PhD Mohammad Mahdi Mojahedi

  • Curriculum Vitae

    Academic Appointments

    • Friedrich Schiller University

    Research Associate, Historisches Institut, then Seminar für Orientalistik, since May 2018

    • Science and Research Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran

    Department of Law, Theology, and Political Science, since Oct 2016

    • Zentrum Moderner Orient

    Visiting scholar, Apr 2016 – Aug 2016

    • Berlin Graduate School for Muslim Cultures and Societies

    Visiting scholar, Aug 2015 – Mar 2016

    • Freie Universität Berlin, DE

    Visiting scholar, Centre for Middle Eastern and North African Politics Department of Political Science, Aug 2014 – Jul 2015. 

    • Leiden University, NL

    Visiting Senior Lecturer, School of Middle Eastern Studies, 2011–2014.

    • University of Amsterdam, NL

    Visiting Researcher, Workgroup Civil Society in West Asia, Department of Political Science, 2009–2010.

    • Mofid University, IR

    Senior Lecturer, Department of Political Science, 2005–2010.

    • Institute for National Studies, IR

    Director, Department of Political Culture Studies, 2004–2005.

    • Research Institute for the Humanities and Social Sciences, IR

    Associate Director and Faculty Member, Political Science Faculty, 2002–2003.


    • Ph.D. Research Institute for the Humanities and Cultural Studies, Political Science (Cum Laude), Apr 2005

    Primary Fields: Middle East Politics (Distinction), Political Theories (Distinction), Intellectual History (Distinction)

    Designated Emphasis: Comparative Political Hermeneutics

    Dissertation: A Critical Reading of the Epistemic, Non-Jurisprudential, Foundations of Ayatollah Khomeini’s Political Thought

    • M.A. University College London, Human Rights (Distinction), Nov 2009

    Thesis: States as Moral Agents of Human Rights Standards

    • M.A.  Imam Sadeq University, Political Science and Islamic Studies (Distinction), Jan 1998

    Thesis: “Critical Rationality” as a Methodological Device for Criticizing Normative Facets of Political Theories

    Fellowships, Honors, Awards, and Grants

    • The Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW):

    KNAW Visiting Professorship at Leiden University Institute for Area Studies, Jan – Dec 2014.

    • Danish Institute for Human Rights (DIHR):

    Visiting Fellowship, Oct – Nov 2014.

    • Netherlands Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities and Social Sciences (NIAS/KNAW):

    EURIAS Fellowship at NIAS, 2012–2013.

    • University of Cambridge:
      • Senior Fellowship at Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences, and Humanities (CRASSH), Jan – Jul 2011.
      • Associate Senior Fellowship at Centre for Governance and Human Rights (CGHR), Jan – Jul 2011.
      • Membership and By-Fellowship (Honor) at Churchill College, Jan – Dec 2011.
    • University College London (UCL):

     Departmental Fellowship, 2008–2009.

    • Kulturwissenschaftliches Institut (KWI):

     Grant, Summer Academy, 2007.

    • Workgroup Islam and Modernity, Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin (WiKo – German Institute for Advanced Studies):
      • Postdoctoral Fellowship, Workgroup Islam and Modernity, 2003–2004.
      • Grant, Summer Academy, 2003.


  • Publikationen

    Papers and Articles

    1. MM Mojahedi et al. The Mechanisms of Expansion in the Russian Revolution and the Islamic Revolution: A Comparison. Political and International Research Quarterly. Vol. 11, No. 44, Autumn 2020. 75 – 97. (Persian)
    2. An Introduction to the Conditions of Dialogue from a Critical Rational Point of View. Hikmat va Marefat. Special Issue. Vol. 14. No. 5. Feb 2020. 13-16. (Persian)
    3. A Critical Review of Nancy Fraser’s Theory of Justice. Mashgh-e Farda Bimonthly.  Vol. 1. No. 1. April-May 2019. (Persian)
    4. MM Mojahedi et. al. A Critical Rational Analysis of the Hinderances of the Humanities in Iran. Theoretical Politics. Vol. 7. Autumn and Winter 2019. 221-251. (Persian)
    5. MM Mojahedi et. al. The Cultural Obstacles of the Scientific Development in Iran. Political Studies Quarterly. Vol. 11. No. 43. Winter 2018. 49 – 70. (Persian)
    6. MM Mojahedi et. al. The Political and Structural Obstacles of the Scientific Development in Iran. Political Studies Quarterly. Vol. 10. No. 38. Winter 2017. 195 – 216. (Persian)
    7. “Is There Toleration in Islam?” Reframing a Post-Islamist Question in a Post-Secular Context. ReOrient. Vol. 2, No. 1 (Autumn 2016). 51-72.
    8. The Tripartite Normalisation Trend vs. Exceptionalism in Politics, Mehrnameh Monthly, No. 52. Jul 2017.
    9. Symbolic Capital of Reformism in Iran: A Political-Economic Analysis, Andishe-ye Pouya, No. 45. Aug 2017.
    10. Gender-Oriented Discrimination vs. Life as Politics” in  Zanan-e Emrouz, No. 26. Jun 2017.
    11. “Exceptionalism vs. Normalisation” Cheragh-e Roshan Quarterly 1(1), May 2017.
    12. A Critique of Culturalism: The Special Case of Mostafa Malekian, Andish-ye Pooya. No. 39. Nov. 2016.
    13. “Normalisation against Normalisation: A Political Typology” in Andishe-ye Pooya. No. 28. Aug 2015.
    14. “Editorial: Iran Moving Away from Hostile Confrontation at Home and Abroad,” Iran Newspaper, July 17, 2015.
    15. “The Poverty of Culturalism and Muslim Zealotry: A Test for the Left” (An Intellectual Exchange with Michael Walzer and Andrew F. March, Andishe-ye Pouya Bimonthly Journal of Politics and Culture, Spring 2015, 4(24) pp. 56-61 & 4(25) pp. 7-9.
    16. “Whither Saudis?” The Editorial Article in Donya-e Eqtesad Newspaper, May 3, 2015.
    17. “Editorial: A Dramatic Turnaround in the Middle East Politics beyond a Nuclear Deal,” Donya-ye Eqtesad, April 15, 2015.
    18. “The Poverty of Culturalism: Who Will Lit the Lights?” The Editorial Article in Donya-e Eqtesad Newspaper, January 20, 2015.
    19. “The Poverty of Culturalism: A Critique of Isaiah Berlin’s Theory of Violence in his ‘Message to the 21st Century’,” in Andishe-ye Pouya Bimonthly Journal of Politics and Culture, 3(20), November 2014, pp. 23-35.
    20. A Persian translation of Isaiah Berlin’s “Message to the 21st Century,” in Andishe-ye Pouya Bimonthly Journal of Politics and Culture, 3(20), November 2014, pp. 19-22. 
    21. Book review The Misty Land of Ideas and the Light of Dialogue (An Anthology of Comparative Philosophy: Western & Islamic) Edited by Ali Paya, (ICAS Press, 2013), 406 pp., in Philosophy (Journal of Royal Institute of Philosophy, UK), 89(4), Oct 2014, pp. 658-664.
    22. “From the False Dichotomy of ‘the Standard-vs.-the Ideal’ towards the Deadlock of Communitarianism,” in Ayene-ye Pazhuhesh, 25(1), No. 145, March 2013, pp. 3-25.             
    23. “From One-Layer Diplomacy to Double-Edged Multiplomacy: Reflections on New Diplomatic Openings in the Iranian Nuclear Issue” Andishe-ye Pouya Bimonthly Journal of Politics and Culture, 2 (3), 2013, pp. 45-55.
    24. “On the Question and Responsibility of Intellectuals: Re-Thinking Challenges between Iranian Heideggerians and Popperians” Mehrnameh Journal of the Humanitties, Vol. 3. No. 27. Dec 2012, 79-82.
    25. “Critical Dialogue as a Form of Life,” Andishe-ye Pouya Bimonthly Journal of Politics and Culture, (2)3, June 2012, pp. 31-36. 
    26. The Politico-Ethical Significance of John Hick’s Pluralism, Mehrnameh Journal of the Humanities, Tehran, 2012, pp. 81-95.
    27. “Islam between Culture and Politics,” National Studies, Tehran, 6(21), 2006, pp. 143-158.
    28. “Religion without God,” Madrasa, Journal of the Institute for Epistemological Research, Tehran, 2005, (1) 1, 90-95.
    29. “Islamic Mysticism and Politics? A Case Study of Ayatollah Khomeini’s Political Thought,” Name- ye Mofid Academic Quarterly, Mofid University, Autumn 2004, 44, 33-60.
    30. “Two Notions of Pluralism in the Political Philosophy of Isaiah Berlin,” in Rahbord, Tehran, Autumn 2001, 21, pp. 262-278.
    31. “Epistemological Relationship between Political Knowledge and Irfani Knowledge, in Matin Academic Quarterly, Tehran, 2(3), 2000, pp. 97-125.

    Works Translated into Other Languages


    • “Politiek geweld door een rookgordijn" ZemZem (Tijdschrift over het Midden-Oosten, Noord-Afrika en islam), (Amsterdam: Vereniging voor de Studie van het Midden-Oosten en de Islam, 2013), 9 (1), pp. 85-88.


    • «اطروحه دین بلا ربّ: الخلفیه و المکونات،» نصوص معاصره، (بیروت:‌ ربیع ۱۴۲۷)، ۶(۱)، صص. ۳۰۷ ـ ۳۲۰.

    Book Chapters

    1. “Human Rights and Muslim Forms of Life,” Religion, International Relations and Development Cooperation, Berma Klein Goldewijk (ed.), (Netherlands: Wageningen Academic Publishers), 2007, pp. 187-216.
    2. “Education, Politics, and Identity in Today Iran: a Pluralist Approach,” Civil Institutions and Identity in Iran, Davoud G. Zandi (ed.), (Tehran: Persian Civilization, 2007), 133-152.
    3. “A Methodological Critique of Religious Pedagogy in K-12 Educational System in Iran,” Religious Pedagogy in Iran, (Tehran: Iran Ministry of Education Pub. Co., 2002), pp. 3-24.
    4. “A Theoretical Model for Educational Reform in Iran,” Educational Reform, (Tehran: Iran Ministry of Education Pub. Co., 2002), pp. 38-60.
    5. “Critical Rationalism and Educational Reform” in Curriculum Planning and Rational Education, (Tehran: Iranian Society of Curriculum Planning Pub. Co., 2010), pp. 73-96.
    6. “The Iridescent Ethos: Evaluating B. Abdolkarimi’s Critique of Daryoush Shayegan’s Reénchantment Theory,” in Abdolkarimi, B. (ed.), Monism or Pluralism, An Analysis of the Ontological Social Theory, (Tehran, The Centre for Dialogue among Civilizations, 2005), 85-106.
    7. “The Iridescence of ‘Occidental Illumination’ in the Dialogue of ‘Broken Mirrors’: A pluralistic analysis of Daryoush Shayegan’s Reénchantment Theory,” (Tehran: The Centre for Dialogue among Civilizations, 2005), pp. 15-38.

    Published Interviews and Other Publications

    1. “Populism: Between Demagogy and People-Oriented Politics” in Mehrnameh, No. 50, Dec 2016. 75-82.
    2. “The Myth of Exceptional Violence in the Middle East” in Andishe-ye Eslah. Mar 2015.
    3. “In Defense of Political Science: A Critique of Wittgensteinian Methodological Approaches in Political Science” in Sokhan-e Ma, 1(3), Nov. 2014, pp. 74-90.
    4. “Philosophy Is Not A Justificatory Device, It Is There To Criticise Justificationism" Farhikhtegan Supplement (Special issue on relations between politics and philosophy), No. 1195, Oct. 6, 2013, pp. 12-13.
    5. “A Methodological Criticism on the Pathologies of Religious Pedagogy,” article presented in the seminar of “Pathology of Religious Pedagogy”, Iranian Ministry of Education, 2-3 January 2002, Tehran, published in Ettelaa’at Newspaper Literary Supplement, Tehran, 7-8 & 14 January 2002, and also in The Proceedings of the seminar of “Pathology of Religious Pedagogy,” (Tehran: Ministry of Education Pub. Co., 2003), Vol. 1, 3-25.
    6. “Editorials” in Matin Academic Quarterly Journal, Research Institute for History of the Islamic Revolution, Tehran, first five issues from Summer 1999 to Summer 2000.
    7. “Three Readings of Relations between Islam and Human Rights,” The Book of the 2nd International Conference of The Theoretical Foundations of Human Rights, UNESCO, UNDP and International Centre for Dialogue Among Civilizations, (Tehran: Mofid University Pub. Co. 2003), pp. 535-552.
    8. “Theoretical Foundations of Educational Reform in Iran: A Critique” in Theoretical Foundations of Educational Reform in Iran, (Tehran: Research Institute for Education, 2003), Vol. 1, 20-45.
    9. “Critical Rationality as a Moral Choice: Curriculum and Rational Character Training,” Proceedings of the Seminar of Curriculum and Rational Character Training, (Tehran: Iranian Curriculum Planning Association, 2003), pp. 23-45.
  • Präsentationen/Vorträge
    1. “A Critical Appraisal of the Rawlsian Notion of Human Rights” Center for Human Rights Studies, Mofid University, Qom, 24 Apr 2018.
    2. “Three Types of Social Hope: Dislocated, Impossible, and Melioristic,” National Congress of Social Hope Studies, Tehran, 27 Feb 2018.
    3. “Bad Populism, Good Populism,” Iranian Political Science Association, 21 Jan 2018.
    4. “Some Lessons from the Autumn 2017 Unrests in Iran,” Iranian Political Science Association, 14 Jan 2018.
    5. “Tolerance vs. Toleration in Imam Mousa Sadr’s Political Thought and practice” Imam Sadr Institute, Dialogue Cener, 22 Dec 2017. 
    6. “Justice, Reform, and the Politics of Hope,” Social Issues Committee of the Ettehad Party, Tehran, 17 Dec 2017.
    7. “Toleration vs. Peace,” Iranian Peace Studies Association, Iranian Political Science Association, 29 Nov 2017.
    8. “Fiqh and the Party System,” Iranian Political Science Association, 21 Oct 2017.
    9. “Tragedy and Counter-Tragedy in Russian Revolution” Conference on Russian Revolution A Century On, Iranian Political Science Association, Tehran 3 May 2017.
    10. “Ethical Elections and Electoral Ethics,” Iranian Political Science Association, Tehran, 3 May 2017.
    11. “Culturalism and the Future of Political Science in Iran,” Iranian Political Science Association, Tehran, 25 Feb 2017.
    12. “On Dialogue and Its Hindrances” Dialogue Centre of Imam Mousa Sadr Institute, Tehran, 25 Feb 2017.
    13. “Human Rights against Human Rights: Demystifying Human Rights as Commodities,” Danish Institute for Human Rights, January 25, 2016.
    14. “Tolerance vs. Toleration,” Institute for Applied Philosophy, Faculty of Philosophy, Freie Universitaet Berlin, Dec. 2015.
    15. “The Encounter of Mysticism and Politics in Ayatollah Khomeini’s Thought,” MOS/LUCIS Lecture Series, Leiden University School for Middle Eastern Studies & Leiden University Centre for Islamic Studies, Thu 6 Nov 2014, Leiden University.
    16. “Political Violence and the Ambivalence of the Secular: How Meaningful/Useful is a Secular vs. Religious Distinction?” in the Conference on Political Violence beyond the Secular/Religious Divide, Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and sciences, and Leiden Institute for Area Studies, 19 Sep 2014.
    17. “Predicaments and Prospects of Change in the Hybrid Societies of the Middle East: With a Special Emphasis on Iran,” Conference: Where is Iran Headed? Center for Middle Eastern Studies, Lund University, & FOI, 9-10 Jan 2014.
    18. “Justifying Political Violence beyond the Secular-Religious Bifurcation” Living in Violent Times, Humanities Research Centre, Durham University, Apr 19, 2013.
    19. “Hafez and the Art of Calligraphy,” Leiden Institute for Area Studies, 21 September 2012.
    20. “A Critical Rational Review of the Correspondence between Ibn Sina and Farabi” delivered in the conference Prince of Physicians: The Legacy of Avicenna in the Islamic World and the West, Leiden University Centre for the Study of Islam and Society, January, 16, 2002.
    21. “‘Westoxification' in Reverse: A Framework for an Intellectual History of Post-Revolutionary Iran,” delivered in the SMES/LUCIS Lecture Series, Leiden University, December 1, 2011.
    22. “Westoxification in Reverse: Post-revolutionary Politics in Iran” delivered in Wright Lecture Series, Department of Middle Eastern Studies, Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies, University of Cambridge, November, 24, 2011.
    23. “Political Change and the Politics of Small Things” Centre for Governance and Human Rights, Department of Political Science studies, University of Cambridge, November 7, 2011.
    24. “Politics of Small Things: How people are changing the politics through their everyday lives in Iran” University of Amsterdam, October 13, 2010, Department of Political Science, University of Amsterdam.
    25. “Fiqh and the Politics of Violence: From Discursive Indifference to Discursive Legitimisation (With Special Emphasis on the Post-Revolutionary Developments of Politicised Shi’i Fiqh), Conference on Religion and Violence, University of Exeter, September 2010.
    26. “Muslim Modern Thinkers and Social Change: Necessity of a Paradigmatic Shift (with Special Emphasis on Human Rights),” Conference on Muslim Modern Thought: Hermeneutics and Change, Isfahan university of Technology, 17th of Dec. 2007.
    27. “From Universalism to Universality: Prospects of a Paradigm Shift,” ESF-LiU Conference Human Dignity: From Cultural Traditions to a New Paradigm in Wadstena, Sweden, 31st of Oct. to 4th of Nov. 2007.
    28. “Human Rights as Fairness” in the Fourth International Mofid Conference on Human Rights and Religion, Center for Human Rights Studies, Qom, Iran, 16-17 May 2007;
    29. “Why, Which and How Human Rights Do Matter in an Era of Multiculturalism?” in the workshop From Monologue to Dialogue: International Relations and Human Rights, University of Amsterdam (UvA), 28 March 2007;
    30. “A Cultural Approach towards Democracy and Human Rights in Iran,” Summer Academy: “Islam and the Repositioning of Religion,” Kulturwissenschaftliches Institut, Essen, 16-30 July 2006.
    31. “Archetypes of Liminality: Cultural Patterns of Apostasy, Heresy, and Conversion in the Monotheistic Milieu,” Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin, 22 to 25 April 2004;
    32. “Iranian Modern Religious Intellectuals between Theory and Practice,” The 10th DAVO Congress; 20th – 22nd December, Hamburg, 2003.
    33. “Comparative Interdisciplinary Study on Hermeneutical Criteria of Distinguishing between Core and Margin in Mystical-Experience-Oriented Interpretation of the Holy Qur’an”: Summer Academy, Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin, “Jewish and Islamic Hermeneutics as Cultural Critique,” Berlin, 3-13 Aug 2003.
    34. “Three Readings of the Relations between Islam and Human Rights,” UNESCO, UNDP, International Centre for Dialogue Among Civilizations, Mofid University, Biannual Conference on Religion and Human Rights, Qom, 2003.
    35. “Theoretical Foundations of Educational Reform in Iran,” International Conference on Educational Reform in Iran, Iranian Ministry of Education, Research Institute for Education, Tehran, 2001.
    36. “Critical Rationality as a Moral Choice: Curriculum and Rational Character Training,” Curriculum and Rational Character Training, Iranian Curriculum Planning Association, Tehran, 29 Jan 2002.
PhD Mohammad Mahdi Mojahedi
Raum 101
Zwätzengasse 4
07743 Jena
Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena
Institut für Orientalistik, Indogermanistik, Ur- und Frühgeschichtliche Archäologie
Seminar für Orientalistik
Zwätzengasse 4
07743 Jena