Identity, Sexuality and culture, Visual storytelling, Alternative rationalities, Ethnography, Visual anthropology, Indigenous religions, Shamanism, Magic and Spirit Possession

I completed my master’s and bachelor’s degrees in social anthropology from Tehran University. During my studies, I have been working as an ethnographer with various organizations and NGOs to empower locals, especially women, and assist them in establishing an alternative livelihood. In 2010, I started doing fieldwork with a private anthropology institute in Tehran, focusing on traditional medicine in south Iran which later became the subject of my Ph.D. thesis.

The focus of my doctoral thesis was on the “Zar ritual as an expression of gender identity in the Hormozgan province of Iran.” Zar is a community-based activity that is used to treat people who are considered to be possessed. In my research, after classifying the Zar participants, I explored different reasons which lead them to the Zar ritual and how this participation affects their individual and social identity.

Now after finishing my Ph.D. studies, I would like to expand my doctoral research question to a more general one and explore what makes similar rituals and practices legitimate in the Middle East specifically in the Persian Gulf area as well as why people prefer them over other official religions and beliefs.

“MirroringValues in Possession Ritual: A Biographic-Narrative Study of Female Participants in the Zr Ritual in the Hormozgan Province of Iran” in: The Shamanese at the threshold: gender, religion, and the state in Asia.

“Crisis, recovery, and gender identity in Iranian female participants of the Zar ritual”, in: SHAMAN (Journal of the International Society for Academic Research on Shamanism), Vol. 27, No: 1-2.P: 5-2.

Research Project at CAS-E