Call for Papers – “The Tudeh Party of Iran at 80: A Critical Re-Appraisal and Re Evaluation”

Andrew Eccles
Friday 9 October 2020

Organised by Leonard Michael and Siavush Randjbar-Daemi, School of History and Institute
of Iranian Studies, University of St Andrews.

To be held online week commencing 29 March 2021. 

The year 2021 marks the 80th anniversary of the establishment of the Tudeh (Masses) Party of  Iran, a political formation which has played an important role in shaping the modern and  contemporary history of the country. Throughout its existence, the Tudeh has deeply polarised  the Iranian political community and has caused a considerable amount of controversy. A  considerable number of the country’s leading political figures, intellectuals and statesmen have  at least briefly transited through its complex structures. The Tudeh is still considered by many  observers as Iran’s most significant and structured political party of the 20th Century. 

This conference seeks to explore the various dimensions of the Tudeh Party from its inception  in 1941 to the present era. It aspires to focus on both the party’s political evolution through  decades of upheaval in Iran and exile in Europe, as well as the impact of the Tudeh on the  Iranian arts, literature and cultural scenes. The conference is particularly keen to provide an  avenue for the discussion of new research on under-studied elements in the party’s history,  such as its attitudes towards gender and ethnic minority questions, the everyday activism of  lower ranking cadres and sympathisers both during the periods in which the party was able to  operate legally or overtly in the country and those during which it had to operate in clandestine manner and its relationship with other components the Iranian and international Left. The organisers are also keen to ensure a cross-generational presence and approach at this  conference.

The organisers intend to produce an edited volume which will include a number of the  conference’s submissions. Submissions in English are therefore preferred; however, the  organisers will also consider talks to be delivered in Persian. 

Due to the current COVID-19 related restrictions, the conference will be held entirely online,  with proceedings broadcast live and publicly via YouTube. The deadline for paper submissions  is Friday, December 4, 2020. Successful applicants will be notified by the middle of January. 

The organisers may be  contacted for any questions regarding the conference on iran@st-andrews.ac.uk

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