Amir Moosavi

Amir Moosavi


amir.moosavi [at]

Office Location

Hill Hall, 518

Office Hours

By Appointment

I came to Rutgers--Newark in the fall of 2018, following a year-long postdoc from the Volkswagenstiftung and Mellon Foundation in Berlin (2016-17) and a Visiting Assistant Professorship of Modern Iranian Studies at Brown University (2017-18). My research and teaching interests cover modern Arabic and Persian literatures, with an emphasis on Iran, Iraq, the Levant, and Afghanistan as well as the cultural history of the modern Middle East. I'm particularly interested in the way that cultural production deals with violent pasts and creates narratives and counter-narratives of conflicts. Currently, my primary research project is a book manuscript entitled, The Dust That Never Settled: Afterlives of the Iran-Iraq War in Arabic and Persian Literatures. The book argues for the expansion of comparative literary and cultural studies across the Arabic and Persian linguistic spheres based on the common experience of the Iran-Iraq war and the various responses of writers to it since 1980. 

My other projects are based on the ramifications of the events that took place in the late 1970s and 1980s in cultural production emerging from the Arab and Persianate worlds, a co-edited volume on sensory readings of Persian literature, various translation projects from Arabic and Persian fiction and representations of the city in modern Arabic and Persian fiction. 

Courses Taught

Foundations of Literary Study (fall 2018, 2019)

War and Representation in the Modern Middle East (fall 2018)

Translation: Theory, Debate Practice (fall 2019)

Studies in Literary Relations: "Around 1979: Reading Politics, Revolution and War in the Middle East" 

Literature and Controversy (summer 2020)


Modern Persian literature

Modern Arabic literature

War literature

Translation studies

Comparative approaches to the literatures of South and Southwest Asia and North Africa

Representations of the city in film and literature

Arabic and Persian language pedagogy

Research Initiatives

Middle East Studies Minor


Select Awards

Volkswagen/Mellon Foundations Postdoctoral Fellowship in the Humanities, 2016-2017

Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research abroad Fellowship for Jordan, the United Kingdom and the Netherlands, 2013

Jacob K. Javits Fellowship, U.S. Department of Education, 2008-2013

Center for Arabic Study Abroad fellowship (CASA II), University of Damascus, Syria, 2010

Startalk Scholarship for National Capital Language Resource Center on Teaching Arabic to College and High School students, Georgetown University, 2008

Center for Arabic Study Abroad Fellowship (CASA I), American University in Cairo, 2005-2006


New York University, Ph.D. Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies, 2016

New York University, M.A. Near Eastern Studies

University of Wisconsin at Madison, B.A. History


Select Publications

“Dark Corners and the Limits of Ahmad Dehqan’s War Front Fiction” Middle East Critique, Volume 27, no. 1 (February 2017). Reprinted in Debating the Iran-Iraq War in Contemporary Iran (co-edited with Narges Bajoghli), Routledge (April 2018)

“How to Write Death: Disenchanting Martyrdom in two Novels of the Iran-Iraq War” Alif: Journal of Comparative Poetics, No. 35 (2015)

“Reading the ‘1979 Moment’ in the Middle East – An Interview with Amir Moosavi” (May 2017)

“Editor’s Introduction: Battling Truths: The Legacy of the Iran-Iraq War in the Islamic Republic of Iran,” co-authored with Narges Bajoghli, Middle East Critique, Volume 27, no. 1 (February 2017). Reprinted in Debating the Iran-Iraq War in Contemporary Iran (co-edited with Narges Bajoghli)

“War’s Other Voices: Home Front Narratives in Persian and Arabic Fiction” in Moments of Silence: Authenticity in the Cultural Expressions of the Iran-Iraq War, 1980-1988, (Eds.) Khakpour, Khorrami and Vatanabadi, NYU Press (2016)