Recorded: May 19, 2022
Event: The World of Ancient Iran and the West
Citation: Shayegan, M. Rahim. "Universality and Alterity in the Achaemenid World." Pourdavoud Center: The World of Ancient Iran and the West (May 19, 2022).
by M. Rahim Shayegan (University of California, Los Angeles)
Rahim Shayegan is the Jahangir and Eleanor Amuzegar Professor of Iranian, and director of Pourdavoud Center for the Study of the Iranian World at UCLA. He has authored and edited several books, among them: Arsacids and Sasanians: Political Ideology in Post-Hellenistic and Late Antique Persia (Cambridge UP, 2011); Aspects of History and Epic in Ancient Iran: From Gaumāta to Wahnām (Harvard UP, 2012); and Cyrus the Great: Life and Lore (Harvard UP, 2019). He is currently working on a number of volumes on the Achaemenid and Sasanian empires, among them Des Achéménides aux Sassanides.
Universality and Alterity in the Achaemenid World
The lecture shall examine against the backdrop of ancient Iranian cosmogony (in the diachrony), the universality claim of the Achaemenids, and explore how discrete spheres of alterity in the West and East, the sum of which constituted the Achaemenid alter orbis, were created, named, and tolerated without compromising the imperial space and its aspiration to universality.