Tuesday, July 06, 2004

Frye Receives Kudos In Iran

Description of Selected News: "Frye Receives Kudos In Iran

Tehran Times Culture Desk
TEHRAN (MNA) –- A ceremony was held here on June 27 to pay tribute to the 6-decade endeavors of Richard Nelson Frye on his lifetime contribution to Iranology, research work on the Persian language, and the history and culture of Iran.

Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance, Ahmad Masjed-Jame’i and several writers and researchers participated in the ceremony.

Expressing his appreciation over the 60-year efforts of Frye, Masjed-Jame’i said that the shining background of Frye proves the fact that he paid attention to the history, geography, literature, and linguistics of Iran.

Pointing to works by Frye, he added, “A selection of works by Frye narrates the story of Iranians since ancient times, in which he has pointed out that the sequence of Iranian tradition is the secret of its eternity. “Frye considers the Persian language as the cultural ambassador of Iran stretching from the borders of China to Anatolia’s beach, and Frye’s ability to write books about Iran indicates his deep knowledge of various current languages spoken in Iran.”

“His works are not just limited to book writing and translation he has made great attempts in establishing several Iranology institutes in the world. In his translations, Frye has introduced the great Iranian literary works familiarizing the world with Iranian culture and literature, and in his own books he has detailed how Islamic civilization developed in this land,” he went on to say.

Noting the impression of Iranians on Islam, the minister stated that highlighting the part Iran played in changing Islam to a global civilization with a rich culture is another achievement of Frye’s efforts.

He concluded that research work by Frye is a great source for Iranian researchers and Iran lovers. His endeavors earned Frye the title “Lover of Iran” given to him by Iranian encyclopedist Dehkhoda 50 years ago.

Participant Dr. Fat’hollah Mojtaba’i a student of Frye’s for 5 years at Harvard University said the study of Iranology had long faced problems because in the Western academic system, it had been reduced to the study of linguistics. Frye used the language as one of the means to his Iranology research. Mojtaba’i explaining the impact of Frye’s Iranian historical texts said, “Frye has written on the history of Iran before and after Islam in which he has disclosed the dark corners of the first periods of Islam.”

Another participant Jaleh Amuzgar stated that Professor Frye remains always in her mind with the love he has toward Iran down deep in his heart and his name is registered in the hearts of all Iranians and Iran lovers.

“Professor Frye has studied all the aspects of Iranian culture. He finds a sequence in the rich culture of Iran indicating that Iran’s culture is a rich collection beginning in ancient times, having been spread to every corner of this land.

“For real Iran lovers, Iranian culture and its charisma have existed since ancient times in thoughts, literature, poetry, and in all art work,” she further noted.

Pointing to the Iranian spirit, she explained, “What Frye calls Iranian spirit, I call Iranian charisma, which stands on top of the Bisotun Inscription in Kermanshah, descends in the blue tiles of Sheikh Lotfollah Mosque in Isfahan, appears in the Mausoleum of Sheikh Safieddin in Ardebil, and shines in the silver plates of the Sassanid era.

Dr. Kheirandish, underlined that Richard Frye selected Iranian culture among world cultures for its lofty values. Iranians long loved beauty, purity and light, which have always remained in their hearts and minds.

A plaque of honor and several awards were conferred to Professor Richard Nelson Frye at the ceremony.

Richard Nelson Frye (born in 1920) is a well known scholar in central Asian studies who has written many books on Iran. Graduating from Harvard in 1946, he taught at Habibiya College in Kabul (1942-44), Harvard University (1948-90), Frankfurt University (1959-60), Hamburg University (1968-69), University of Shiraz (1970-76), and University of Tajikistan (1990-92).

Prof. Frye founded the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at Harvard. He served as Director of the Asia Institute in Shiraz (1970-1975), was on the Board of Trustees of University of Shiraz (1974-78), and Chaired the Committee on Inner Asian Studies, at Harvard (1983-89).

He has published numerous works, including: History of the Nation of Archers (1954); The Heritage of Persia (1962); Bukhara (1965); The Golden Age of Persia (1975); The History of Ancient Iran (1983); and The Heritage of Central Asia (1996). He was also the editor of Vol. IV of The Cambridge History of Iran (1975)."

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