Centre for Persian and Iranian Studies

Research interests and research projects

The Rumi Studies Group at the Centre of Persian and Iranian Studies at the IAIS supports scholarship, publication and research into the philosophical poetics, mystical teachings and legacy of Mawlana (an honorific meaning ‘Our master’) Jalal al-Din Rumi (d. 1273) - arguably the most important Sufi poet in the Islamic world. The Rumi Studies Group also sponsors the publication of the Mawlana Rumi Review, edited by Dr. Leonard Lewisohn.

Please see more details for The Rumi Studies Group and The Mawlana Rumi Review, the new academic journal.

Professor Robert Gleave is director of the three year British Academy project Clerical Authority in Shiite Islam: Culture and Learning in Seminaries of Iraq and Iran. For details of the project, visit the website.

Dr. Leonard Lewisohn is Senior Lecturer in Persian and Iran Heritage Foundation Fellow in Classical Persian and Sufi Literature. He specialises in translation of Persian Sufi poetic and prose texts. Dr Lewisohn organised the Classical Persian Poetry and Poets: The Timurind and Turkmen periods workshop. The workshop focused on the life, works and thought of all major and some of the minor poets who flourished during in the late Mongol, Timurid and Turkmen periods.
During all of 2010 Dr. Lewisohn was on research leave for a project entitled "Flowers of Persian Song and Verse: a Database Website for the Golha Programmes" which was sponsored by a British Academy Research Development Award.  He was working on construction of a searchable, relational database for the Golha (‘Flowers of Persian Song and Music’) Iranian radio programmes, ca. 850 hours of programmes broadcast from 1956-79, today referred to by scholars and musicians as an encyclopedia of Persian music and poetry. Accessed by a website, the database includes bio-bibliographical data on the performers and authors, musical notation for songs, transcriptions of poetry, and commentaries included in the programmes in order to make them available over the internet, searchable by musicians, vocalists, composers, reciters, poets’ names, as well as by musical mode, submode, poem, literary and musical genre, and poetic meter. More information on the Golha project.