Conference Program





6:00 PM – 8:00 PM Conference Opening Event: Part and Parcel” Art Exhibition

San Francisco Art Commission Gallery

401 Van Ness Avenue, Suite 126 (War Memorial Veterans Building) 

San Francisco, CA 94102

Artists: Tannaz Farsi, Gelare Khoshgozaran, Sahar Khoury, and Minoosh Zomorodinia 

This exhibit runs January 25 – March 30, 2019

Gallery Hours: Tues-Sat 11am-6pm

Presented by the San Francisco Arts Commission and Curated by Taraneh Hemami

FRIDAY, MARCH 29, 2019

Seven Hills Conference Center, SF State 

State Dr, off Lake Merced Ave

San Francisco, CA 94132

8:00 - 9:00 AM – Registration and Coffee/Continental Breakfast

9:00 - 9:20 AM – Welcome

  • Dr. Persis Karim, Director, Center for Iranian Diaspora Studies, San Francisco State University
  • Dr. Leslie Wong, President, San Francisco State University
  • Troi Carleton, Associate Dean, College of Liberal & Creative Arts, San Francisco State University

9:25 - 9:45 AM – Keynote Presentation – “Mobile Subjects, Multiple Fields: Iranian Diaspora Studies as Transnational Inquiry”

  • Dr. Amy Malek, International Studies, College of Charleston

9:50 - 11:00 AM – “Research on Iranian Diaspora Communities I”

  • “Iranian Migrants in French Society—The Second Generations’ Dilemma,” Yuko Suzuki, Mondes Iranien et Indien en France, Paris, France
  • “From Tehran to Seoul to Los Angeles: The Iranian Diaspora and Transnational Circuits of Change,” Dr. Michael Jin, University of Illinois, Chicago
  •  “Seeking Home: The Iranian Queer Community of Toronto and Public Space,” Paniz Moayeri, University of Waterloo, Canada
  •  “Agency and Im/Mobility Among Iranian Americans in Michigan,” Dr. Camron Michael Amin, University of Michigan-Dearborn
  • “Iranian Translocalities and the Diaspora Imperative to Belong” Dr. Janet Bauer, Trinity College, Connecticut
  • MODERATOR: Dr. Narges Bajoghli, Johns Hopkins University

11:00 – 11:15 AM – Break

11:15-11:35 AM – Keynote Presentation – “Forty Years and More at the Limits of Whiteness”

  • Dr. Neda Maghbouleh, Department of Sociology, University of Toronto, Mississauga, Canada

11:35 AM - 12:30 PM – “Research on Iranian Diaspora Communities II”

  • “Chanting the Shores, Mooring in the City: Iranian Cultural Expressions in Dubai,” Dr. Amin Moghadam, Princeton University
  • “A Historical and Statistical Analysis of Iranian Immigration and the Iranian Ethnic Community in Canada,” Dr. Amir Mirfakhraie, Kwantlen Polytechnic University, Surrey, British Columbia
  • “Historicizing European Immigration: Conflict and Cohesion within Hamburg-Based Iranian Merchant Families" Dr. Sonja Moghaddari, Max Planck Institute, Germany
  • MODERATOR: Dr. Camron Michael Amin, University of Michigan-Dearborn

12:30 - 1:30 PM Lunch Panel: “Advocacy, Social Justice, and Solidarity-Building in the Iranian Diaspora Community”

  • Raha Jorjani, Director, Immigration Representation Project, Alameda County
  • Dr. Niaz Kasravi, Director/Founder, Avalan Institute
  • Mana Kharrazi, Executive Director, Iranian Alliances Across Borders
  • MODERATOR/PANELIST: Elica Vafaie, Asian Americans Advancing Justice

1:30 - 2:30 PM – “Feminism, Gender, and Transformation of Iranian Women “

  • “Modernist Trends Among Iranians and Iranian Americans: Women’s Transnational Stories of Transformation,” Dr. Mary Elaine Hegland, Santa Clara University
  • “Transcending Boundaries in Iranian Transnational Marriages,” Dr. Ashraf Zahedi, Independent Researcher
  • “Iranian Diasporic Feminism and Politics of Imaginary Space,” Yalda Hamidi, Stonybrook University
  • “Queer Iranian-American Women in the Diaspora: Transnational Narratives of Agency and Resistance,” Dr. Shadee Abdi, Arizona State University
  • MODERATOR: Dr. Nima Naghibi, Ryerson University, Toronto, Canada

2:30 - 3:30 PM – “Literature and Performance”

  • “Unmooring Iranian Diaspora Literature: The Post-National Poetry of Mimi Khalvati and Roger Sedarat,” Holly Fathi, Oxford University
  • “More than Meets the Eye: Multiple and Diverse Points of View in Iranian Diasporic Literature,” Leila Zonouzi, University of California, Santa Barbara
  • “On the Afterlife of Loss in Sahar Delijani's Children of the Jacaranda Tree and Solmaz Sharif's Look ,” Dr. Allia Ida Griffin, Santa Clara University
  • “Objects of Difference: Diasporic Bodies, Translocal Affects, and the Primacy of Passage over Positionality,” Sareh Z. Afshar, New York University
  • MODERATOR: Dr. Amy Motlagh, University of California, Davis

3:30 - 3:45 PM – Break

3:45 - 4:50 PM – “Race and Racialization in the Iranian Diaspora”

  • “Eating the Iranian Other: Liberal Multiculturalism and American Exceptionalism in Mixed Nutz,” Ida Yalzadeh, Brown University
  • “Liberalism and Racialization in the Age of Rising Far-Right Movements: Reflections on the Iranian Diaspora in the US and Germany,” Dr. Sahar Sadeghi, Muhlenberg College & Dr. Yousef Baker, CSU, Long Beach
  • “Race and Anti-Blackness Among Iranian Americans,” Dr. Sahar Razavi, Sacramento State University
  • “Educational Self-Determination in the Iranian Diaspora: Tracing Intergenerational Dialogues on Race, Parenting, and Identity,” Dr. Shirin Vossoughi, Northwestern University
  • “Another Vision: The Iranian Diaspora, Social Justice, and the Making of Cosmopolitan Imagined Communities,” Ana Ghoreishian, University of Arizona
  • MODERATOR: Dr. Niaz Kasravi, Avalan Institute

5:00 - 6:30 PM – Wine and Cheese Reception

  • Special Performance of “Together Tea,” (one-woman play) with Leyla Modirzadeh

Based on the novel by Marjan Kamali, Adapted by Dr. Matthew Spangler, San Jose State University

Evening – Dinner on Your Own


Seven Hills Conference Center, SF State 

State Dr, off Lake Merced Ave

San Francisco, CA 94132

8:00 - 9:00 AM – Coffee/Continental Breakfast

9:00 - 10:00 AM – “Songs of the Second Generation: Iranian Diasporic Literature and Film in the 21st Century”

  • “The Relational Past: Bilingualism in Recent Iranian American Poetry,” Dr. Kamran Javadizadeh, Villanova University
  • “The Green Wave: Iranian Cinema, American Life, and Global Dissent,” Dr. Marie Ostby, Connecticut College
  • “Machines Performing Human Convictions: Film and Bodily Collective Innervation in Film and Other Media,” Dr. Negar Mottahedeh, Duke University
  • “Remembering the Flight: History, Memory and Imagination,” Dr. Jasmin Darznik, California College of the Arts
  • MODERATOR: Dr. Nasrin Rahimieh, University of California, Irvine

10:05 - 11:05 AM – “Media, Digital Diasporas, and Film

  • “Cyberbodies, Iranian Immigrants, and New Age Healing,” Torang Asadi, Duke University
  • "How Iranian Female Filmmakers Change the Dialogue," Parisa Barani, Film Director
  • "Iranian-American Voices in the US Newsroom," Melissa Etehad, Journalist, Los Angeles Times
  • “Iranians and Iranian Americans in US Popular Entertainment Media,” Dr. Pantea Javidan, Stanford University
  • MODERATOR: Dr. Niki Akhavan, Catholic University of America, Washington DC

11:05 – 11:15 – Break

11:15 AM - 12:15 PM – “Music in the Diaspora Context

  • “Composing Persian Music in the Diaspora: Music, Identity, Authenticity, and Universals,” Mehdi Rezania, University of Alberta
  • “Joy Against the Odds: Diasporic Music Videos in 1980s Iran,” Dr. Nahid Siamdoust, Yale University
  • “Havaaye Diyaaro Daaram: Diasporic Sounds and the Rise of Tehrangeles Pop,” Arash Saedinia, Independent Researcher
  • “Requiems for the Motherland: Nostalgia, Homeland Longing and Belonging in Exilic Persian Popular Music,” Shabnam Goli, University of Florida
  • MODERATOR: Dr. Babak Elahi, Rochester Institute of Technology

12:15 - 1:05 PM – Lunch Film Screening, We Are Here: Iranian Americans in the San Francisco Bay Area (excerpt)

  • Soumyaa Behrens, Director, Documentary Film Institute, SF State University & Dr. Persis Karim, SF State University
  • Award of Student Prizes for Research and Creative Projects in Iranian Diaspora STudies, Dr. Persis Karim, SF State University

 1:10 - 2:10 PM – “Contemporary Practices: Visual Artists of the Iranian Diaspora”

  • Ala Ebtekar, Artist; Stanford University
  • Tannaz Farsi, Artist; University of Oregon
  • Taraneh Hemami, Artist; California College of the Arts
  • Gelare Khoshgozaran, Artist,
  • MODERATOR: Dr. Shiva Balaghi, The American University in Cairo

2:15 - 3:15 PM – “Children of Revolutionaries: The Afterlives of the Iranian Left”

  • Dr. Arash Davari, Whitman College
  • Nina Farnia, University of California, Davis
  • Dr. Golnar Nikpour, Dartmouth College
  • Dr. Roozbeh Shirazi, University of Minnesota
  • MODERATOR/PANELIST: Dr. Manijeh Nasrabadi, Barnard College

3:15 – 3:30 – Break

3:30 - 4:30 PM – “Diaspora Filmmaking in a Global Context”

  • Aggie Ebrahimi Bazaz, Muhlenberg College
  • Anahita Ghazvinizadeh, University of Iowa
  • Mohammad Gorjestani, Writer and Director
  • Marjaneh Moghimi, Founder/Director, Butimar Productions
  • MODERATOR: Dr. Britta Sjogren, School of Cinema, SF State

4:30 - 4:50 PM Keynote Presentation – “Locating Ajamistan: Moving Across Borders in the Digital Humanities”

  • Dr. Beeta Baghoolizadeh, History and Africana Studies, Bucknell University

4:50 - 5:30 PM – “Iranian Diaspora Studies in an Urgent Time”

  • Dr. Narges Bajoghli, Johns Hopkins University
  • Dr. Babak Elahi, Rochester Institute of Technology
  • Dr. Nima Naghibi, Ryerson University
  • Dr. Amy Motlagh, University of California, Davis
  • Dr. Nasrin Rahimieh, University of California, Irvine
  • MODERATOR: Dr. Persis Karim, SF State

6:00 - 9:00 PM Conference Closing Event: Reception for "Once at Present" Art Exhibit

Fashion Performance by Hushidar Mortezaie and Musical Performance by Mohsen Namjoo

Minnesota Street Project Art Gallery
1275 Minnesota St

San Francisco, CA 94107

This exhibit runs March 29 – April 20, 2019

Curated by Taraneh Hemami and Kevin B. Chen