Research Statement

My research is cross-disciplinary and explores alternatives to objectivist theories of knowledge, which historically have served to perpetuate a range of authoritarian structures such as slavery, patriarchy, and colonialism as well as to draw sharp conceptual divisions between the humanities and technical fields. The goal of my research is to understand social conditions in which good ideas can be formed through communication of views by heterogeneous groups. An area of my studies is intercultural translation, whether between people of various nationalities, cultures, and languages or between public (in literature and journalism) and professional and expert languages in modern industrial societies. For example, I have been studying how Europeans and colonized societies have viewed each other and what scholars in humanities and technical fields understand about each other’s specialties.  I have also been studying the implications of the shifting boundaries of public, private, and professional discourse communities as effected by the dramatic rise in the use of networked digital media.  


Historic Engagements with Occidental Cultures, Religions, and Powers has just been published (October 2014) by Palgrave Macmillan. This February, Muslims and American Popular Culture, a two-volume reference set I co-edited with Anne R. Richards, was published by Praeger.  Among my other publications are “Limits of Countering Stereotypes Through the Use of Visual Rhetoric: A Study of Photographs of Iran,” in Writing the Visual: A Practical Guide for Teachers of Composition and Communication (Parlor Press, 2008). I have also published translations of modern Iranian poetry in journals such as Poetry ReviewNew LettersTampa ReviewThe Spoon River Poetry Review, and Puerto del Sol. Some of my opinion pieces have appeared in Tehran Bureau, a news site in partnership with PBS's Frontline and the Guardian of London, including a four-part piece comparing the Iranian and Tunisian revolutions.  


I presented, my works were presented, or I facilitated workshops at the following international, national, and regional conferences:

In 2014

  • With Dr. Aaron Stoller. “From Theory to Praxis: Considering the Place of Theory in Honors,” National Collegiate Honors Council (NCHC) Conference, Denver, CO.
  • With Dr. Liza Davis, Dr. Katherine Kinnick, and Dr. Ralph Rascati. “Joining Two Honors Programs into One (New) Honors College,” NCHC Conference, Denver, CO.
  • With Parviz Omidvar, “Writing ‘Living in Fear’, a Memoir,” Red Clay Writers Conference organized by Georgia Writers Association.
  • With Dr. Nadia Abid and Dr. Jeff Orr, “‘Social Media and Intercultural Practice’: A Case of the Use of Internet in an English Class for Communication” the International Symposium on Information Communication Technologies for Language Learning and Teaching, Gamarth, Tunisia. (presented by Dr. Abid).

In 2013

  • With Dr. Nadia Abid and Dr. Jeff Orr. “Blurring Boundaries of the College English Classroom: Affirming Learning Through Intercultural Practice, National Council of Teachers of English Annual Convention, Boston, MA.
  • Roundtable Discussion Facilitated with Dr. Jeff Orr, Bri Mason, and Joshual Skelton. "Status, Access, Power, and Stuff": The Relevance of Game Theory to Honors Programs," NCHC Conference, New Orleans, MO.
  • With Jeff Orr, “Blurring Boundaries of the Polytechnic and the Applied English Classroom: Affirming Learning through Intercultural Practice,” Polytechnic Summit, Wentworth Institute of Technology, Boston, MA, summer 2013.

In 2012

  • With Dr. Mani Mina. “Work in Progress: Engineering Education and Pragmatism: Imagining an Undergraduate Engineering Course Based on the Educational Philosophy of John Dewey.” Session on Engineering and Educational Philosophy, 2012 IEEE Frontiers in Education Conference, Seattle, WA.
  • Workshop co-facilitator. “Agents of Discovery: Honors Students Abroad?”  Developing in Honors Extended Discussion Session, NCHC Conference, Boston, MA.
  • With Mr. Jake Robinson. “What the Other Teaches Us: Transformative Learning in an Honors World Literature Course,” NCHC Conference, Boston, MA.
  • With Dr. Anne Richards, “Themes and Tropes in Discourse by Eastern Travelers to the West” at Multiculturalism and Intercultural Exchanges Conference at the Higher Institute of Applied Studies in Humanities of Sbeitla (ISEAHS), Sbeitla, Tunisia.
  • “Joining the Social Conversation: Participatory Journalism in the Network Society,” Student Success in Writing Conference, Savannah, Georgia.

In 2011

  • With Dr. Anne Richards, “Engaging Perspectives of ‘Others’ in Travel Writing of Easterners Journeying to the West,” The Intellectual Silk Road: Cross-Media and Cross-Cultural Adaptations, Istanbul, Turkey.
  • “Joining the Conversation in the Network Society: Project-based Citizen Journalism in the Classroom.” Conference on College Composition and Communication, Atlanta, Georgia. 
  • Workshop co-facilitator. “The Webs We Weave: Connecting and Contesting Boundaries through Participatory Acts of Composition,” Conference on College Composition and Communication, Atlanta, GA.
  • “Using Neo-Pragmatic Semiotics to Understand the Role of the Networked Digital Media in the Iranian Green Movement” Ninth Cultural Studies Association Conference in Chicago, Illinois.