LEIDEN CENTRAL ASIA READING GROUPS

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Welcome to the website of the Central Asia Reading Group at Leiden University!

Pre-Modern Central Asia Reading Group

Our Pre-Modern Central Asia Reading Group meetings are normally held every two weeks on Tuesdays from 13:00-15:00. Their purpose is to discuss articles we have read beforehand. Often these are led by a chief discussant, who presents a small lecture on the topic or a closely related topic in order to stimulate discussion.

This part of our site is still under construction, so check in again soon for more information!

Chaghatay Reading Group

Our Chaghatay Reading Group meets every Friday in Matthias de Vrieshof 2, room 0.01 from 11:00-13:00. It is currently led by LIAS PhD Candidate, Nicholas KONTOVAS.

Nicholas KONTOVAS

Nicholas KONTOVAS is a PhD Candidate in the Leiden Institute for Area Studies at Leiden University. His areas of specialization include Turkic languages, Iranic languages, language contact and evolution, historical linguistics, and morphology.

As of its inception in Spring 2018, the group presumes knowledge of Persian, but no prior knowledge of Chaghatay or any other Turkic language. Sessions will begin with a discussion of orthography and grammar through short, artificial readings and gradually progress towards the reading of exemplary texts -- first printed, then through manuscript facsimiles.

Upcoming Session

The Chaghatay Reading Group is currently on a brief summer break. It will resume again after the first week in June with a session on Skype, the date and time of which are TBA.

Past Sessions

25 May 2018

Topics: verbal adverbs (impersonal); Baburnama

Grammar:

Reading:

Vocab:

24 April 2018, 11:00-13:00, Vrieshof 4 room 1.18a (NB: change of date, time, and venue!)

Topics: primary postpositions; aorist; Baburnama

Reading:

  • Try to make it through the first page and a half to two pages of this printed copy of the Baburnama. There will be things you don't understand, but much of the text should be comprehensible with the aid of last week's grammar reference sheet and the vocabulary provided below.

Vocab:

6 April 2018

Topics: accusative case

Vocabulary:

Assignment:

28 March 2018, 9:00-13:00, Vrieshof 4 room 1.18a (NB: change of date and location!)

Topics: simple past verbs

Grammar:

Vocabulary:

Assignment:

23 March 2018

Topics: ablative case; dative case; present-future

Vocabulary:

16 March 2018

Topics: locative case; existence; the concept of `having'

Materials:

5 March 2018

Topics: genitive case (cont.); possessive endings (cont.); the concept of `having'; dictionaries and reference resources

Assignment(s):

  • Using the materials provided for last session, try to transcribe and translate this short text.
  • Review the vocabulary from week 1 and week 2.

26 February 2018

Topics: periodization of Chaghatay; genitive case; possessive endings; vowel harmony

Assignment(s):

19 February 2018

Topics: What is Chaghatay?; the Turkic languages; writing system; pronunciation; present tense copula; nominative personal pronouns

Classical Persian Reading Group

Our Classical Persian Reading Group meets every Friday morning in Matthias de Vrieshof 2, room 0.01 from 9:00-11:00. It is currently led by LIAS PhD Candidate, Sara MIRAHMADI.

Sara MIRAHMADI

Sara MIRAHMADI is a PhD Candidate in the Leiden Institute for Area Studies at Leiden University. Her areas of specialization include Iran in the Middle Ages, ancient Iran, and Persian language and literature.

The group presumes good reading knowledge of Persian. Primary sources in printed transcription are selected so as to display a wide variety of archaic and literary grammatical and idiomatic conventions. Emphasis is on prose.

Upcoming Session

Past Sessions

25 May 2018

Topics: Zaynu l-Axbār; Qābūsnāma, c. 14

18 May 2018

Topics: Tārīx-i Bayhaqī (cont.); Zaynu l-Axbār

20 April 2018

Topics: Tārīx-i Bayhaqī (cont.)

13 April 2018

Topics: Tārīx-i Bayhaqī (cont.)

Material(s):

6 April 2018

Topics: Tārīx-i Bayhaqī (cont.)

Material(s):

28 March 2018, 9:00-13:00, Vrieshof 4 room 1.18a (NB: change of date and location!)

Topics: Tārīx-i Bayhaqī

Material(s):

16 March 2018

Topics: Tārīx-i Balʿamī (continued); classical idioms

Reading(s):

8 March 2018

Topics: Tārīx-i Balʿamī; some classical idioms

1 March 2018, 13:00 --- Note change of date/time!

Topics: introduction

About us

Leiden University is home to a thriving community of scholars working on topics related to Central Asia.

Below is a list of only some of the regular participants in our Central Asia Reading Groups, organized alphabetically by last name.

If you think your name should be on this list, please contact the webmaster of this site.

Gabrielle van den BERG

Dr. Gabrielle van den BERG is Senior University Lecturer in the Cultural History of Central Asia and Iran at Leiden University. She is also co-coordinator of the Central Asia Intiative. Her areas of specialization include Persian literature, the history of Iran and Central Asia, Ismaili oral history, and the Shahnama.

Elena PASKALEVA

Dr. Elena PASKALEVA is a University Lecturer in Critical Heritage Studies at Leiden University. She is also co-coordinator of the Central Asia Intiative. Her areas of specialization include Islamic architecture, architectural history, Timurid history, and cultural heritage.

Sara MIRAHMADI

Sara MIRAHMADI is a PhD Candidate in the Leiden Institute for Area Studies at Leiden University. Her areas of specialization include Iran in the Middle Ages, ancient Iran, and Persian language and literature.

Nicholas KONTOVAS

Nicholas KONTOVAS is a PhD Candidate in the Leiden Institute for Area Studies at Leiden University. His areas of specialization include Turkic languages, Iranic languages, language contact and evolution, historical linguistics and morphology.

Tobias JONES

Tobias JONES is a PhD Candidate in the Leiden Institute for Area Studies at Leiden University. His areas of specialization include Mongol history, history of Iran and Central Asia, the Pax Mongolica, and Persian historiography.