About the Institute

About the Institute

The root of the Institute of Islamic Studies (IIS) goes back to the establishment of the Institute of Islamic Studies at the University of McGill (Canada) in 1952. Professor Mehdi Mohaghegh who had taught at McGill University for over a decade, proposed the establishment of IIS, Tehran Branch, in collaboration with the University of Tehran. Consequently, it was officially inaugurated at University of Tehran on January 4, 1968.

One aspect of the activities of IIS has been the ongoing lecture series and graduate courses taught by well-known and distinguished scholars such as Professors Richard Walzer who discussed The Ideal City of Farabi for six weeks; Abdul Rahman Badavi lectured on Plato in Islam; Montgomery Watt lectured about his two books Muhammed at Mecca and Muhammed at Medina; Louis Gardet delivered a lecture on the “Comparison of Islam and Christianity”; Khalil Jeorr lectured on “Logic in Islam”; and Ma’n Ziadah introduced his book entitled Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Mohammed Meshkat and S.H. Nasr have given lectures on Ghurar al-farāʼid in Hādī ibn Mahdī Sabzavārī's Sharh al-manzūmah fī al-hikmah and Ta‛liqah bar sharh-i manzumah by M. Mahdi Ashtiyani. The present writer also taught Zad al-Musafirin by Nasir Khosraw; Sharh-i Bab-i Hadi Ashr; and Maqamat of Hariri in prose literature and Hamasah by Abu Tammam in poetry. Furthermore, IIS has acquired a sizeable collection of books, periodicals, manuscripts, photocopies, microfilms, off-prints, and other materials in various formats. Its holdings include some of the most important sources of reference in the realm of the Iranian – Islamic intellectual heritage.

The collaboration of IIS (University of Tehran-University of McGill) with Iranian and foreign scholars, universities and institutions in such disparate and vast areas of thought is a unique experience, which will undoubtedly strengthen international cultural ties and lead to a better understanding of different cultures and civilization. Publication of academic books and researches written by the scholars and professors at IIS or by scholars around the world has been another continuous activity of the Institute. The Institute of Islamic Studies in collaboration with Professors Mohaghegh, Izutsu and Landolt has published a series of philosophical works written by Iranian thinkers entitled Wisdom of Persia (includes original Persian and Arabic texts with English or French translations or introductions). In addition to Wisdom of Persia, IIS has also published forty works under a new series bearing the title of Cordoba and Isfahan, launched a new series of publications entitled History of Science in Islam, and published forty books in a series entitled Persian Language and Literature as well.