March 15, 2006

Former Iranian ambassador to speak on campus

Photo Mansour Farhang

Mansour Farhang

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Mansour Farhang, Iran’s first ambassador to the United Nations and former advisor to the Iranian foreign minister, will present a lecture on “Behavioral Impediments to the Development of Democracy in the Middle East,” from 1:30 to 3 p.m. on March 23 in the University Union’s Hinde Auditorium.

Farhang is a professor of international relations and Middle Eastern politics at Bennington College in Vermont. In the 1970s Farhang taught in the Government Department at Sacramento State. He then became an advisor to the Iranian foreign ministry and ambassador to the United Nations, following the 1979 revolution in Iran. During the Iran-Iraq war, he worked with international mediators and wrote and spoke about the threat of religious extremists. In June 1981, following the violent suppression of political dissidents, he was forced to leave Iran and returned to the United States to become a research fellow and lecturer at Princeton University.

He is the author of two books and dozens of articles, in English and Persian, published in both academic journals and popular periodicals. His opinion pieces have appeared in a variety of newspapers, including The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post, and The Christian Science Monitor. His third book, A Theology in Power: The Iranian Revolution is near completion. Currently, he serves on the advisory board of Human Rights Watch/Middle East and has also been a participant in the seminars of Council on Foreign Relations and Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

He has appeared as a guest on numerous radio and television programs, including PBS “News Hour”, ABC’s “Night Line”, “Bill Moyer’s Journal”, “60 Minutes”, CBS’s “Face the Nation” and CNN.

The lecture is hosted by Sacramento State’s Center for Iranian and Middle Eastern Studies, which was recently established to examine the economic and cultural contributions of immigrants from the Middle East to the Sacramento Region.

For more information call Carolann Forseth at (916) 278-6202 and for media assistance contact the Public Affairs office at (916) 278-6156.

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