Events & News | Perso-Indica


20 August 2018 - Event
University of Göttingen

Summer School: Reading and analysing Indo-Persian documents

33_1_Call for applications.pdf


Call for applications

Summer School

Reading and analysing Indo-Persian documents

Göttingen, 20.8.-31.8.2018

The Seminary for Iranian Studies at the University of Göttingen organises a summer school devoted to reading and analysing Indo-Persian documents.

During the two-week programme we will introduce young researchers (mostly PhD candidates and postdoc researchers, but MA candidates may also apply) to ways of reading and analysing Indo-Persian documents. The summer school aims at training the scholars in identifying different types of documents, at deciphering not only texts written in Nastaliq, but also in Shekasta, at reading seals and stamps and at getting basic knowledge about typical terminology and abbreviations. The documents will all be in Persian, but sometimes interspersed with local terms. Special consideration will therefore be paid to the Indian environment and the particular vocabulary used there. The course will also provide information about basic research tools and the archival situation in India.

Indo-Persian documentary sources are available in vast quantities in Indian archives and provide unique information on economic, social, political and religious issues of the Subcontinent. They still remain poorly understudied and are much less taken into consideration than narrative sources like especially historiographies and chronicles. We observe that working on archival material in India poses three challenges to young researchers: first of all, students of Persian or Iranian Studies often restrict themselves to sources from Iran and do not pay attention to the huge amount of Indo-Persian material they often feel unfamiliar with. Second, the archival situation in India is not so promising, with many collections still uncatalogued and difficult to access. Third, the reading and deciphering of these documents present many problems difficult to solve on one’s own, especially when they are written in Shekasta.

Our goal is to encourage researchers in tackling these challenges by guiding them through the initial steps in working with such texts. Large space will be provided for working together on documentary material. The participants will however also have to work on documents on their own in the afternoons to apply the acquired new skills and to enhance their competence in deciphering unknown texts step by step.

Learning how to deal with archival material will need more than a two-weeks summer school. We therefore plan further activities in the future.

Programme: the workshop comprises 4hrs/day of teaching. The afternoon is reserved for homework and exercises.

Costs: the course fee is 150 €. The fee has to be paid after acceptance for the course until April 20th.

Requirements: we accept PhD and postdoc students as well as MA students with a good knowledge of Persian. They should be familiar with pre-modern Persian, too.

The language of instruction will be English, fluency in English is therefore also required.

Application. in order to be considered, the applications must include:

A curriculum vitae, mentioning language skills

Proof of sufficient knowledge of Persian

The number of participants is limited to 20.

Housing: There are no opportunities to accommodate the participants at the campus, but since the summerschool takes place during the term break, there are many affordable offers to rent a room or apartment in Göttingen for 2 weeks.


The applications must be submitted before April 1st  2018.

The spring school will take place from August 20th to August 31st 2018. Arrival day in Göttingen is August 19th, departure if foreseen for the afternoon of August  31st earliest.

Preliminary list of instructors: Chander Shekhar (Delhi University), Saqib Baburi (British Library), Hamidreza Ghelichkhani (Teheran), Eva Orthmann (Göttingen University), Anna Kollatz (Bonn University)


Location and info

Location: The summer school will take place at Göttingen University, Germany.

Contact: Ali Balaielangroudi, Seminar für Iranistik, Georg-August-Universität Göttingen, Heinrich-Düker-Weg 14, 37073 Göttingen, e-Mail: