Constitutional Politics in Modern Iran: A Re-Examination and Implications for the Future

Event Date: 

Thursday, March 1, 2012 to Saturday, March 3, 2012

March 1-3, Loma Pelona Center

University of California, Santa Barbara

With a major contribution from the Semnani Family Foundation and additional support from the Mellichamp Fund, the Iranian Studies Initiative at University of California, Santa Barbara hosts this international conference to provide a fundamental assessment of Iran’s experience with constitutionalism. We hope this gathering of constitutional lawyers, academics, and journalists serves as a forum for in-depth, critical examination of the past and current Iranian constitutions, and also offers the opportunity to propose practical recommendations for the future. Presenters will examine the history of constitutional politics in Iran; frame key problems and constitutional issues from the last century; integrate fresh perspectives for addressing longstanding issues in Iran’s legal history; and identify and develop resources for a better understanding of constitutional issues. Speakers will examine the constitutional challenges of a transition to a more democratic mode of governance and propose recommendations that could meet the needs of the Iranian people in the 21st century.

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Janet Afary

Department of Religious Studies, UC Santa Barbara

Hamid Akbari

Northeastern Illinois University

Kazem Alamdari

Visiting Scholar, Department of Sociology, UCLA

Mehrdad Amanat

Independent Scholar

Kevin Anderson

Department of Sociology, University of California, Santa Barbara

Fakhreddin Azimi

Department of History, University of Connecticut

Sohrab Behdad

Department of Economics, Denison University

Houri Berberian

Department of History, California State University, Long Beach

Cyrus Bina

Department of Economics and Management, University of Minnesota (Morris Campus)

Farhad Cavard

École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris

Chahla Chafiq

Writer and researcher

Hiram Chodosh

S. J. Quinney College of Law, University of Utah

Stephanie Cronin

Faculty of Oriental Studies, University of Oxford

Manoutchehr M. Eskandari-Qajar

Department of Political Science and Economics, Santa Barbara City College

Shiva Falsafi

Department of Women’s Studies, University of California, Los Angeles

Mateo Farzaneh

Department of History, Northeastern Illinois University, Chicago

John Foran

Department of Sociology, University of California, Santa Barbara

Mehrangiz Kar

Brown University

Houshang Keshavarz Sadr

Social Science Researcher

Abdol-Karim Lahidji

Iranian League for Defense of Human Rights; International Federation for Human Rights

Ali-Akbar Mahdi

Professor Emeritus, Department of Sociology, Ohio Wesleyan University

Chibli Mallat

S. J. Quinney College of Law, University of Utah

Afshin Matin-Asgari

Department of History, California State University, Los Angeles

Majid Mohammadi

Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty

Dwight Reynolds

Department of Religious Studies, University of California, Santa Barbara

Amir Soltani

Journalist San Francisco Bay Area

Nayereh Tohidi

Department of Gender and Women’s Studies, California State University, Northridge