MemberDr. Nedda Mehdizadeh, Ph.D.

…ugh Djanet Sears’ Harlem Duet”

Article, “Persia and the Triangulation of Early Modern Encounter”

Monograph, Translating Persian in Early Modern English Writing…
…akespeare in Black America. Ed. Patricia Cahill and Kim F. Hall. Journal of American Studies.


“Robert Sherley and the Persian Habit.” England’s Asian Renaissance. Ed. Su Fang Ng and Carmen Nocentelli. University of Delaware Press.


I am a full-time lecturer at UCLA in Writing Programs. My pedagogical and scholarly interests include early modern transnational encounter, English travelers (to the Persian Empire), Safavid Persia, race and ethnicity, and Critical Diversity Studies.

MemberLevi Thompson

…Translations of Arabic and Persian poetry

Monograph: Re-Orienting Modernism: East-East Poetic Exchange in Arabic and Persian

…Dissertation: Speaking Laterally: Transnational Poetics and the Rise of Modern Arabic and Persian Poetry

A Transnational Approach to ʿAbd al-Wahhāb al-Bayātī’s ʿUmar al-Khayyām

Strange Bedfellows: The Crisis of Modernity in Naguib Mahfouz’s al-Qahirah al-Jadid…

Levi Thompson holds a BA in History and Government from the College of William and Mary in Virginia, where he grew up in the Appalachian Mountains. He has an MA in Arabic and Islamic Studies from the University of Pennsylvania and a PhD in Arabic Literature from the University of California, Los Angeles. His dissertation, Speaking Laterally: Transnational Poetics and the Rise of Modern Arabic and Persian Poetry in Iraq and Iran (, brings together the theoretical richness of Comparative Literature and the philological rigor of Area Studies to critically investigate the development of literary modernism in the Middle East. After completing his PhD in 2017, Levi was the Artemis A.W. and Martha Joukowsky Postdoctoral Fellow in Gender Studies at the Pembroke Center at Brown University, where he was a member of the Pembroke Seminar organized on the topic “The Cultures of Pacifism.” While at Brown, he transformed a dissertation chapter into the forthcoming article “An Iraqi Poet and the Peace Partisans: Transnational Pacifism and the Poetry of Badr Shākir al-Sayyāb,” to appear in College Literature. He is currently working on several projects, including a book manuscript tentatively titled Re-Orienting Modernism: East-East Poetic Exchange in Arabic and Persian, a book chapter about the Iranian leftist poet Aḥmad Shāmlū for a collection on Persian literature as world literature, and translations of poetry and prose by the Syro-Palestinian poet Ramy al-Asheq, among others. Levi teaches courses covering modern Middle Eastern literature, cinema, and culture more broadly, with a focus on the Arabic- and Persian-speaking worlds during the twentieth century. While studying Arabic in Cairo during the 2011 uprising, Levi co-founded Tahrir Documents, a digital archive of paper ephemera distributed by protestors in Tahrir Square which a group of volunteers collected, translated into English, and made available online.

MemberJulie Cassiday

…n forthcoming Beauty without Taboo:  Saint Petersburg’s New Academy of Fine Arts (1980s-2000s), ed. Helena Goscilo and Vlad Strukov. “Persian Cargo on a Russian Ark:  The Role of Iran in Sokurov’s Russian Ark.”  Article co-written with Leyla Rouhi, forthcoming in 2017…

I teach Russian language, literature, and culture at Williams College, and my research focuses on performance–construed in the broadest possible sense–in Russian culture.  I’ve published on topics ranging from early Soviet show trials to the cult of personality surrounding Vladimir Putin.

MemberAngelina Del Balzo

Entries on “Falques, Marianne-Agnès, Agenor and Ismena; or, the War of the Tender Passions (1759)” and “Anon., Memoirs of Maria, A Persian Slave (1790)”, The Cambridge Guide to the Eighteenth-Century Novel, 1660-1820, ed. April London (Cambridge: Cambridge University P…

Angelina Del Balzo is Assistant Professor in the Program in Cultures, Civilizations, and Ideas at Bilkent University in Ankara, Turkey. Her research focuses on seventeenth- and eighteenth-century British literature and theater.

MemberDonald Haase

…ula 47.3-4 (2006): 222-30.

“The Arabian Nights, Visual Culture, and Early German Cinema.” Fabula 45.3-4 (2004): 261-74. Reprinted in Persian in Honar—ketâb-e mâh 81-82 (special issue on the Arabian Nights, part 2) (July 2005): 80-90. Reprinted in The Arabian Nights in …

My research on German, French, English, and American fairy tales, folktales, literature, and film spans topics from the 18th century to the present. I am general editor of the Series in Fairy-Tale Studies published by Wayne State University Press and former editor of the international journal Marvels & Tales: Journal of Fairy-Tale Studies. I serve on the editorial board of Marvels & Tales and on the advisory boards of Fairy Tale Review, Gramarye, Dzieciństwo: Literatura i Kultura, and the Chichester Centre for Fairy Tales, Fantasy, and Speculative Fiction.