Since the Iranian Revolution of 1979, the close alliance between Syria and Iran has endured for over three decades, based on geopolitical interests between the two states and often framed in the language of resistance. In view of their strong relationship at a state-level, what have Syria and Iran each been doing to foster popular exchange and employ cultural tools to build an image in the other country? The Syria-Iran Axis examines the motivations, content and reach of cultural diplomacy between Syria and Iran to determine to what degree the two partners have been successful in bridging their world views and political outlooks. By analysing the extent to which a state-directed cultural exchange can foster bilateral relations in the Middle East, Nadia von Maltzahn offers a unique analysis of the formation of foreign policy and diplomacy in the region.
About the Author
Nadia von Maltzahn holds a DPhil in Middle Eastern Studies from St Antony's College, University of Oxford, UK. She is currently based in Beirut.
Table of ContentsIntroduction: The Role of Culture in Foreign Policy
Chapter 1: Historical Backdrop: An Overview of Syrian-Iranian Relations
Chapter 2: Policy and Values
Chapter 3: Pre-1979 Cultural Diplomacy and Post-1979 Foundations
Chapter 4: Iran's Cultural Diplomacy in Syria
Chapter 5: Syria's Cultural Diplomacy in Iran
Chapter 6: Students: Fostering the Bonds of the Future?
Chapter 7: Religious Tourism: The Blessedness of Cultural Ties?
Conclusion: Cultural Diplomacy, Soft Power and the Syria-Iran Axis