Utah Afghan Community Fund
Watch Reza Aslan’s Announcement
In 2003, almost thirty years after they left, came the opportunity to return. Would they find an unrecognizable Iran? This journey became far more than a research trip, its ostensible purpose. They renewed ties of friendship, made new acquaintances, visited exciting new locations as well as old, familiar ones. They came away with the satisfaction of knowing that what they most cherished had survived the years of turmoil and change.
Forthcoming Baskerville Institute Lectures & Related Events (2021-2022)
Liora Hendelman-Baavur Book Talk: “Creating the Modern Iranian Woman: Popular Culture between Two Revolutions (The Global Middle East)” November 22th, 2021 at 12:00 PM (MST) or 9 PM Tel Aviv –> Register Here
James Goode Book Talk: “Living, Loving Iran: A Memoir” December 13th, 2021 12:00 – 1:30 PM (MST) –> Register Here
Hooman Estelami Book Talk: “The Americans of Urumia: Iran’s First Americans and their Mission to the Assyrian Christians” January 22nd, 2022 at 12:00 PM (MST) –> Register Here
Suzanne Maloney: “The Iranian Revolution at 43: Sources of Tensions and Conflict with the United States” February 14th, 2022 at 12:00 PM – 1:30 PM (MST) –> Register Here
Richard Garlitz: “Mission for Development: Utah Universities and Economic Development in Iran” March 14th, 2022 at 12:00 PM – 1:30 PM (MST) –> Register Here
Jasamin Rostam-Kolayi is Professor of History and Department Chair at California State University, Fullerton. She is director of an oral history project on Peace Corps Iran and has interviewed many former volunteers. Her articles are published in Iranian Studies, Journal of Middle East Women’s Studies, and Middle East Critique, and book chapters in Iran and the Surrounding World, The Making of Modern Iran: State and Society under Riza Shah and The Routledge Handbook of the Global Sixties.
Though studies of Iran-U.S. relations of the late twentieth century often narrate accounts of bitter resentment and deep mistrust, the story of the U.S. Peace Corps program in Iran, which operated from 1962 to 1976, provides a complex picture of engagement between Iranians and Americans. This talk discusses how the Peace Corps came to Iran, its formative years and peak in the mid-to-late-1960s, why it departed from Iran, and its layered legacy at the program’s 60th anniversary.
After taking a B.A. at the College of Saint Teresa in Winona, Minnesota, Joan Gaughan taught history and English to eighth-graders in Beloit, Wisconsin. The year was 1963. The assassination of President Kennedy that November prompted her to enlist in the Peace Corps and serve in Rasht and Lahijan, Iran. A trip to India during that service led to a life-long love of that country as well as love for the people of Iran. Her Peace Corps service was followed by a year of study at Columbia University, where she studied under Professor Ainslee Embree, who deepened her love for India, and Professor Ehsan Yar-Shater, who introduced her to the beauties of classical Persian literature. She transferred to the University of Michigan, where obtaining a doctorate in the British Empire allowed her to indulge her passion for both countries.
Projects Under Consideration:
Baskerville Digital Friendship Platform (BFP):
Preserve, Strengthen, Enhance, and Promote Bonds of Friendship Between Americans and Iranians.
BFM is a project of the Baskerville Institute, a nonprofit, nonpartisan, nongovernmental organization devoted to supporting and strengthening the bonds of friendships between Iranians and Americans.
The principal mission of the Baskerville Digital Friendship Platform is the following:
a. Document the contributions of Americans who came to Iran of their own volition to help the Iranian people with their education, training, development projects, and integration into the global society and economy.
b. Build and Sustain the memory of more than a century of friendship (1811-1978) between Iranians and Americans through the exchange of shared democratic values, common experiences, and knowledge. The platform will be a place for historical documents, oral histories, photos and videos, and personal stories of friendship between Americans and Iranians.
c. The platform will Initiate Bridge-Building projects that facilitate friendship and peace between the Iranian and American peoples.
d. Educate Iranians and Americans about ways in which positive change in this relationship can be brought about.
e. As part of this educational mission, this platform will translate and upload important historical documents, making them available to the public in the United States and in Iran.
Click Here to Watch the Baskerville Friendship Platform Promo on YouTube
Click Here to Watch the Baskerville Friendship Mural Promo on YouTube
The Civic Friendship Initiative:
A joint project between the Baskerville Institute & Foundation for Religious Diplomacy
The Civic Friendship Initiative will examine theological and ethical foundations of friendship and explore how friendship between diverse religious groups can be practically inspired and spread contagiously by facilitating ‘Heart and Mind’ conversations between thought leaders, arranging trust building/problem solving workshops in regions of conflict. Civic Friendship also organizes bi-monthly webinars that explore religious dynamics of friendship and friendship dynamics of religion.
Visit our website
Peace Corps Iran Conference
“Looking Back to a Path Forward”
Peace Corps Iran Association Virtual Conference
October 2, 2021
Baskerville Institute Book of the Month
Matthew Shannon, ed. American-Iranian Dialogues: From Constitution to White Revolution, c. 1890s-1960s. Bloomsbury, New Approaches to International History, 2021.
Bringing together historians of US foreign relations and scholars of Iranian studies, American-Iranian Dialogues examines the cultural connections between Americans and Iranians from the constitutional period of the 1890s through to the start of the White Revolution in the 1960s.
Taking an innovative cultural approach, chapters are centered around major themes in American-Iranian encounters and cultural exchange throughout this period, including stories of origin, cultural representations, nationalism and discourses on development. Expert contributors draw together different strands of US-Iranian relations to discuss a range of path-breaking topics such as the history of education, heritage exchange, oil development and the often-overlooked interactions between American and Iranian non-state actors.
Through exploring the understudied cultural dimensions of US-Iranian relations, this book will be essential reading for students and scholars interested in American history, international history, Iranian studies and Middle Eastern studies.
“Matthew K. Shannon has brought together twelve outstanding scholars to produce a collection of essential reading for anybody interested in the history of US-Iranian relations. It makes a vital contribution to the literature by shedding light on the role played by non-state actors in this transnational relationship.”
―Dr Ben Offiler, Senior Lecturer in History, Sheffield Hallam University, UK
THE BASKERVILLE INSTITUTE
The Baskerville Institute builds on its namesake’s legacy to promote understanding and respect between Americans and Iranians. It runs a lecture/webinar series, hosts a digital archive, supports research fellows and student interns, publishes a newsletter and translation projects, organizes cultural exhibitions and educational programs, and otherwise facilitates bridge-building between Americans and Iranians. The non-profit Baskerville Institute is located in Salt Lake City, Utah and draws on the experiences and expertise of individuals around the United States and across the world.
350 E 400 S, Salt Lake City, UT 84111
Newsletter designed and edited by Delara Hosseini (email@example.com)