shalt find it in Seville.”96 The dimensions of foreign trade between Al-Andalus and northern Africa, Egypt, Syria, Arabia, Iraq, “Persia, Khorāsān, and India”97 are far-ranging. Although a virtual market for “bird’s milk” did not, of course, exist, almost every conceivable commodity was merchandised. Not only buffalos and sheep were sold: Berber horses were vended in Spain, Egypt, and Sicily, and horses were consigned as well via the courts on the Persian Gulf as far as India, Syria, and Egypt. Along with the imported cattle, Persian alfalfa (Mp.: aspast, ár.hisp.: alfáṣfaṣ[a], Ar.: fiṣfiṣah) migrated to the feeding troughs of Mesopotamia, Egypt and Spain, and eventually moved on with the Spanish colonial masters to Mexico and Peru in the 16th century.98 From Shīrāz to Sharīsh There was speculations on grapes and the world-famous “sherry” of the Andalusian city of Jerez de la Frontiera, which is reportedly rich in fruit, seafood, ambergris, olives, figs and wine,99 and fired the phantasy of oenophiles. The quatrains of ʿ Omar Khayyām eternalised Shīrāz – in his times called “Sharīsh” – its wine, that, according to the trave- 96 Modified Andalusian proverb satirizing the native city oft he Andalusian scholar Abū ’l-Walīd Ismāʿīl b. Muḥammad aš-Šaqundī (–629/1231–2), cf. Al-Maqqarī, 1949, vol. II, 1949, trsl. de Gayangos, 1840, vol. 1. p. 57. 97 Imamuddin, 1981, pp. 130 ff. 98 Lombard, 1971, pp. 188,189, Lokotsch, 1927, p. 48. 99 Ar-Rāzī, 1953, pp. 96–97. 194 Essays and Articles logues, must still have been famous in the 18th century.100 The seedless varietals rīsh bābā (Mp.: rēš/lyš meaning “beard”101) and askeri must have been quite popular and “Armenians and Jews” are said to have pressed the famous wine of “Shirauz” for the “Indian market” in October and November, and shipped it to “Abu Shehr and other places on the Persian Gulf ”.102 Elamite clay tablets give proof of the celebrity of Shīrāz, capital of Fārs (Old Persian “Širājiš”) and the domain of the Achaemenids and Sāsānids. It is likely that the numerous Persian immigrants from Shīrāz, to whom territory around Málaga was distributed,103 brought those legendary grape-vines to Andalusia – along with the famous figs called ar-rayī. Due to the sound-shift of the Old Spanish sibilant „sh“ during the late Middle Ages, the initial letter “X” in “Xerez” became a fricative “ch” – concealing its possible roots. Banks and Bank Networks of Medieval Trading Metropolises The medieval Islamic economic system was based on irrigation and a money market with a current gold inflow over the long-distance trade routes, which, for the most part, were controlled by Persians.104 Profitincrease, however, required an improvement of the already well-established banking- and credit-system. Cashless payment transactions: Suftāǧa, Ǧāhbadh, and Fīǧ The Persian term suftāǧa stands for “replacement form, order, merchants credit”. Those amwāl safātiǧ had their origin in Fārs, Iṣfahān, and the eastern provinces of the empire.105 Etymologically, the term 100 Tavernier, 1970, pp. 309–310. 101 McKenzie, 1971, p. 70. 102 Francklin, 1976, pp. 142–144. 103 Shafa, 2000, p. 166, Al-Maqqarī, 1840, vol. 1. p. 48, Fn 102. 104 Glick, 1979, p. 129, Lewis, 1951, p. 14. 105 Fischel, 1969, p. 17, 19. 195 Gabriele Dold-Ghadar – From Balkh to Ṭanğa may be traced back to the Middle Persian verb suftan106 (swptا), which means “to perforate, to drill” because of the cord, that was scaled after being pulled through the folded or rolled document. In medieval international financial traffic, it was used in addition to the Arabic terms ḥawāla or ṣaqq for the transfer of goods. In trade jargon, however, suftāǧa prevailed for monetary transactions of pre-determined amounts. Merchants could answer a broker’s bill of exchange with affiliated agents anywhere. So, in the Middle Ages, cashless payment must have been a quite popular practice on the international financial market. It proved convenient and uncomplicated and permitted swift remittances over huge distances. Money transfers from Kairouan to the academies in Sura or Pumbeditha and even bribes and gratuities were transacted by bills of credit. Tax receipts of the mid-7th century issued by the state treasury in Baghdad that were sent to Khorāsān suggest, that tax revenues from the provinces of the ʿAbbāsid Empire had been transferred in the same manner.107 Due to the Persian names on those checks – among others those of members of the Tustarī-clan, who were responsible for the administration of deposits and the orders of funds by means of the suftāǧa – the authoritative court-bankers of the time, supposedly were either “Persians” or “Basrians” from Iraq. Those so-called ǧahābidha (sing.: ǧhbḏ) were known as „men of keen mind“.108 The term is traced back to the Middle Persian gāhbed (gʾsptا) and was interpreted as „treasurer or cashier” or „cambist“.109 Due to their double function, traders occupied this post throughout the days of the ʿAbbāsids al-Manṣūr, Harūn ar-Rašīd, and al-Mahdī (8th to 13th centuries). In addition to their mercantile profession, they controlled currency exchange business and interest-bearing loan transactions. With the fluctuating value of dinar and dirham, the post of the māl al-ǧahābidha or ḥaqq 106 MacKenzie, 1971, p. 78. 107 Fischel, 1969, p. 18, 19. 108 Lewis, 1951, p. 171, Mez, 1975, pp. 476–478, Wehr, 1976, p. 128. 109 MacKenzie, 1971, pp. 34, 205, V. Karabacek, 1887, II, p. 169, Wahrmund, 1887, I, p. 464. 196 Essays and Articles al-ǧahābidha became even more important.110 Balancing of monthly or yearly accounts was disclosed in the so-called dīwān al-ǧahbaḏa and provided by the ǧāhbadh, to whom caliphs, viziers and other court officials either entrusted their legal or illegally-achieved fortunes, or whom they asked often enough, for tremendous credits at high interests. By a caliphal decree of al-Muqtadir in 908, the post was restricted to Christians and Jews,111 hence, the merchants and bankers Yūsuf b. Pinḫās and Hārūn b. ʿImrān, being established ǧahābiḏa of Ahwāz, were appointed ǧahābiḏat al-ḥadra (court financiers). At the outset of the 10th century, they eventually founded the first Islamic state bank in history – and adverted state bankruptcy.112 Analogue to the relay of the angaria/angareion of the Achaemenid postal system,113 so-called fuyūǧ (sing. fayǧ, Np.: payk, pīk) or “fayǧ al-yahūdī” were the general commercial „postmen“ of the 11th and 12th centuries forwarding dispatches from Kairouan to Cairo or from Almería to Alexandria. Express couriers (fayǧ ṭayyār) charged one and a half dinar and provided regular weekly services between Cairo and Tyre/Ṣūr and other Syro-Palestine cities. It has been disputed, whether the term fīǧ is derived from the New Persian pīk (“messenger”) or from the Middle Persian pēšār (pyšʾا – “guide, pathfinder”).114 Either one seems possible. Conclusion Although details are often enough contradictory by their presentation, it is evident, that traders, metropolises of trade, and trading houses were closely linked within the huge Islamic economic area, that ranged from the eastern border of Khorāsān to its westernmost boundary Al- 110 V. Kremer, 1888, p. 8, Fischel, 1933, pp. 4, 339 ff., 569 ff. 111 Ibn Taghrībirdī, 1861, vol 2, p. 174: 112 Fischel, Ğahbaḏ , EI-online. 113 Wiesehöfer, 1998, pp. 115–119, Herodotus (VIII, 98). 114 Gil, 2004, p. 606, Goitein, fuyūğ, EI-online, Miskawaih, 1987, vol. 1, p. 150. dous credits at high interests. By a caliphal decree of al-Muqtadir in 908, the post was restricted to Christians and Jews,107»» hence, the merchants and bankers Yūsuf b. Pinḫās and Hārūn b. ̔ Imrān, being established ǧahābiḏa of Ahwāz, were appointed ǧahābiḏat al-ḥadra (court financiers). At the outset of the 10th century, they eventually founded the first Islamic state bank in history– and adverted state bankruptcy.108 Analogue to the relay of the angaria/angareion of the Achaemenid postal system,109 so-called fuyūǧ (sing. fayǧ, Np.: payk, pīk) or “fayǧ al-yahūdī” were the general commercial “postmen” of the 11th and 12th centuries forwarding dispatches from Kairouan to Cairo or from Almería to Alexandria. Express couriers (fayǧ ṭayyār) charged one and a half dinar and provided regular weekly services between Cairo and Tyre/Ṣūr and other Syro-Palestine cities. It has been disputed, whether the term fīǧ is derived from the New Persian pīk (“messenger”) or from the Middle Persian pēšār (pyšʼا – “guide, pathfinder”).110 Either one seems possible. Conclusion Although details are often enough contradictory by their presentation, it is evident, that traders, metropolises of trade, and trading houses were closely linked within the huge Islamic economic area, that ranged from the eastern border of Khorāsān to its westernmost boundary Al- Andalus. Intermarriages, “joint ventures”, and diversification were considered promotional factors about the economy and prosperity. The oscillating East-West-flow of trade and culture that had its initial point already in the days of the expanding Achaemenid Empire, eventually brought “know-how” with the corresponding technical terms 107 Ibn aghrībirdī, 1861, vol 2, p. 174: .«امر المقتدر ان ال یستخدم احد اليهود و النصارى اال في الطب و الجهبذة فقط» 108 Fischel, ahbaḏ, EI-online, retrieved 10/20/2013. 109 iesehöfer, 1998, pp. 115–119, erodotus ( III, 98). 110 il, 2004, p. 606, Goitein, fuyūğ, EI-online, retrieved 11/04/2013, Miskawaih, 1987, vol. 1, p. 150. 197 Gabriele Dold-Ghadar – From Balkh to Ṭanğa 197 Gabriele Dold-Ghadar – From Balkh to Ṭanğa Andalus. Intermarriages, “joint ventures”, and diversification were considered to be promotional factors in regard to the economy and prosperity. The oscillating East-West-flow of trade and culture, that had its initial point already in the days of the expanding Achaemenid empire, eventually brought “know-how” with the corresponding technical terms from the Achaemenid Kings Road to the Strait of Gibraltar. Iranian administrative structures came into use already during the days of the Achaemenids in the western satrapies as far as Egypt and became eventually manifest in the „domestic“ Mediterranean and “Andalusian-Morrocan” markets in Islamic times. Iranian technical, financial (non-cash-payment), and cultural features made their way within the Islamic trading area and alongside the traderoutes as far as Andalusia. The water body of the Mediterranean provided brilliant preconditions concerning logistics and hence promoted the flow of message, men, merchandise, and money. Increasing standardisation of currency-structures in the Mediterranean region during the 8th century brought comparable currency, adjustment and convertibility, and a currency union, that fostered a cosmopolitan financial market without frontiers and facilitated international trade. Abbreviations • Ar., Arabic • ár. hisp., árabe hispánico • Mp., Middle Persian • Np., New Persian • Skr., Sanskrit • Sp., Spanish 198 Essays and Articles Primary Sources Al-Balāḏurī, Aḏmad b. Yaḏyā b. ḏābir, Kitāb Futūḏ al-Buldān, ed. Fuat Sezgin, Islamic Geography, vol. 42, Frankfurt, 1992 (repr. de Goeje, Leiden 1866) Al-ḏuḏrī, Abū Isḏāq Ibrāhīm Ibn ḏAlī al-Qairawānī, Zahr al-ādāb wa-ḏamar al-albāb, ed. ḏAlī Muḏammad al-Biḏāwī, 2 vols., Cairo, 1985 (1969) Al-Kindī, Abū Yusuf Yaḏqūb bin Isḏāq, Kitāb al-Wulāh wa Kitāb al-Quḏāh, ed. Guest, Leiden, 1912 Al-Maqqarī, Aḏmad Ibn-Muḏammad, Nafḏ aḏ-ḏīb min ġuḏn al-Andalus ar-raḏīb wa-ḏikr wazīrihā Lisān-ad-Dīn Ibn-al-ḏaḏīb , ed. Muḏammad Muḏyi ad-Dīn, Cairo, 1949 Al-Yaḏqūbī, Aḏmad b. Abī Yaḏqūb, Kitāb al-Buldān, ed. F. Sezgin, Islamic Geography, vol. 40, Frankfurt, 1992 (repr. de Goeje, Leiden, 1892) Ibn al-Abbār, Al-Hḏulla as-Siyarāḏ, ed. Hḏusain Muḏnis, 2 vols., Cairo, 1964 Ibn Burd, Dīwān, vol. 1, Cairo, 1950, pp. 377–380 Ibn al-Qūḏiyya, Taḏrīḏ iftitāḏ al-Andalus, Algiers, 1989 Ibn Baškuwāl, ḏalaf b. ḏAbd-al-Malik, Kitāb asḏ-Sḏila, Cairo, 1966 Ibn Baḏḏūḏa, Ar-Riḏla, ed. H. A. R. Gibb, London, 1994 Ibn ḏIḏārī al-Marrākušī, Kitāb al-Bayān al-Muġrib fī Aḏbār Mulūk al-Andalus wa’l-Maġrib, ed. Dozy, Beirut, 4 vols., 1980, (repr. Leiden, 1951) Ibn Khordādhbeh, Kitāb al-Masālik wa-l-Mamālik, de Goeje, Leiden, 1992, repr. 1889 Ibn Taghrībirdī, Abū ’l-Maḏāsin Yūsuf b. ḏAbdallāh, An-Nuḏūm az-Zāhira fī Mulūk Misḏr wa‘l-Qāhira, ed. Juynboll, Leiden, 1861 Miskawaih, Abū-ḏAlī Ahḏmad Ibn-Muhḏammad, Kitāb Taḏārib al-umam, ed. Amedroz, Baghdad, 1964 General Bibliography Ashtor, E., The Jews and the Mediterranean Economy 10th–15th Centuries, London, 1983 idem, The Number of Jews in Medieval Egypt, in: Journal of Jewish Studies XIX, London, 1968 199 Gabriele Dold-Ghadar – From Balkh to Ṭanğa Asín Palacios, Šāḏilīes y Alumbrados, in: AL-Andalus, vol. X, 1945, S. 1 ff., 255 ff. idem, The Mystical Philosophy of Ibn Masarra and his Followers, Leiden, 1978 Bengtson, H., Griechen und Perser, Frankfurt a. M., 1999 Boulnois, L., Die Straßen der Seide, Wien/Berlin/Stuttgart, 1964 Braun, Th., Das Geschichtswerk des Herodot, Frankfurt a. M., 2001 Bresciani, E., Ägypten und das Perserreich, in: Hermann Bengtson, Griechen und Perser, Frankfurt a. M., 1999 Castro, A., La Realidad historica de España, Mexico, 1973 Cohen, M.R., Under Crescent and Cross, Princeton, 1994 De Gayangos, P., The History of the Mohammedan Dynasties in Spain, London, 1840 Dold-Ghadar, G., Pers–Andalus Iranische Kulturdenkmäler in „al-Andalus al-aqḏā“, Berlin, 2016 Dozy, R.P.A., Ibn ḏAdhārī: Al-Bayano l-Mogrib, Histoire de L’Afrique et de L’Espagne, 3 vols., Leyden, 1848–1851 Fischel, W.J., The Origin of Banking in medieval Islam, in JRAS, London, 1933 Jews in the Economic and Political Life of Medieaval Islam, New York, 1969 Francklin, W., Observations made on a Tour from Bengal to Persia in the Years 1786-7, repr. London, 1790, Teheran, 1976 Frantz-Murphy, G., The Agrarian Administration of Egypt from the Arabs to the Ottomans, Economics of State in early Islamic Egypt, Cairo, 1986 Frye, R., The Merchant World of the Sogdians, in: The Heritage of Central Asia, Princeton, 1996 Gaube, H., Arabosasanidische Numismatik, Braunschweig, 1973 Gerber, J.S., My Heart is in the East, in: Nicholas de Lange, The illustrated History of the Jewish People, London, 1997 Gil, M., Jews in Islamic Countries in The Middle Ages, Leiden, Boston, 2004 idem, The Rādhānite Merchants, in: JESHO, XVII, I, Leiden, 1974 200 Essays and Articles Glick, Th., Islamic and Christian Spain in the Early Middle Ages, New Jersey, 1979 Goitein, S.D., A Mediterranean Society, Los Angeles, 6 Vols., London, 1999 idem, Jews and Arabs, New York, 1955 idem, Letters of Medieval Jewish Traders, Princeton, 1973 idem, Studies in Islamic History, Leiden, 2010 Halm, H., Die Schia, Darmstadt, 1988 Hirschberg, H.Z. (J.W.), A History of the Jews in North Africa, Leiden, 1974 Hitti, P.K., History of the Arabs, New York, 1940 idem, Lebanon in History from the earliest Times to the Present, NewYork, 1967 Ibrahim, J., Persisches Lehngut in europäischen Sprachen, Wiesbaden, 1991 Imamuddin, S.M., Muslim Spain 711–1492 A.D., A Sociological Study, Leiden, 1981 Johnson, S.P., A History of the Jews, London, 1987 Kennedy, H., The Armies of the Caliphs, London/New York, 2001 Kohut, A., Was hat die talmudische Eschatologie aus dem Parsismus aufgenommen ?, in: ZDMG, XXI, 4, 1869 Lévi-Provençal, E., La Description de l’Espagne d‘Aḏmad al-Rāzī in: Al-Andalus, XVIII, 1953, supplement Lewis, A., Naval Power and Trade in the Mediterranean 500–1100, New York, 1951 Lewis, B., Die Juden in der islamischen Welt, München, 1987 Lombard, M. L’Islam dans sa première grandeur, Montreal, 1971 idem, Blütezeit des Islam. Eine Wirtschafts- und Kulturgeschichte 8.–11. Jahrhundert, Frankfurt a. 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I, Tel Aviv, 1971 Shivtiel/Niessen, Letters of Isaac Nīsābūrī, a Persian residing in Alexandria,Taylor-Schechter new series, Cambridge, 2006 Simonsen, D., in: Revue des Etudes Juives, vol. 54, Paris, 1907 Smith, C./Melville,Ch.,Christians and Moors in Spain, vol. 3, Warminster, 1992 Tavernier, Voyages en Perse, repr. Geneva, 1970 Vallvé Bermejo, J., España en el Siglo VIII: Ejército y Sociedad, in: Al-Andalus, Madrid, Granada, XLIII, 1978 Vernet Ginés, J., La Cultura Hispanoarabe en Oriente y Occidente, Barcelona, 1978 Von Karabacek, J., Mitteilungen aus der Sammlung der Papyrus Erzherzog Rainer, vol. II, Wien, 1887 202 Essays and Articles Von Kremer, A., Über das Einnahmebudget des Abbasiden-Reiches vom Jahre 306 H, Wien, 1888 Wiesehöfer, J., Das antike Persien, Düsseldorf/Zürich, 1998 Zakeri, M., Sāsānid Soldiers in Early Muslim Society, Wiesbaden, 1995 Zoméno, A., From Al-Andalus to Khurasan: Documents from the Medieval Muslim World, ed. Petra M. Sijpesteijn, Leiden, 2007 Works of reference Corriente, F., A Dictionary of Andalusi Arabic, Leiden, 1997 Diccionario de la Lengua Española, Real Academia Española, 2009/2010 (online-edition) EI, Encyclopaedia of Islam, 1954 EIr, Encyclopaedia Iranica, Káshan, 1969 Kent, R.G., Old Persian, New Haven/Connecticut, 1950 Lokotsch, K., Etymologisches Wörterbuch der europäischen (germanischen, romanischen und slavischen) Wörter orientalischen Ursprungs, Heidelberg, 1927 MacKenzie, D.N., A concise Pahlavi Dictionary, London, 1971 Wahrmund, A. Handwoerterbuch der arabischen und deutschen Sprache, Giessen, 1887 Wehr, H., Arabisches Wörterbuch, Beirut, 1976 Journals Al-Andalus, Madrid Israel Oriental Studies, Tel Aviv, (1971-1980), Leiden, Köln u.a., (1991–1996) JESHO, Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient, Leiden Journal of Jewish Studies, London JAOS, Journal of the American Oriental Society, New Haven, Ann Arbor JRAS, Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society, London JQR, The Jewish Quarterly Review, Philadelphia Revue des Študes Juives, Paris ZDMG, Zeitschrift der Deutschen Morgenländischen Gesellschaft, Wiesbaden 203 Gabriele Dold-Ghadar – From Balkh to Ṭanğa 205 9. Sardar Kohistani – Geopolitical Position of Afghanistan1 Geopolitical Position of Afghanistan Afghanistan is usually referred to as the ‘great crossroad of Asia’ (Arney 1993: 3), ‘highway of conquest’ (Fletcher 1966, Habibi 1970:30) the ‘crossroad of civilizations and religions (Hager 1983: 93, Panjshiri 2005: II, Emadi 2002: 1–2), and the ‘roundabout of the ancient world’ (Arnold Toynbee quoted in Hyman 1982: 3), as consisting of various trade routes linking Europe with the Far East and the Indian subcontinent (Gregorian 1969: 10–11) or as the ‘heart of Asia’ (Arez 1981:1, Shahrani 2001: 214). These views reflect the important geographical position this land has always possessed. At various periods in time, it has attracted the attention of different empires. It is mentioned for the first time in reports about the conquests of the Achaemenids under Cyrus, those of Alexander the Great, the Arabs, as well as the Mongols. The Great Game led to British invasions and the Cold War led to the Soviet invasion; this demonstrates the geostrategic importance of Afghanistan in the last two centuries. At the same time, following the collapse of the Soviet Union, Afghanistan gained further strategic importance in the region due to the enormous energy and mineral resources in the Central Asian states. This situation was the beginning of a new era of regional competition and conquests for energy that 1 This article is an excerpted part of dissertation published in 2011. Please see Kohistani (2011), in the Bibliography. is coined as ‘the New Great Game’ (Dittmann 2004: 66). The main players of the New Great Game were Russia, the USA, Europe, China, India, Pakistan, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Iran (Pahlevan 1998: 75–84). Since the events of September 11th the attention of the rival powers has diverted and focused on to ‘the War on Terror’ in which Afghanistan plays a pivotal role. Apparently Afghanistan’s geographic position has made it vulnerable to many invasions from Central Asia and the West (Gregorian 1969: 10–11), as well as from South Asia. Afghanistan has a triangle shape in which Hindu Kush mountains stretch from the Northeast and continues to the West. In the East it is surrounded by the Hindu Kush and its branches. In the North Amu Darya forms its border around 1200 km, while the rest of the land is surrounded mostly by deserts from the Northwest, West and South. Therefore, the borders are easy to cross and hard to be patrolled. This vulnerability is the heritage of the 19th century delimitation of borders by the British and Russians. The British brought under their control major passes like Chitral, Khybar, and Bolan all of which were strategically important for defending their hold on India. Following its creation in 1947, Pakistan inherited these passes and Afghanistan continuously remained a landlocked and vulnerable country. In the same way the Russian occupation of Panjdeh from the North was mainly aimed due to its strategic importance. The delimitations of borders carried out by the British and the Russians in the late 19th century was based on political and strategical purposes rather than ethnic or economic ones (Gregorian 1969: 10–11, Ehlers 1990: 17). Due to this reason in particular Duppre believes that Afghanistan is an artificial country, created out of tribal kingdoms as a buffer state by the British and Russians in the nineteenth century. The boundary commissions largely ignored cultural entities (Dupree 2005: 518). Furthermore, these boundaries make it hard to clarify Afghanistan’s regional location in Asia. Different resources consider it as part of the Middle East, Central Asia or South Asia. However, there is no dispute that Afghanistan’s neighbouring countries in the North (Tajik- 206 Essays and Articles istan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan) are part of Central Asia; Iran in its west is part of Middle East; and finally Pakistan is part of South Asia. The difficulty lies in the position of Afghanistan between these countries, which also makes the definition of these three regions confusing, especially in terms of their geographical extension. Therefore, neither the land nor its people can be understood without reference to the three great regions against each of which Afghanistan has its borders (Hyman 1982: 3). This is because of the geographical, historical and cultural phenomena of these regions, which are very closely intertwined and linked- making it difficult to find any clear border. There is little doubt that Afghanistan gains much of its importance and trouble from its location. It can be argued that the security, stability and sustainability of any political system in Afghanistan is highly dependent on the stability of the above mentioned regions and its neighbouring countries. The Impact of Neighbours and Borders Until 1947, Afghanistan neighboured two powerful colonial powers, in the north Russia, and in the south British India. They were the cause for both stability and instability in Afghanistan. The reign of any ruler was heavily dependent on the approval and assistance received from either rival side. Shah Shuja, Dost Mohammad, Jaqoub Khan, Abdurrahman Khan, Habibulah Khan and Nadir Khan were all either enthroned or assisted by the British. Consequently, the British viewed Shir Ali Khan and Amanullah Khan as pro-Russian and anti-British rulers of Afghanistan because both had established close ties with Russia. In 1929, the British again succeeded in enthroning Nadir Shah by providing him money, arms and tribal militia. Russian attempts to return Amanullah to power failed because Britain had better access to Afghanistan since its core areas, like Kabul, were much closer to Khybar pass. Russia had to cross the Hindu-Kush, a great natural obstacle. It took them many decades to build the Salang tunnel and later Hairatan Bridge over the 207 Sardar Kohistani – Geopolitical Position of Afghanistan Amu Darya River, which they crossed in 1979, capturing the capital and enthroning a communist regime loyal to them. Therefore, stability in Afghanistan was dependent on the balance of power between its two rival colonial neighbours. As long as they existed, they could prevent any possible intervention by a third party in Afghanistan. For example, Germany, when noticing the strategic importance of Afghanistan, tried in two different times to use it as a vital base against the British in India. The first time this happened when a German and a Turkish mission visiting Kabul provoked the Afghan authorities against Britain in India. This caused both Russia and Britain to cut the communication route they used from the West through Iran and central Afghanistan to Kabul. During the World War II, the Germans once again became interested in Afghanistan as a strategic location and wanted to use it as a base against the British rule in India. Encouraging the Afghan royal family, the Germans promised to help the Afghan monarchy regain what they called its lost territories. After this strategy failed to influence the Pro-British Musahiban family, the Germans began to use Pashtun tribal areas as a base and backed the tribes to return and enthrone Amanullah. However, it was not always up to the foreign neighbouring powers to decide about who should rule in Afghanistan. During the Cold War and the competition between the East and the West block, development projects to the emergence of different radical ideologies. Especially, through the expansion of education system, thousands of Afghans were sent to Western and Eastern countries. But, the number of those who went to the USSR was far higher than that of those who went to the West. As a result of these contacts many political parties were formed that were against the existent political structure in the country. These parties mainly included the communists (Khalq and Parcham), the Islamic movements (Ikhwan-ul-Muslemin or Muslim Brotherhood), and the ethno-nationalist parties (Afghan Melat and Setam-e-Mili). They all had one thing in common: they were against the monarchist regime, while also being fundamentally against each other’s existence. 208 Essays and Articles Although the communist and the Islamic movements were more in number and had influence, they could not undermine the monarchist regime. The Islamic movements were severely oppressed by the regime while the communists enjoyed some extent of freedom for their activities. This was because of Soviet’s strong involvement in this period. In 1978, the communist parties gained the power and the Islamic movements migrated to Pakistan and Iran, following massive and brutal oppressions. At the same time the Mujahidin were not able to form a unified party, instead, they founded seven Mujahidin parties in Pakistan and eight in Iran. The communist regime failed to avoid the persistent fractional rivalry. The same rivalry existed between the Mujahidin parties in Pakistan and Iran. In Kabul, the communist fractions fought for the position of leadership while in Pakistan and Iran the Mujahidin fought amongst themselves about the distribution of arms and money they received from Western countries. In 1992, following the collapse of the communist regime, they fought among themselves over the power in Kabul. Therefore, the different Afghan political parties in different periods of time could not succeed in eliminating their fractional rivalry through armed conflicts. They failed to develop a common idea and a strategy which could bridge the gaps of confidence that existed among them. Instead, the country was still a playground for the strategies of foreigners. Undoubtedly this persistent internal animosity was used to as an open door for interventions by the powerful players in the regions and especially for the neighbours. Historical and Territorial Development: Ariana, Khorasan and Afghanistan Regarding the question of how Afghanistan emerged to a modern state, authors generally have two opinions. Many non-Afghan authors believe that the modern state of Afghanistan was founded by Ahmad 209 Sardar Kohistani – Geopolitical Position of Afghanistan Shah Abdali2 in 1747 (Caroe 1958: XV, Klimburg 1966:32, Snoy 1975: 186, Groetzbach 1990, Arney 1990: 6). Furthermore, they believe that the first group of people who invaded this land were the Indo-Aryans around 1600 BC (Newell 1972: 35). They designated their land as “Aryanum Vijoo”, “Ariana” (Fletcher 1966: 28, 302) or Aryana. According to this opinion, modern Afghanistan is the Ariana of the ancient Greeks. Strabo states that “Ariana is bounded on the east by the Indus, on the south by the Great Sea on the north by Parapamisus and succeeding chains of mountains as far as the Caspian Gates, on the west by the same limits by which the territory of the Parthians is separated from Media, and Karmania from Paratakana and Persia” (Bellew 1880: 3)3 (map 1). Map 1: The world according to Strabo (64/63 BC–after AD 21). Source: Butlin (1993: 11). 2 The name Abdali is used both for a tribe and a dynasty, coming from the same tribe. It is generally believed that Ahmad Khan (later Ahmad Shah) got the title of Dur-e Durran, a Farsi word, meaning Pearl of the Pearl from the same tribe during his rule. This title was shortened in usage to Durrani as Ahmad Shah Durrani and was used for his descendents, as well as, the Abdali tribe. Both Abdali and Durrani are interchangeably used in this text. 3 Bellew quotes Erastosthenes who in turn quotes Strabo (Bellew 1891: 3). 210 Essays and Articles These sources influenced many prominent Afghan authors to follow the same idea in their writings. According to these writers, Afghanistan existed as a state through the course of history. Especially in the seventh and eighth century, there was a strong and populous state e. g. the Bactrian State, (Ghubar 1968: 39, 40). According to this claim the long history of Afghanistan begins with Ariana from 1000 BC to the fifth century, followed by Khorasan to the late 19th century and finally Afghanistan from 1880 until now. Whatever happened in between is considered as foreign invasion and occupation. More important, Afghanistan used to have natural borders, e. g., to the North with Amu Darya, to the South with the Arabian Sea, to the East with the River Sindh and to the West with the Iranian desert. The Aryans settled in Balkh about 4000 BC and established the first Afghan state. The Abdali dynasty in 1747 were the last rulers who could extend the territory of Afghanistan to its natural boundaries (Ghubar 1968: 6–9, Kohzad 2008: 32–33). The discussions about Ariana still exist among Afghans who believe their land historically existed as Ariana from 1600 BC to 700. Not only the land but also the people existed as a nation (Arian) with one religion (Zoroastarianism) and finally one language (Avestan).4 The idea of Ariana and Arian was and still is found attractive in neigh- 4 The traces of the Zoroastrian culture are still visible in a mixed form with the Islamic culture in Afghanistan. For example, the Islamic calendar that is based on the Lunar Year and the migration of the Prophet Mohammad from Mecca to Medina has been changed in Afghanistan (also in Iran) to the Solar Year system modifying both the Islamic calendar and the Zoroastarian one. Thus, each year begins on the first day of spring or the 21st of March. The names of the months, unlike the Islamic calendar, are Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo, Virgo, Libra, Scorpio, Sagitarius, Capricorn, Aquarios and Pisces. The special celebration of the first day of the new years (Naw Roz or new day) is a mixture with Islamic tradition, e. g., setting the flags in the holy shrine, believed to belong to Ali the fourth caliphate of Islam in Mazar-e-Sharif and some other holy places in Kabul, which are linked with the fourth caliphate: cooking special dishes (Samanak and Haft Mewa), going outdoors – walking on the grass, for picnics, visiting the cemeteries, etc.! The same customs, as mentioned, are also very common in Iran and many parts of Central Asia. In Afghanistan, these customs are very common in northern, western, and central parts of the country, including the capital and its surroundings. In the South, these customs are not very widespread due to the exist- 211 Sardar Kohistani – Geopolitical Position of Afghanistan boring Iran, which changed its old name Persia (Parsua or Fars) to Iran in 1935 and their nationality from Persian to Iranian. The same customs, as mentioned, are also strongly common in Iran and Tajikistan. However, Dupree disagrees with both the non-Afghan and the Afghan scholars. While criticizing the Western authors, he calls the imitation by the Afghan authors as “sheep-like following of western authors” (Dupree 2005: xix). It is hard to prove these claims, particularly tracing and linking the history of today’s Afghanistan with Ariana and Khorasan. These two names identify a geographical location, they do not refer to any state as a political unit. Particularly, the word Khorasan is used to refer to the territories where the sun rises, or East of Persia, a name commonly used by the Arabs following their invasions. From this period onward mostly the name of a ruler, the name of a clan and the place where a capital city was located were used to indicate the dominant ruler and his territory. No one has ever mentioned the ‘state of Khorasan’. Instead, there is a mentioning of Safaarids, Tahirids, Ghaznavids, Ghorids, Moguls, Afsharids, Hotakis, Abdalis, Sadozais, Mohammadzais and their political systems as empires, dynasties, emirates or kingdoms. Today, what is seen as the diverse social structure of Afghanistan is inherited from its past, which is called a “crowded past” (Fletcher 1966: V). History has provided Afghanistan with a mosaic of people, traditions, religions and languages. What is known today as Afghanistan became part of Achaemenid Empire from 545 BC until 333 BC (Tytler 1967: 17, Ghubar 1968: 39). In 330 B.C., Alexander the Great invaded this country and merged it with his Empire. Then, for many centuries Giu-Shangs (Kushans), Sassanids, Ephtalites, Scythians, and Parthians ruled and fought each other in this region. The statues of Buddha in Bamiyan, the art of Graeco-Bactrians or Graeco-Buddhist are among the visible traces of those eras. However, these empires left no visible traces among the ethnic groups of Afghanistan, but some ence of tribal traditions. That is why the Taliban, coming from the South, banned all of these customs and formalized the year on the basis of the Islamic calendar. 212 Essays and Articles believe they are the progenitor of the people in Afghanistan (Fletcher 1966: 32–33). The Sassanid Empire came to an end as a result of the Arab invasion in 642, when all Eastern Iran fell into the Arabs hands. The Arabs and the independent dynasties loyal to them e. g., the Tahirids, Samanids and Safaarids (Dupree 2005: 313) introduced the religion of Islam and Arabic language into the entire region- and added a new culture to the already mixed culture of the Zoroastrian, Greek and Buddhist culture. Some revolutionary figures revolted against the Arab occupations, like Abu Muslim Khorasani and Yaqub Lais Safaari, are considered to be historical champions against the Arab invasion. They are also among the first who used Farsi as a proper language, but with Arabic letters. They promoted its use parallel to the Arabic that had been established as the Lingua Franca after the Arab invasion. The Role of Mosques as Socio-Religious Institutions and Their Influence on Political Power After the Arab invasion and the conversion of the people in Afghanistan, Islam heavily influenced all governing institutions. The Shariah (Kitab, Sunna and Ijtihad)5 was seen as the constitution for the ruling system. The mosques were the centres of religion and education. At the same time, the legitimacy of every ruler had to be verified through the mosque, which had to accept these rulers as the First Leader (Caliphate or Uol-ul-Amr). This leader was considered to be as the substitute for the prophet Mohammad (Ibn Khaldun after Rosenthal 2005: 170). The institutions that fell under the government of the caliphate, which carried a royal authority, had many functions such as leader- 5 By Kitab the Holy Quran is meant, the Sunna are the speeches (Hadith) and behaviour of the Prophet Mohammad, while Ijtihad means a decision made by a group of Islamic scholars and experts (Ulama) on special cases that can not be directly extracted from Kitab or Hadith. What these Ulama say is called as religious Fatwa (pl. Fatawa) for special political purposes; it is sometimes even issued against rulers, who are considered to be illegitimate. 213 Sardar Kohistani – Geopolitical Position of Afghanistan ship of the prayer, the office of Mufti, the office of the judge, the police, market supervision and the mint (figure 1). Among them the leadership of the prayer was and in some countries still is, regarded more highly than the royal authority (Ibn Khaldun after Rosenthal 2005: 170–171) because the declaration of leadership of the leader with his name that had to be announced in the Friday sermon (Khotbah Jumah). The people were aware of the declaration through participation in the mosque and listening to the speech had to accept his leadership. Figure 1: Tradtional Durbar structure. Source: Draft Kohistani (2009). This process of legitimizing of the ruling system through the mosque was practised during the era of the four caliphates 632–661 (Abu Bakr, Omar, Othman and Ali). During the Umayyad caliphates, 661–750, especially at the beginning, this process of legitimacy was practised. In that period, when the territories of western Afghanistan were conquered, Baghdad played the central role for all the territories occupied by Muslims. The territory was divided into many provinces (Welayat) (IBN KHALDUN after ROSENTHAL 2005: 170-171) because the declaration of leadership of t e leader with his name that had to be announced in the Friday sermon (Khotbah Jumah). The people w re awar of the declaration through articipation in the mosque and list ning to the speech had to accept his leaders ip. Figure 1: Tradtional Durbar structure. Source: Draft KOHISTANI (2009). This process of legitimizing of the ruling system through the mosque was practised during the era of the four caliphates 632-661 (Abu Bakr, Omar, Othman and Ali). During the Umayyad caliphates, 661-750, especially at the beginning, this process of legitimacy was practised. In that period, when the territories of western Afghanistan were conquered, Baghdad played the central role for all the territories occupied by Muslims. The territory was divided into many provinces (Welayat) run by different governors (Wali, Hakem) who were loyal to the caliphates and sent taxes, tributes (Maliyaat wa Ghanayem) and income directly to Baghdad. The orders (Amr wa Farman) issued by the caliphates were sent to all governors and were announced publicly through the mosques. However, in later period of the Umayyad, the process Civil Military Judiciary Durbar Wazir (Minister) Imam/Mullah Mosque Madrasa Tullab (Students) Judge Sharia Law Commander Officers Cavalry Slaves Infantry FinanceAdmin. Barid (Post) Tax Secret Service 214 Essays and Articles run by different governors (Wali, Hakem) who were loyal to the caliphates and sent taxes, tributes (Maliyaat wa Ghanayem) and income directly to Baghdad. The orders (Amr wa Farman) issued by the caliphates were sent to all governors and were announced publicly through the mosques. However, in later period of the Umayyad, the process of legitimizing leadership remained a theory, while in practice this process was as an instrument for Arab supremacy. This supremacy was rejected by the non-Arab Abu Muslim, known as Khurasani, who revolted against the Umayyad Caliphate and ended their rule by replacing them with the Abbasids. The Abbasids, coming to power in 750, killed Khurasani and ruled like the Umayyads, following the policy of Arab supremacy. But the revolts were continued by Yaqoub Lais Safaari from Sistan, South of Herat, who put an end to the direct Arab rule and established his own dynasty that is known as the Safaarid Dynasty (Ghubar 1968: 90–100). However, in terms of leadership of prayer he had to follow the Baghdad caliphate, just like the first leader. Later, the rise of nationalism in the non-Arab world, especially in Persia and its Eastern plateau, brought many dynasties and sultanates of its own which were semi-independent or independent of the Baghdad caliphates. By 1200, the Arabs’ control ended in Central Asia (Dupree 2005: 315). The role of mosques remained as the highest central institution in legitimising the leadership and the ruling system remained. Among the big independent sultanates or dynasties were the Ghaznavids, Ghorids and Timorids, which all practised the Sunni school of Islam. However, the Safavids were the first big Shii dynasty established in Persia and ended the direct land contact between the Sunnis of Central and South Asia with Baghdad. The Ghaznavid Empire (962–1148) is highly important because for the first time the capital of an Islamic empire was based in Ghazni (Afghanistan). During this period, Islam was introduced in India and the Islamic and Indian cultures were mixed. This was a brilliant period for cultural and scientific development. Ghazni, the capital, was filled 215 Sardar Kohistani – Geopolitical Position of Afghanistan with men of great learning: among these 900 scholars were the scientist-historian Al-Biruni, the poet Firdausi, and the historian Al-Utabi (Dupree 2005: 314). Thus, Ghazni was called the Hazar Shahr-e Elm or the thousand city of knowledge (Panjshiri 1986). Much of the governmental system is indebted to this period since military, judiciary and civil affairs were the three basic parts of the Empire. Still, this system was inherited from the earlier Islamic period, with some improvements that had been made, as previously mentioned. The law was based on the Islamic Shariah sources (e. g., Kitab, Sunnah and Ijtihad) (figure 1). The Ghorids (1148–1214), a local governor of Ghanznavid, revolted against its neighboring dynasties and was able to defeat them and bring them under their control. The ruling system of the Ghorids was similar to that of the Ghaznavids (Ghubar 1968: 135). Khawrezm Shah (1214–1219) was among the last rulers in the region until the Mongols defeated him. After that, Timurids (1370–1506) ruled the region. Then, for two hundred years, the territory of today’s Afghanistan was ruled by three dynasties, namely the Uzbek Shaibanids in the North, the Persian Safavids in the West, and the rest was governed by the Moguls who ruled in India, too, (map 2). Among them the Safavids (1501–1722) were the first Shii dynasty in the region that proclaimed the Shii as the official religion and forced people to convert to Shiism not only in Persia, but also in Southern Afghanistan (Kandahar). This policy turned the Sunni Muslims, especially, the traditional Pastuns, to revolt against the Safavid governor Gorgin Khan in Kandahar for the first time in the history. Mirwais, the head of Ghilzai tribe, killed Gorgin Khan and declared himself independent. In this rebellion he received support from Awrangzeb, the Mogul Empire (1658–1707) as well as from other Sunni religious leaders (Yarshater 2006: 236–237) in Kandahar. He received major support from the religious elite because prior to his rebellion he went to Mecca, from where he brought a Fatwa6 against Shii domination in 6 Fatwa is an Islamic religious declaration issued by religious experts (Ulama) on important issues. 216 Essays and Articles Kandahar (Farhang 1993: 77). In 1722, his son Mahmud ended the rule of Safivids in Persia and conquered most of its territory, including Esfahan, the capital, where he ruled for fourteen years (Yarshater 2006: 236–237). Map 2: Safavid, Mogul and Shaibanid empires 1520–1700. However, this brief and unstable rule came to an end when Nadir Shah (1728–1747) emerged as a powerful force and brought Persia under his control. He held a Jirga to which he invited all political leaders, who, elected him as king. Following his election, he discussed his plans with the political leaders. His major plan was to unify Persia and Afghan- 217 Sardar Kohistani – Geopolitical Position of Afghanistan istan. The only obstacle in achieving that goal was the Shii school of Islam in Iran, which he as Sunni strongly opposed. So, he proclaimed the Sunni religion, again, as the only official religion in his dynasty (Ghubar 1968: 350). His policy enabled him to subdue the traditional Pashtun tribes (mainly the Abdali and Ghilzai), who later on served as a siginificant part of his troops. Nadir Shah’s assassination in 1747 provided the opportunity for the Abdali and Ghilzai to organize their own rule in their territory. The time from the Arab invasion until the rise of the Abdalis is considered as an Islamic period. It is believed that the country was called ‘Khorasan’ and the people, as one nation, were referred to as ‘Khorasani’, and that one language Farsi, established itself as lingua franca (Ghubar 1968: 9, 535, Farhang: 31–39). However, the history of Afghanistan until the rise of Abdalis is interspersed with constant invasions by different empires and rulers, ranging from the Greek to the Chinese, from Indians to Arabs, Turks, Persians and Moguls. These different cultures, religions, languages and traditions were mixed with each other. Within these intermixing cultures, Islam remained as the dominant religion and the Farsi language survived all invasions and remained as the lingua franca. As a result, of so many invasions in the course of history some believe that there are at least thirty distinct languages native to Afghanistan, which are spread among four language families, although the Iranian tongues are by far the most widely known (Newell 1972:13–14, Rahmati 1986: 252). History also left a mosaic of people composed of different ethnic groups in the country. Among these ethnic groups the Pashtuns under the leadership of Abdali tribe gained the power through a tribal confederation in the mid of the 18th century, being politically the dominant element until the mid of the 20th century. 218 Essays and Articles The Emergence of Dynasties and the Role of Tribal Systems: From Unification of Tribes to the Beginning of Their Rivalry The tribal system is mainly a traditional institution, which is believed to perform tasks of political interest, mediation, dispute resolution, and military organization (Hager 1983: 83). In the tribal system the kinship is an important factor. Some believes that kinship was an essential means to mobilize political or economic resources for all the people in Afghanistan (Rubin 2002:22). In fact, in the modern history among the Pashtun ruling family tribalism proves that on a very large scale. The tribal ruling system was based on kinship, e. g., converting power from the father to the son and to the grandson in the same clan. The big ruling families employed their sons as governors after the death of the fathers of the ruling families. Later, the sons of these governors challenged each other in a form of cousin-rivalry or tarburwali (Tapper 1983: 49) and fought to gain the political power. This cousin-rivalry during the reign of both the Sadozai and Mohammadzai clans was the main factor fragmenting the ruling system from the rise in 1747 till its last fall in 1973 (figure 2). In 1747, just after the assassination of Nadir Shah Afshar, the elite guard of the Shah consisted of a body of horsemen from the Abdali (Fletcher 1966:41) and the Ghilzai tribes, who had got the opportunity to establish their own political entity. Their leaders were Noor Mohammad Khan from the Ghilzai and Ahmad Khan of the Abdali, the two rival tribes. The first tribe had 4,000 Ghilzais and the latter tribe had 12,000 Abdalis and Uzbeks under their commands (Ghubar 1968:354). These tribal leaders serving Nadir Shah increased their power and influence in the dynasty as a result of loyalty to the King. They learned much about the ruling system of their time from the Persians. During Nadir Shah’s invasion of India they learned about the wealth of India and the weaknesses of the Mogul Empire. This invasion opened their eyes for a possible future invasion there. Furthermore, their own 219 Sardar Kohistani – Geopolitical Position of Afghanistan troops together with the scattered Pashtun tribes from Kandahar to India, were available instruments for achieving these goals. These factors were the basis on which Ahmad Khan Abdali (1747– 1973) established the Abdali dynasty in Afghanistan. Though, there are different opinions on how he became king. Afghan authors often quote that the 25-year-old Ahmad Khan invited different tribes and held a Jirga in Kandahar to discuss the election of a king. The Jirga could not come to a conclusion due to tribal competition. It was Mohammad Sabir Shah Kabuli, a Sufi, who ended the nine days of unsuccessful discussion by saying: “God has elected Ahmad as the king and all should accept his rule” (Ghubar 1968: 355). However, it is also believed that Ahmad Shah had brought a lot of treasures, which he had gained after the death of Nadir Shah, that helped him to bribe the tribal chiefs to elect him as king (Atayee 2002:39). Nevertheless, others reject the idea that Ahmad Shan set up a tribal Jirga, saying he proclaimed himself to be paramount chieftain or king soon after he got the news of Nadir Shah’s death and headed to Kandahar (Dupree 2005: 332, Farhang 1993:117). At the same time Noor Mohammad Khan’s attempt from the Ghilzai tribe to kill Ahmad Shah failed, which costed his life, also raises doubts about the event of the Jirga and supports the theory competition between two Ghilzai and Abdali tribal leaders to become king (Farhang 1993: 129, 130). 220 Essays and Articles Figure 2: The Abdali (Durrani) Dynasty (1747 – 1978). Source: Tytler 1967: 346, Ghubar (1968: 379, 391, 393, 401, 509, 517, 589, 608, 615), Dupree (2005: 366–367) and Ewans (2002: 300). Thus, the rise of Abdalis under Ahmad Khan, who was from the same tribe, is believed to be the emergence of Afghanistan as a political entity. Ahmad Khan Abdali from this time became Ahmad Shah. The title of Dur-e Durran (Pearl of Pearl) was given to him by Sabir Shah Kabuli. Therefore, both his dynasty and his tribe from this period onward igure 2: The Abdali (Durrani) Dynasty (1747 – 1978). Source: TYTLER 1967: 346, GHUBAR (1968: 379, 391, 393, 401, 509, 517, 589, 608, 615), DUPREE (2005: 366-367) and EWANS (2002: 300). Thus, the rise of Abdalis under Ahmad Khan, who was from the same tribe, is believed to be the emergence of Afghanistan as a political entity. Ahmad Khan Abdali from this time became Ahmad Shah. The title of Dur-e Durran (Pearl of Pearl) was given to him by Sabir Shah Kabuli. Therefore, both his dynasty and his tribe from this period onward are called Popalzai Timur Shah (1772-93) Mohammadzai Ahmad Shah Abdali (1747-72) Dost Mohammad Khan * (1829-39: 1842-63) Rahm Dil Khan Barakzai Sadozai Zaman Shah (1793-1801) Sultan M. KhanShah Mamoud (1801-1804: 1804-1818) Shah Shuja (1804-1809: 1839-42) Prince Kamran Painda Khan Fateh Khan Habibullah (1901-19) Shir Ali Khan (1863-66:1869-79) Yahya KhanM.Afzal Khan (1866-67) M. Yusuf Khan Abdurrahman (1880-1901) M. Yaqub Khan (1879) M.Azam Khan (1867-69) Mahmud Tarzi Enayatullah (1929) 6 days Amanullah (1919-29) Ghulam M.Tarzi Queen Soraya Shah Mahmud Khan Shah Wali Khan M. Aziz KhanM.Hashim Khan Nadir Khan (1929-33) Zahir Shah (1933-73) M. Naim Khan Daoud Khan (1973-78) The Abdalis / Durranis Civil War intensifies 1818-1834 221 Sardar Kohistani – Geopolitical Position of Afghanistan are called Durrani. He established Kandahar as his capital and immediately started expanding his territory. This success was mostly due to the fact that there was no major power in the territories he conquered. Moreover, his reputation as commander under Nadir Shah helped him to gain territories without any major resistance. In other words, he inherited Eastern part of the territories, which once had been conquered by Nadir Shah while the Western part came under the control of independent rulers who mostly practised the Shiite confession. These independent rulers that ended with the Qajar Dynasty (1785– 1925) were a political obstacle for communication between Ottoman Empire (Newell 1972:39) and other Sunni rulers in the East, Central and South Asia. The Ottoman Empire possessed the leadership of prayers and the Ottoman rulers were regarded as the caliphate. This was important for the legitimacy of all Sunni Muslims rulers to follow the Ottoman caliphate. Thus, unlike in Nadir Shah’s period, Afghanistan together with other Muslim lands in Central Asia and South Asia, had become religiously isolated from the Ottoman Empire and the Middle East. With Ahmad Shah’s reign, the scattered tribes of Pashtuns from Kandahar to India for the first time came under the single rule of a man from their own ethnic group. However, this lasted for only a short period, and he was not successful in maintaining stability in these territories. Furthermore, in his 25 years of rule he did nothing for the development of culture, modernization and economic development. Famous cities like Balkh, Herat and Ghazni declined and lost their importance to the growing city of Kandahar as the capital of the dynasty. The economy of the dynasty was mostly dependent on revenue from the fertile districts of the Eastern frontier (Gopalakrishanan 1982: 52), mainly in Punjab. The dynasty, from its beginning on, was instable and insecure. With its core in Kandahar, the Abdali dynasty was repeatedly challenged mainly in Panjab and Neshapur which made it difficult to sustain its control over all the large territories it conquered earlier (map 3). 222 Essays and Articles In 1761 Ahmad Shah invaded India and defeated Marathas in India, losing thousands of his troops. This was the biggest mistake he made, because after the defeat of the Marathas he returned without ruling their territories. With the removal of Marathas from power he made it easier for the British to become the paramount power in India. In other words Ahmad Shah inadvertently aided the penetration of the British toward the Northwest of India (Dupree 2005: 338) or today’s border of Afghanistan to Pakistan. Finally, the power vacuum in India and the family and tribal fighting within the dynasty all paved the way for the British to succeed. Map 3: The Abdali dynasty 1747–1793. Ahmad Shah was a good warrior, but not a good governor or administrator. He conquered a large territory over which it was difficult for him to maintain a sustainable rule. Until his death he was strug- 223 Sardar Kohistani – Geopolitical Position of Afghanistan gling to bring peace and calm down the revolts in different parts. He employed his seven sons as governors who competed over the political power after his death (Farhang 1993:154, 159,180). Among them, Timor Shah (1773–1793) carried out efforts to overcome the challenges to his rule which were posed by tribal chiefs in Kandahar and by the growing power of Sikhs in Panjab. In order to protect his rule from tribal competition, in 1773, he moved the capital from Kandahar to Kabul, a ‘Tajik centre’ (Tapper 1983:14), which was free from tribal dominance. Nevertheless, the challenges from the Pashtun tribes were not easy to overcome. In 1779, he survived a coup when he was in Bala Hisar, his winter palace in Peshawar.7 In this coup many tribes, claiming to want to greet the king entered the palace and suddenly attacked the guards. To prevent any fresh reinforcement from Kabul, the tribes closed the Khybar Pass. Nevertheless, the rebellion forces failed with 6000 losses in their attempts, as the royal guard fought successfully (Ghubar 1968: 374–375). Further, reasons for changing the capital from Kandahar to Kabul are due to the role of Kabul as culturally rich city, its magnificent cultural role as the home of the Ghaznavids and Moguls, the interest of the dynasty in India and finally the strategic location of Kabul. Establishing the capital in Kabul, Timor Shah became busy in a luxurious life. He left 32 sons after his death, a turbulent legacy for his successors. This led to continuous war between brothers over the succession of throne which caused dramatic problems for the country (Kohzad 2004: 303–304, Farhang 1993:170–173). From 1793 to the downfall of the ruling Sadozai in 1818, the Durrani dynasty was shaken by wars over succession. During the reign of Zaman Shah (1793– 1801), Shah Mahmoud (1801–1804 and 1809–1818) and Shah Shuja (1804–1809), the outlying regions became independent of Kabul. Every prince proclaimed himself as king. This situation is often referred to as Muluk-ut-Tawayefi (tribal kingdoms) which dominated the pol- 7 Not to be confused with Bala Hisar in Kabul. Beside these two there is also another in Ghazni, Bala Hisar Ghazni. 224 Essays and Articles itics of the country until the late 19th century. At the same time it provided an opportunity for foreign invasions, interventions and the politics of divide et impera. During Zaman Shah’s reign, a group of Napoleon’s delegates visited Kabul. The aim of this mission was to implement Napoleon’s plan already made with Alexander I, the Russian Emperor. According to this plan, 70,000 joint Russian and French troops would attack British India via Afghanistan. They already signed a treaty for the same purpose with Iran in Finkenstein in 1807. Zaman Shah, having 150,000 troops, rejected the proposal of Napoleon’s delegates and said that he was willing to free India from the British without receiving help from Christian powers (Ghubar 1968: 382). 8 However, he did use these troops by tribal fightings rather than in the unification of the country or in liberating India. From 1747 until 1903, the country had no famous modern schools or traditional Madrasa. The famous cities of Balkh, Herat, Ghazni and Kabul, which historically had reputation for culture were in decline. The fighting brought chaos which further isolated the country from Madrasas in Central Asia. Bukhara had 366 colleges (Madrasas) each of which had 70–80 students, many of them came from neighbouring countries (Olesen 1995:44). Thus, the reluctance of the ruling elites towards the importance of education was the darkest era of the country. In addition, from 1860 onward the Russian occupation of Central Asia cut off Afghanistan from it (Central Asia) completely. From 1801 onward, the fighting between the two clans of the Sadozai and Mohmmadzai continued. As a result the Abdali dynasty collapsed and its territory was divided as ‘heired property’ among the Khans of both clans (Habibi 1993:146, Farhang 1993:223). By 1830, the territory was no more a unified land but a group of independent Khanates of which the most important were Kabul, Kandahar, and Herat (Habberton 1937: 11). This situation helped the British and 8 Ghubar gives no further detail about the number or the name of French delegates. He also mentions no source for his claim. 225 Sardar Kohistani – Geopolitical Position of Afghanistan the Sikh to gain more territory. The conflict mainly continued for the control of Kabul, Kandahar, Herat, and Peshawar. Dost Mohammad (1834–1839 and 1843–1863)9 from the Mohammadzai clan gained the control of Kabul. Peshawar came under the control of the Sikh, while Shah Shuja, with British aid, attacked Kandahar in an attempt to overthrow his rival Mohammadzai and claim the throne. At this time Iran found Afghanistan without any strong rulers and attacked Herat. Iran besieged the city, but failed to break through due to strong resistance from the population of the city. In order to consolidate and maintain order and peace in his territory, Dost Mohammad married daughters of the troublesome tribal or feudal chiefs who had influence in the community (Morgan 1981:24). Due to the lack of any other institution to legitimize power or gaining public support, this policy was successful and helped the Amir to move slowly for consolidation and unification of the country. At this time, Afghanistan was a zone where the territorial interests of Britain and Russia clashed with each other. The ‘Great Game’ for Central Asia was about to burst into open warfare: with India as the prize and Afghanistan as the playing ground (Tanner 2002:136) (map 4). The policy of unification by the Amir raised fear among the British, because such a consolidation method could encourage others in their own territory. Thus, they preferred a policy of divide et impera toward the Afghan tribes as a counter policy. Later, the British were further provoked by the visit of a Russian mission from Kabul and decided to establish a puppet state in Afghanistan to act as a buffer and thus to create a balance of power (Morgan 1981: 26–27). 9 Authors have different opinions on the exact date of Dost Mohammad Khan’s reign. In English sources the following dates are mentioned: (Tytler 1967: 347) 1834–1863, (Gregorian 1969: XX) 1826–1838, 1842–1863; (Dupree 2005: 366– 367) 1826–1839, 1843–1863, (Noelle Karimi 1997:1) 1826–1863, Ewan (1819– 1839, 1842–1863). While Afghan sources, on the other hand, mention: Ghubar (1834–1839, 1843–1863), FARHANG (1836–1839, 1843–1862). I prefer, Ghubar which seems most accurate. 226 Essays and Articles Map 4: The Great Game: Russian and British expansion in Central and South Asia. According to the British policy, Shah Shoja (Sadozai) was a good replacement for Dost Mohammad (Mohammadzai), because Shah Shoja accepted being a puppet in the hand of the British, and he was the rival enemy of Dost. Nonetheless, it was unacceptable for the Afghans, as Muslims, to have a ruler who was enthroned by foreigners. Shah Shuja was the first Afghan ruler who was installed by the British. This caused the first Anglo-Afghan War (1939–1942), which is considered to be the worst disaster in the history of the British army (Morgan 1981:30). During the war, Dost Mohammad escaped first with his family to Bukhara. Later when the people were fighting against the British, 227 Sardar Kohistani – Geopolitical Position of Afghanistan he suddenly had surrendered himself to the British who sent them to India, into exile. He was not sure that the people of Afghanistan would succeed. The people, without him, defeated the British and opened the possibility of establishing a government. However, despite their success in the war, the Afghan people failed to determine their own future through establishing a government. Although there were many popular figures among them, but they could not choose one as their leader. The main reason was that, as the traditional ruling elite used to be from the Durrani tribe, therefore they were looking for someone from the same ruling elite. That is why they asked the British for the immediate release and return of Dost Mohammad Khan from India. Although he escaped and left his people during the war by surrendering himself to the British authorities in Kabul, he was still regarded as leader or Amir. The people demanded the release of Dost Mohammad Khan in exchange for the lives of 300 detained British citizens (Ghubar 1968: 542). As a consequence, he found a second chance to rule from 1842–63. As the British also found it impossible to control the country directly, instead, they supported the Amir’s return. Returning from India, the Amir agreed to establish a British protectorate kingdom and accepted British supervision of his foreign policy. To prove his loyalty to the British he eliminated those who had revolted against the British occupation. In his second term he created no permanent administrative institution upon which the unity of the country could be maintained (Gopalakrishanan 1982: 53). He expanded his rule to what is the territory of today’s Afghanistan but this was not sustainable. Like his predecessors he also had a big royal family, e. g., 24 wives and 52 children out of whom 29 were his sons (Reshtia 1999:215). He employed his sons as governors in his territory and following his death they fought for the control of power. Among them, Sher Ali Khan (1863–1878) proclaimed himself Amir while his brothers opposed him (Habibi 1967: 286–287). As a result, this opposition once again led to family-fighting, a term, which is known as Khana Jangi. 228 Essays and Articles The British also fuelled these fights due to the fact that they wanted a ruler in Kabul who would maintain no relation with the outside world, particularly with Russia. What the British wanted from their interference was that Afghanistan should remain exclusively within its sphere of influence and whoever ruled in Kabul should be under their supervision. In addition, they were concerned that any relation between Afghanistan and Russia would bring its influence into the country and could pave the way for further Russian advancement towards India. Sher Ali Khan defeated his rivals and brought the capital under his control. In terms of administration the country was divided into five provinces during in his period: Kabul, Kandahar, Turkistan, Herat and Farah (Rahmati 1986: 50). At this point, Russia sent its ambassador to Kabul and opened diplomatic relation with Afghanistan. This was considered a provocation and provided a reason for the British to invade Afghanistan again. The result was the second Anglo-Afghan War in 1878–1880. At the same time, after noticing the British invasion in Afghanistan, Amir Sher Ali Khan without using his 50,000 troops against foreign invasion, had escaped to Mazar-e-Sharif where he died (Reshtia 1999:323). Some say he died days after he went there to ask the Russians at the border, to whom he had signed a treaty of defence, to help him against the British (Dupree 2005: 408–9). The people of Afghanistan, more united than ever, fought against the British and defeated them. Although the British used their old policy of divide et impera to disunite the people by causing ethnic conflicts between Pastuns, Tajisk and Hazaras in Ghazni. This tactic was soon uncovered by the people as their enemy attempt (Ghubar 1968: 531). Unluckily, the people of Afghanistan who united to fight against a foreign enemy were unable to determine their own future. The lack of modern education, the dominance of tribal and religious elites, and the traditional and divine concept of the ruling system caused the people to follow the rule of kings or Amirs from a certain tribe for generations. Despite the fact, that rulers like Dost Mohammand Khan and Sher Ali Khan escaped or surrendered to foreign enemies of the coun- 229 Sardar Kohistani – Geopolitical Position of Afghanistan try. The ruling elite loyal to foreign powers, be they British, Russian or Persian, received financial and political backing. This enabled them to buy the support of dominant tribal and religious elites on which their rule depended. The people were not only largely deprived of receiving basic services, but they also were tortured, killed and expelled from the country. Creation of Modern Afghanistan? At this time, Sher Ali Khan’s rival, his nephew Abdurrahman Khan (1880–1901) who was in exile in Russia, suddenly received permission to go back to his country. According to his own account, when he arrived in the North of Afghanistan those loyal to Sher Ali Khan joined him to fight against the British occupation. When he entered the Shamali plain (Panjshir, Parwan and Kapisa) just north of Kabul, a number of 300,000 people declared their support. Simultaneously, the mullahs called him Amir and gave him the title of the leadership of the prayer (Abdurrahman 1995: 220). Yet, the letter he sent to the British commander in Kabul indicates that his return and his rule were determined and accepted by the two colonial powers. This is further supported by the fact that he declined to wage war against the British occupation what was the case the people strongly demanded. Finally, according to his own version, he asked the British certain questions that were highly important for the future of Afghanistan as a state. He asked (Abdurrahman 1995: 220–221): • What is the limit of my territory? • Will Kandahar be included in it? • Will any English personnel (Nafar) remain in Kabul? • Does the English government expect me to eliminate any of its enemies? • What am I to do for the British? 230 Essays and Articles These questions reveal that he wanted to rule for the British who had also determined the limits of the territory he ruled, his expenditures (subsidies) and the policy he required (eliminating anti-British elements and sentiments). Therefore, Abdurrahman provided all criteria the British desperately needed. They signed a treaty –accepting Abdurrahman as Amir at Kabul – promised him arms and a subsidy along with support against external aggression (Morgan 1981:182). However, he was assigned as the ruler of Kabul and Turkistan in the North while his cousin Ayub Khan ruled in Kandahar and Herat. Ayub Khan was a veritable enemy of the British. He fought against the British forces and defeated them in Maiwand near Kandahar. Abdurrahman Khan, instead of helping his cousin in the war against foreign invaders, escorted the British Army leaving Kabul to safety (Abdurrahman 1995: 224). This raised the anger of the people as they noticed he was a British puppet. Hereafter, Amir Abdurrahman was frequently disturbed by rebellions, which he put down ruthlessly. From 1881– 96 the Amir commanded 17 military campaigns (Dupree 2005: 418– 19) through which he expanded his rule in the country and put off all the rebellions (map 5). 231 Sardar Kohistani – Geopolitical Position of Afghanistan Map 5: The reign of Amir Abdurrahman Khan, the ‘Iron Amir’ 1880–1901. In 1891, Hazara people revolted as a result of the Amir’s provocation, or, as often suggested, he had engineered the rebellion (Fletcher 1966: 147). The Hazara ethnic minority, mainly Shii, inhabited Hazarajat in central Afghanistan. In this war which lasted from 1891–93, beside the massacre, around 9,000 men and women were sold as slaves only in Kabul, while an unknown number of them were sold in other cities (Farhang 1993:392–396, Ghubar 1968: 665–669). In order to expand his rule, Amir built up an army of 88,400 troops which was the greatest permanent army of Afghanistan up to date. Abdurrahman established a military factory in Kabul and purchased some artillery weapons from Germany and France (Farhang 1993:422– 3). Receiving 2,000,000 Indian Rupees from the British as regular subsidies and assistance provided the necessary financial means for achieving this goal. This army enabled him to defeat his rival cousin Ayub 232 Essays and Articles Khan and expand his control to Kandahar and Herat. Amir Abdurrahman used religion as a powerful tool to implement his rule. The motivation behind Amir’s strategy in this fight was to make people busy among themselves so that they would forget the fact that he is a British puppet. Furthermore, he wanted the people to understand that he is loyal to Islam and especially to the Sunni confession. He wanted to show that he is in favour of the Sunnis and has declared Jihad against the Hazara people. He enjoyed the support of the Pashtun tribes who gained lands and properties of the Hazara as a result of the Amir’s permission. He demonstrated further this policy in 1896 when invading Kafiristan and forcing its non-Muslim inhabitants to convert to Islam. After the process of conversion to Islam the name Nooristan replaced the old name of Kafiristan. Another major policy of Abdurrahman was moving Pashtun tribes from the infertile South to the rich and fertile region of the North. With this policy he achieved at least two main goals: First, he broke the power of the Ghilzai who were traditionally the rival enemy of the Durranis. Secondly, by providing them with privileges, he won their loyalty to his rule. Moreover, with this policy he wanted to change the existing ethnolinguistic structure in the North to the benefit of the Pashtuns. While the Amir was busy with his internal affairs, foreign powers drew the boundaries of Afghanistan with or without his consent (Dupree 2005: 421). These boundaries are the achievement of his time which remained unchanged until now (map 6).10 One of these boundaries, which is still very controversial, is known as the Durand Line. The Amir agreed on its demarcation with the British on 12th November 1893 (Fletcher 1966:166). In terms of internal administration the country was divided into six provinces: Turkistan, Badakhshan, Herat, Kandahar, Farah and Kabul. Unlike his forefathers he appointed his loyal followers as governors and kept his sons in the capital. These governors contributed great- 10 Except the small border line of Sistan with Persia and a border of 92 km with China that were determined later, in the middle of the 20th century. 233 Sardar Kohistani – Geopolitical Position of Afghanistan ly to the breakdown of the tribal system (Dupree 2005: 420). Unifying the currency was another step he took, because before 1880 there were three different currencies common in Kabul, Kandahar and in Herat. The new currency was made of silver and by machine, it was marked with the title of the Amir Zia ul-Mellat-e wad-Deen (the light of the nation and religion), date and place. It was called Rupee with smaller units that were called as Qeran, and Tanga. Further smaller units of metal coins were one Shahi and two Shahi (Abdurrahman 1995: 343–344). Map 6: The delimitation of the boundaries of Afghanistan 1873 – 1964. To minimize the rule of religious elites and to unify their rules he issued a guidebook for judges and a booklet of rules with 69 items of guidance for the governors (Wali and Hakem) of the provinces (Farhang 1993:423) enforcing his dictums (Farmans). At the same time, he insti- 234 Essays and Articles tuted the Board of Treasury, the Board of Trade, the Bureau of Justice and the police (Kotwali), the Office of Records, the Office of Public Works, the Office of Post and Communication (Dupree 2005: 420), which were crucial initial steps. At the same time, Abdurrahman Khan was against modernization such as railways (Morgan 1981:191). Despite his claim to be in favour of religion even no Madrasa was established during his rule. But, to educate the members of royal family, there were a few English and Indian teachers. The rest of the population had to fulfil their educational needs in mosques, and were taught by mullahs. The curriculum consisted of religious subjects and Persian literature, mainly from famous poets (Maulana or Rumi, Hafiz and Saadi) and stories (religious and fiction). For advanced education the students (Talabas) had to go individually to India and attend theology in Dar-ul-Ulum Deoband the famous traditional Madrasa established in 1867 (Oleson 1996:45) without receiving any support from the Kingdom. Amir had an autocratic and centralized administration without any prime minister or ministers. He claimed his rule was divine, and he was sent by God to save the country from anarchy and foreign invasions. Whoever of the religious, tribal or feudal elites had opposed his divine power was brutally punished or executed (Farhang 1993: 417, 420). After his death there were 12,000 men and 8000 women in his prisons only in Kabul. Being so brutal in killing, he is known as the ‘Iron Amir’ in the English literature. 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The counter-view or counter-narrative of it should be that today’s academic world is dominated by a scientific historical-critical approach, which is rather based on myths to be believed in. Here the case of the so-called notion Middle-East – being not the proper term – is challenged. A vast region which is at the cross roads of the three continents of Asia itself where it belongs to, Europe and Africa. It is assumed that some terms in the modern and even postmodern age are hijacked for unknown reasons. Often human beings, places, rivers and mountains are denominated as it is wished by outsiders through a discourse of supremacy. In the case of the geography of Asia, Western or especially British cartography showed this vast continent in the time of colonization a space being lately for scientific exploration, linguistic definition and political domination. Asia and Europe To continue with an evident Eurocentrism, one should take into consideration that in the time of enlightenment the very idea and achievements were never applied beyond Western political borders. Thus, the emergence of nations and the nation-states are purely products of the Western civilization. To be concrete, this article’s focus is on the socalled Middle East. As soon as, one looks up in the old books of history the term Middle East was never written as such. In that sense, the continent of Asia never defined itself by its different regions or cardinal points. If Asians themselves denote their own region as the Middle East it would never thrive, given the fact to reflect critically about labels and their masterminds. The Middle East would mean from the Asia’s own geography’s viewpoint and as well standpoint only West- Asia. It is obvious that the place becomes to a specific space. Generally observed, Asia is home to the most spoken languages on planet earth, the most populated continent and the roots of many world religions with hundreds of millions of believers. Asia as a word is etymologically from West-Asia that is to state from the ancient empire of Assyria at the eastern Mediterranean coast. The 19th century German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer stated (in Essays and Aphorisms): “Every miserable fool who has nothing at all of which he can be proud, adopts as a last resource pride in the nation to which he belongs; he is ready and happy to defend all its faults and follies tooth and nail, thus reimbursing himself for his own inferiority.” Nation-states were in favor of the British colonial masters to control Asia as a vast continent and therefore to reduce its diversity in religions, confessions, languages, ethnicities, tribes, lands, rivers and mountains by use of rule: to political borders, a nation and a political elite. Power of People At present, many armed led wars and ethnic conflicts are associated somehow with religion: The religion of Islam. Islam is the major faith in West-Asia, and even in Central and parts of South-Asia, but not in North-Asia and East-Asia. Here is the point, when this bloodshed should not move. The still voiceless speaker of West-Asia should have the ethical and the necessary dignity to define its own region where he or she lives and has ancestors by their own. As a result, the desired change of the terminology should be triggered by the peo- 242 Postface ple and inhabitants of the region in only one special domain, which is at the beginning the language. In Persian, Arabic, Turkish, Kurdish, Hebrew, Assyrian, Armenian and many other languages the concerned people should employ in media, education system and everyday life the right term West-Asia instead of the outside and colonial term Middle-East. For instance, if an event is scheduled from China or Japan in Lebanon, so how would these two East-Asian countries call the concerned region? In the many unforeseen ups and downs in our period the globe by economical, technological and political modifications a continent like Asia is geographically connected to Europe – many times both continents are called together as “Euro-Asia”. As a “mind game” isn’t it maybe the right time for West-Asians to challenge the discourse of the ancient hegemon and to call Europe as “Near-West”? Cosmopolitan, Metropolitan and Individuality Such linguistic designations will alienate the ordinary readership of a written text or the observer of a map from people who are through the age of migration not to any further extent away from each other. In each and every metropolitan city around the world the dynamics of an individual or even collective identity and its daily challenges have another pace than in the recent past. It is very common that in one’s everyday life neighborhoods, friends, colleagues or love partners are highly internationalized, say from another part of the world. In former days, nation-states as the political principal decision-maker decided instead of their diverse adherents of a nation. This relationship from the hegemon within the state is in transformation, while emerging regions and cities are by many measures more attractive than the nation-state. Today, members of a nation transgress political borders to experience another life based on individual choices. For that reason, if someone migrates he or she used to learn about habits, languages, and mores and values of the host country. It is the contemporary human 243 Homayun Alam – Why Middle East and not West-Asia? being with access to technology, who pushes the first line and shows a smaller amount of interest in ancient myths of a nation and its narratives about the roots of its “imagined” belonging to the nation-state. Especially, in West-Asia its inhabitants experienced through the last ten decades only state repression. To be in the grip of a long term crisis, jeopardizes not only nation-states as the political entity, but has a negative impact on nations, cities, regions and continents. Conclusion To conclude, through history it is proven human beings are tired of ethnic, religious and state conflicts. Historiography is not merely transcribed by primordial victors, but confronted at present by the historical-critical approaches. 244 Postface 245 V. Contributors Safar Abdullah He is the director of the Iranology, University of Ablai Khan, and Department of the Kazakhstan Orientology Research Center in Almaty. His research interests are Greater Iran, Greater Khorasan, Persian historicity, poetry and language in the Iranian Cultural Sphere, Rudaki and transnationality in modern age. Ahmad Karimi-Hakkak For 19 years Ahmad Karimi-Hakkak was professor of Persian language and literature and Iranian culture and civilization at the University of Washington. He has studied in Iran and the United States, receiving his Ph.D. in comparative literature from Rutgers University in 1979, and has taught English and comparative literature and translation studies, as well as classical and modern Persian literature at the University of Tehran, Rutgers University, Columbia University, and the University of Texas. Professor Karimi-Hakkak is the author of 19 books and over 100 major scholarly articles. He has contributed articles on Iran and Persian literature to many reference works, including The Encyclopedia Britannica, The Encyclopaedia Iranica, and The Encyclopedia of Translation Studies. His works have been translated into French, Dutch, Spanish, Russian, Greek, Arabic, Japanese, and Persian. He has won numerous awards and honors, and has served as president of the International Society for Iranian Studies and several other professional academic organizations. Philipp Gerrit Kreyenbroek Professor and Director of Iranian Studies Georg-August University of Göttingen for the last 21 years (1996–2017). His research topics are Zoroastrianism, Yezidism, and Minority Religions among the Kurds, Oral Literature and Culture, Ancient Iranian Literature, Memory in Iranian Cultures. Prior at his position in Göttingen, he was a lecturer and senior lecturer in Utrecht and London. He took his PhD in the year of 1982 from the University of Leiden in the Nethederlands. 247 Ali M. Ansari He is the Professor in Modern History with reference to the Middle East at the University of St Andrews in Scotland, where he is also the founding director of the Institute for Iranian Studies. His research areas are Development of the Iranian state, Ideology, myth and nation building, Social and Intellectual history, Iran and the West. Ansari was educated at Col. Brown Cambridge School Dehara Dun, University College London (BA), King’s College London (MA), and obtained his PhD from the University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS). In March 2016 Ansari was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, Scotland’s National Academy for science and letters. Bert Fragner Professor Bert Fragner studied orientalist subjects in Islamic Studies, Turkology, Arabic and Iranian Studies as well as Ethnology and Slavic Studies at the University of Vienna. He took his Habilitation at the University of Freiburg in Germany in Islamic Studies. He hold professorships at the German universities of Freiburg, Berlin and most recently at the Chair for Iranian Studies in Bamberg. From 2003 until his retirement in 2010, Bert Fragner was the director of the Institute for Iranian Studies at the Austrian Academy of Sciences. His research areas are cultural, economic and social history of Iran, Afghanistan, Islamic India and Central Asia from the late middle Ages to the 20th century, Iranian-Turkish symbiosis in the Iranian-Central Asian region, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan and institutional history and diplomacy. Reza Deghati He has worked internationally for National Geographic Magazine. Several films about Reza’s work have been produced by National Geographic Television, most notably Frontline Diaries which won an Emmy Award in 2002. In 2003, Reza served as Creative Director for National Geographic’s most viewed documentary, Inside Mecca. As part of its Exceptional Journeys series, National Geographic released a docu- 248 Contributors mentary looking at Reza’s career as a photojournalist, with special features highlighting his extensive humanitarian work. Author of thirty books, and a recipient of many awards over the course of his career, Reza is a Fellow (2006–2012) and Explorer of the National Geographic Society since 2013, and a Senior Fellow of the Ashoka Foundation. His work has been recognized by World Press Photo; he has also received the Infinity Award from the International Center of Photography, the Lucy Award, an honorary medal from the University of Missouri and the honorary degree of Doctor Honoris Causa from the American University of Paris. France has also appointed him a Chevalier of the National Order of Merit. John Baily John Baily came into ethnomusicology from experimental psychology, with a doctorate on human spatial coordination and motor control from the University of Sussex. In 1973 he became a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow in the Department of Social Anthropology, Queen’s University of Belfast, and in collaboration with John Blacking conducted two years of ethnomusicological fieldwork in Afghanistan. In 1978 he was appointed Lecturer in Ethnomusicology at Queen’s. From 1984–86 he trained in anthropological film making at the National Film and Television School, and directed the award-winning film Amir: An Afghan refugee musician’s life in Peshawar, Pakistan. From 1988– 1990 he was Associate Professor in the Centre for Ethnomusicology, Columbia University, New York. He joined Goldsmiths in 1990, and is currently a retired Professor of Ethnomusicology and Head of the Afghanistan Music Unit. Baily’s principal research interests are: cognitive ethnomusicology, performance, ethnomusicological film, and music & migration. Richard Stoneman He has been an Honorary Fellow in the department since 1996. He spent thirty years as a classics editor, most of those years for Routledge; 249 Contributors since retiring from that role in 2006. The core of his research interests has been the continuity of the Greek world and Greek tradition up to the present day. He has written anthologies and travel guides reflecting this interest. Since the early 1980s the main focus of his research has been Alexander the Great, especially in later legend. Besides Latin and Greek, his languages include fluent German and adequate French, Italian and Modern Greek. He takes classes in Turkish and Persian. He is also Chairman of Westminster Classic Tours (www.westminsterclassictours.com), a company which runs gület tours to classical sites around the Turkish coast and Greek Islands. In 2009 he was appointed Consulting Editor in Classics to I.B. Tauris Publishers in London, and am actively seeking new authors for their classics programme, and for the series I edit, “Understanding Classics”. In 2010 he organised a conference at Exeter University, in conjunction with the Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies, on “The Alexander Romance in Persia and the East”. Richard Stoneman is the author of Xerxes: A Persian Life (Yale University Press 2015), in which the ideas expressed in this article are discussed more fully. Farid Zoland Farid Zoland is a transnational Persian songwriter and composer from Kabul and Tehran. Throughout his career he has collaborated with many musicians from Iran. He stems from a family of musicians. Hamid Reza Yousefi Hamid Reza Yousefi is a German-Iranian philosopher and cultural scientist. In 1997, Yousefi began studying philosophy, education and psychology at the University of Trier, which he completed in 2001 with the degree of a “Magister Artium”. In the same year he received a scholarship according to the Rhineland-Palatinate State Graduate Promotion Act for his dissertation entitled “The Concept of Tolerance in Gustav Mensching’s Thinking”. He received his PhD in 2004. In 2002, he initiated the scientific series “Building Blocks for Mensching Research”, 250 Contributors and in 2004 also the scientific series Intercultural Library. Thanks to a postdoctoral fellowship from the Fritz Thyssen Foundation, he was able to do his work Intercultural Thinking or Axis of Evil between 2004 and 2005: The Image of Islam in the Christian Occident working out. In 2010, he habilitated at the University of Koblenz-Landau with the work “Interculturality and History. Perspectives for a Global Philosophy”. Until 2014 he was a consultant at the Research Center for Intercultural Philosophy in Trier. Yousefi is the founding president of the Institute for the Promotion of Interculturality. He has been teaching at the University of Potsdam since 2016 and at the Saarland University since 2017. In 2017 he was appointed professor for intercultural philosophy and dialogue between religions. Nahid Morshedlou She is a research scholar at the Center of Persian and Central Asian Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India. She has completed her Masters from Iran. Her Master thesis was about Symbolism in Modern Persian Poems. She had completed her Master of Philosophy (M.phil) from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India and wrote her dissertation on Mehr-o-Mah of Jamali Dehlavi, a comparative study with “Mehr-o-Moshtari”. She received her PhD in the same Center and her Ph.D thesis is on: “Amir Khusrau, the Father of Indo-Persian Poetry in the Indian Subcontinent”. She has written many research articles: “Morality of King at Taarikh-e- Beihaghi”, “Seven Labours of Rostam”, “A Comparative Study between Hamlet and Sohrab”, “Persian Literary Trends in all over the World and a comparative study of Haft Wadi” and Mitra’s stages, which was published in Rahavard Literary Journal of US. Makhmalbaf Film House Makhmalbaf Film House, based in London, is an internationally known film company with over 40 feature, short and documentaries on its catalogue. The company’s film has been celebrated across the globe 251 Contributors and has received over 120 international awards from prestigious Film festivals in Cannes, Venice or Berlin. This company has the experience of making film in 10 different countries across Asia and Europe. Gabriele Dold-Ghadar She took her PhD from the Univeristy of Tuebingen. Dold-Ghadar’s work is devoted to this phenomenon, which until now has only been marginally perceived. With in-depth expertise, she traces, spilled or rediscovered sources and unearths some astonishing things. Her research areas are in cultural and art history, linguistics, business and trade, and military history. She finds so much evidence of Iranian provenance that parts of the history of al-Andalus will probably have to be reread. Sardar Kohistani He holds a PhD in Political Geography. His research areas are in Geography Development Research and in Geography Conflict Research. He is at present the Head of the Department at Kabul University. Beyond this, he is a member of Academic Council in the Faculty of Geoscience and member of Curriculum Committee at Kabul University. Homayun Alam He studied at the Goethe-University Frankfurt am Main, received his doctorate from the Georg-August-University Göttingen and did a postdoc at the Goethe-University Frankfurt am Main. He is interested in cities, identity, cultures, migration, glocalisation, languages, Persianate World, Iranian Cultural Sphere and transnationality. 252 Contributors

Abstract

This book is in fact an attempt to make the geographical borders between today's Iran, its neighbors and the Persian as one of the historical cultural achievements more precise. Since the aim is interdisciplinary the participation of international scholars - but also international artists - this book serves a new format, which stimulates the reader to further research, perhaps also instructs for innovation. If researchers of the field consisting of contemporary and ancient Iranian studies, music ethnologists, filmmakers, historians, poets/songwriters, philologists, Islamic studies scientists, sociologists and political scientists contribute, the result will be this book. With contributions by Safar Abdullah, Homayun Alam, Ali M. Ansari, John Baily, Reza Deghati, Bert Fragner, Gabriele Dold Ghadar, Ahmad Karimi Hakkak, Philipp Gerrit Kreyenbroek, Sardar Kohistani, Makhmalbaf Film House, Nahid Morshedlou, Richard Stoneman, Hamid Reza Yousefi and Farid Zoland.

Zusammenfassung

Dieses Buch ist tatsächlich der Versuch, die geographischen Grenzen zwischen dem heutigen Iran, seinen Nachbarn und dem Persischen als eines der historischen Kulturleistungen, zu präzisieren. Es möchte interdisziplinär mit der Beteiligung von internationalen Wissenschaftlern und Künstlern ein neues Format bedienen. Wenn Kenner des Forschungsfeldes bestehend aus Neu- und Alt-Iranisten, Musik-Ethnologen, Filmemachern, Historikern, Dichtern/Liedermachern, Philologen, Islamwissenschaftlern, Soziologen und Politikwissenschaftlern beitragen, dann wird das Ergebnis dieses vorliegende Buch. Der Herausgeber versucht ebenso mit einigen Beiträgen sich in Felder und Räume zu begeben, die zwar existieren mögen, aber niemals als Ganzes zusammengetragen wurden. Mit Beiträgen von Safar Abdullah, Homayun Alam, Ali M. Ansari, John Baily, Reza Deghati, Bert Fragner, Gabriele Dold Ghadar, Ahmad Karimi Hakkak, Philipp Gerrit Kreyenbroek, Sardar Kohistani, Makhmalbaf Film House, Nahid Morshedlou, Richard Stoneman, Hamid Reza Yousefi und Farid Zoland.

References

Abstract

This book is in fact an attempt to make the geographical borders between today's Iran, its neighbors and the Persian as one of the historical cultural achievements more precise. Since the aim is interdisciplinary the participation of international scholars - but also international artists - this book serves a new format, which stimulates the reader to further research, perhaps also instructs for innovation. If researchers of the field consisting of contemporary and ancient Iranian studies, music ethnologists, filmmakers, historians, poets/songwriters, philologists, Islamic studies scientists, sociologists and political scientists contribute, the result will be this book. With contributions by Safar Abdullah, Homayun Alam, Ali M. Ansari, John Baily, Reza Deghati, Bert Fragner, Gabriele Dold Ghadar, Ahmad Karimi Hakkak, Philipp Gerrit Kreyenbroek, Sardar Kohistani, Makhmalbaf Film House, Nahid Morshedlou, Richard Stoneman, Hamid Reza Yousefi and Farid Zoland.

Zusammenfassung

Dieses Buch ist tatsächlich der Versuch, die geographischen Grenzen zwischen dem heutigen Iran, seinen Nachbarn und dem Persischen als eines der historischen Kulturleistungen, zu präzisieren. Es möchte interdisziplinär mit der Beteiligung von internationalen Wissenschaftlern und Künstlern ein neues Format bedienen. Wenn Kenner des Forschungsfeldes bestehend aus Neu- und Alt-Iranisten, Musik-Ethnologen, Filmemachern, Historikern, Dichtern/Liedermachern, Philologen, Islamwissenschaftlern, Soziologen und Politikwissenschaftlern beitragen, dann wird das Ergebnis dieses vorliegende Buch. Der Herausgeber versucht ebenso mit einigen Beiträgen sich in Felder und Räume zu begeben, die zwar existieren mögen, aber niemals als Ganzes zusammengetragen wurden. Mit Beiträgen von Safar Abdullah, Homayun Alam, Ali M. Ansari, John Baily, Reza Deghati, Bert Fragner, Gabriele Dold Ghadar, Ahmad Karimi Hakkak, Philipp Gerrit Kreyenbroek, Sardar Kohistani, Makhmalbaf Film House, Nahid Morshedlou, Richard Stoneman, Hamid Reza Yousefi und Farid Zoland.