Institute of Ismaili Studies: 7 Countries, 34 Book Launch Events, 3,000 + attendees

“Launch events serve as vital bridges between pages and minds. ‘Academic’ words come alive; ideas take shape.”

– Dr Amyn Sajoo, Author of the Companion Series

 “Participating in the IIS book launches … has been a wonderfully enriching experience, in spiritual terms; and an unexpectedly rewarding one, in intellectual terms. … The very process of sharing with others the fruits of our research and reflections results in a deepening, for ourselves, of the knowledge being imparted.”

– Dr Reza Shah-Kazemi, Author of Spirituality and Universality in Islam

IIS book display at a launch in Lisbon- José Caria old web

In 2014, IIS scholars and publication authors participated in an array of book launch events and scholar visits.

The IIS’ Department of Communications & Development facilitated thirty-four events in Canada, India, Portugal, Tajikistan, United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom and the USA.

Over 3,000 individuals attended these events, including leading figures in academia, university students, dignitaries and members of the Ismaili community.

Lisbon, Portugal, was the setting for several other book launch events this year, including an event to commemorate the publication of A Modern History of the Ismailis, Fortresses of the Intellect: Essays in Honour of Dr Farhad Daftary and the Historical Dictionary of the Ismailis (by Dr Farhad Daftary) in Portuguese. The Institute currently has a roster of over 90 translated volumes published in French, Arabic, Persian, Urdu and Tajik.

A much-anticipated highlight of the season was the launch in May 2014 of the premier publications in the new Shi‘i Heritage series; A History of Shi‘i Islam and The Study of Shi‘i Islam, in London. The event, which was also replicated in Lisbon, featured the Managing Editors Dr Farhad Daftary and Dr Gurdofarid Miskinzoda speaking about the objectives and scope of this latest IIS offering.

In August 2014, events took place in Dushanbe, Khorog and the Rushan District, in Tajikistan. These book launches were held to commemorate a new publication entitled Russian Scholars on Ismailism, produced by the Central Asian Studies Unit (CASU), at the IIS.

In 2014, 17 book launch events were organised in the USA, with two IIS scholars, Dr Reza Shah-Kazemi and Dr Shainool Jiwa. The tours included outreach lectures and sessions with university students in Boston and Seattle.

“The book launch sessions have been very fulfilling for me as they have provided me an opportunity to interact with both academic audiences and non-academics of all persuasions, including Ismailis.

Sharing my research interests and findings with such a diverse range of people has enabled me to get a first-hand understanding of their viewpoints and concerns.

I have been reminded, in this way, of the importance of ensuring that our work at the IIS remains responsive to our key constituencies which includes non-academics within the Ismaili community.”

– Dr Shainool Jiwa, Author of Towards a Shi‘i Mediterranean Empire and The Founder of Cairo

Discover, Explore and Learn more by reading the complete story at The Institute Hosts Book Launch Events in Seven Countries

Authour – Publication – Venue

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