Fri 13 November | Lecture Kevin van Bladel | Persian Divergent in the Eastern Arab Colonies

On Friday 13 November, Kevin van Bladel will give a lecture about the origins of New Persian. The lecture takes place in P.N. van Eykhof 3-005 at 15.15 hours.

Persian Divergent in the Eastern Arab Colonies

This lecture summarizes the argument of the first half of a book, nearing completion, on the genesis of New Persian. It corrects the current standard theory on the origins of New Persian, which holds that the language arose from a dialect of the language used in the Sasanian court. Close attention to sources in Arabic and to the history of the population that first spoke New Persian, and engagement with recent studies in contact linguistics, contribute to a new account of discontinuity in a colonial context rather than continuity.


Kevin van Bladel received his PhD in Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations at Yale University in 2004. After nine years as a faculty member in Classics at the University of Southern California, where he was the founding director of that university’s Middle East Studies Program, he moved to The Ohio State University in 2013, where he is now Associate Professor and Chair of the department of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures. He is the author of The Arabic Hermes (Oxford 2009) and articles on ancient and medieval Near Eastern traditions of learning. He has recently finished a book on the early history of the Mandaeans (under review), and is writing a new book on the origins of New Persian.

Time: 15.15 hours
Location: P.N. van Eykhof 3, room 005, Leiden.

Kevin van Bladel is also keynote speaker at the Zenobiaconference 'Mohammed and the End of Antiquity' on 14 November. For more information go to the Zenobia website (in Dutch).

Laatst Gewijzigd: 10-11-2015