The Student's Committee
The British Institute of Persian Studies (BIPS) has recently founded a Student Members’ Committee (SMC) that will work to encourage both undergraduate and postgraduate students to take an interest in Persian / Iranian Studies and to ensure that BIPS remains relevant to those studying in our fields. The SMC will be seeking new student members to join in with BIPS activities, take advantage of BIPS research and travel grants, and give students an opportunity to collaborate and network with other students and scholars in the field through BIPS. The Committee will plan events for the student members and keep in touch with them through BIPS’s social media accounts as well as through our newsletter and other outreach emails.
In addition, the SMC is working with UK universities and student societies that are established and expanding their Iranian / Persian Studies programmes to speak to students about the benefits of joining BIPS and being more involved in the network of academics and professionals in Iranian / Persian Studies.
Officers and Members of the Student Members’ Committee
Anahita Alavi, Web/Media Officer
Taking a practical course in Persian miniature aroused my curiosity, and it channeled me towards focusing on Persian miniature for my undergraduate program. From that date on, I have spent my time on both practical and theoretical aspects of Persian painting and Islamic illumination. As an MA student of Art Studies at the university of Tehran, I carried out a dissertation in contemporary Iranian art and folk culture. Undertaking another MA at SOAS in History of Art and Architecture of Islamic Middle East broaden my horizon and paved the way to enhance my knowledge and examine the theoretical potentials of this field. My MA dissertation was a detailed study of the hell bodies in the Timurid Mirajnama by looking at the ideological and eschatological Islamic texts, and I was awarded a research trip grant of BIPS in order to travel to Iran and see the manuscripts including the paintings of the prophet’s Miraj. This subject was interesting enough to be extended as my PhD thesis for the near future.
Assisting Web Officer
Studying the History of Art at the Courtauld ignited my deep fascination and passion for the art and architecture of the Great Silk Roads, from the time of the Mongols to the Khanate of Khiva in the nineteenth century. I have a strong interest in promoting the art and architecture of the Persian world, and a personal energy towards making the material accessible to the public in a friendly and exciting way. During the summer of 2016, I was awarded a John Hayes travel grant to visit Uzbekistan, to see the monuments of the Timurids, Shaybanids and other dynasties of Persianate Central Asia, deepening further still my excitement for the subject. I am studying Persian, Russian, Arabic and Uzbek alongside my degree, for which my research and interests have spanned from Mughal and Rajput India, to Medieval Islam’s interaction with Byzantium, to Timurid Art and Culture in the fifteenth century, and have been especially focused on the Silk Road architecture of Turkestan, mainly within the region modern day Uzbekistan, centred around Bukhara, Samarqand, Shahr-i Sabz and Khiva. After finishing my degree, I hope to deepen my understanding of the languages I am learning, before applying for post-graduate study in the field of Persian art and architecture.