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The Basics of the Persian Language

This course is intended to teach students the basics of the Persian (Farsi) language. It is a non-credit course that meets weekly on Thursdays, starting November 8 and excluding Thanksgiving. The course will cover the skills of speaking, reading, writing and listening.

The course will be held only if at least five applicants show interest. If the course is held and enough people remain interested, it will be continued in the spring semester.

More information about Farsi (Persian):

Persian is one of the major languages of the contemporary Middle East. It is spoken throughout Iran and over large areas of Afghanistan. One of its branches, Tajik, is widely spoken in Central Asia. Persian also was the language of government and administration in much of Central Asia and most of India until the 19th century. Because in structure it is an Indo-European language (although written in the Arabic script), Persian is one of the easiest Middle Eastern languages to learn. Students also benefit from the fact that the written and spoken forms of the language are close and have remained relatively constant over time, so they are quickly able to read a range of classical and modern materials. There are none of the difficulties of a multiplicity of dialects or of a great chasm between classical and modern.

Since Persian is the second language of Islam with many important works of history, literature, philosophy and Sufism (Islamic mysticism) in Persian, it would be beneficial for students in Islamic Studies to know this language. For those who are interested in Shi`ism and Islamic philosophy, studying the language would complement the fact that Iran has been a major center for Shia Islam as well as Islamic philosophy.Its literature contains some of the finest epic and lyric poetry and its general intellectual and artistic contribution to Islamic culture is unmatched.

Morteza Razazadeh, who is in the International Peacemaking Program, will teach the course. He has Bachelor of Arts degrees from the Islamic Seminary of Qom and the Imam Khomeini Educational and Research Institute and a Master of Arts degree from the University of Religions and Denominations in Iran. He is Cultural Deputy of the International Institute for Islamic Studies (IIIS) in Qom, Iran.

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