The reign of the last Shah of Iran, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi (1941–79), marked the high point of Iran’s global interconnectedness. Never before had Iranians felt the impact of global political, social, economic, and cultural forces so intimately in their national and daily lives, nor had Iranian actors played such an important global role – on battlefields, barricades, and in board rooms far beyond Iran’s borders. Iranian intellectuals, technocrats, politicians, workers, artists, and students alike were influenced by the global ideas, movements, markets, and conflicts that they also helped to shape. From the launch of the Shah’s White Revolution in 1963 to his overthrow in the popular revolution of 1978–79, Iran saw the longest period of sustained economic growth that the country had ever experienced. An entire generation took its cue from the shift from oil consumption to oil production to dream of, and aspire to, a modernized Iran, and the history of Iran in this period has tended to be presented as a prologue to the revolution. Those histories usually locate the political, social, and cultural origins of the revolution firmly within a national context, into which global actors intruded as Iranian actors retreated. While engaging with that national narrative, this volume is concerned with Iran’s place in the global history of the 1960s and ’70s. It examines and highlights the transnational threads that connected Pahlavi Iran to the world, from global traffic in modern art and narcotics to the embrace of American social science by Iranian technocrats and the encounter of European intellectuals with the Iranian Revolution. In doing so, this book seeks to fully incorporate Pahlavi Iran into the global history of the 1960s and ’70s, when Iran mattered far beyond its borders.
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About the Author
Roham Alvandi is Associate Professor of International History at the London School of Economics and Political Science and the author of Nixon, Kissinger, and the Shah: The United States and Iran in the Cold War.
Table of Contents
Introduction: Iran in the Age of Aryamehr Roham Alvandi 1
1 Domesticating Cold War Economic Ideas: The Rise of Iranian Developmentalism in the 1950s and 1960s Ramin Nassehi 35
2 The Opium of the State: Local and Global Drug Prohibition in Iran, 1941-1979 Maziyar Ghiabi 70
3 Pahlavi Iran on the Global Stage- The Shah's 1971 Persepolis Celebrations Robert Steele 110
4 A Cosmopolitan Dandy: Amir Abbas Hoveyda H. E. Chehabi 147
5 The Shiraz Festival and its Place in Iran's Revolutionary Mythology H. E. Chehabi 168
6 Nation Branding: The Prospect of Collecting Modern and Contemporary Art in Pahlavi Iran Samine Tabatabaei 202
7 'Anti-Imperialism of Fools'? The European Intellectual Left and The Iranian Revolution Claudia Castiglioni 220
8 Iran's Global Long 1970s: An Empire Project, Civilisational Developmentalism, and the Crisis of the Global North Cyrus Schayegh 260