Main content start

Shahrokh Meskoob Archive

Shahrokh Meskoob leaning over a balcony in 1950

Shahrokh Meskoob was an Iranian writer and intellectual, who was born in Babol, on the Caspian coast, in 1924 and died in Paris in 2005. Imprisoned in the mid-1950s for leftist activities, he was forced to leave the country following the Islamic Revolution of 1979, after publishing two critical articles in the Ayandegan newspaper in Tehran.

Meskoob's papers, one of modern Iran’s most respected and acclaimed public intellectuals, literary critics, memoirists, and Shahnameh scholar and commentator, were donated to Stanford in 2021. The collection includes hundreds of letters from some of Iran's most prominent intellectuals, thousands of pages of notes, and first drafts of many of his manuscripts.

Explore digitized material


book cover: A Scholar for Our Times

Publication: A Scholar for Our Times

Based on material in the Meskoob archive at Stanford, this book explores Shahrokh Meskoob’s literary analysis of the Shahnameh and the poetry of Hafez, and his book Iranian National Identity and the Persian Language, all translated into English, and how they demonstrate his view that national identity meant cultural identity and that modernity in Iran should be based upon an understanding of the best of Iranian culture.

This book celebrates Meskoob’s life and work in eight essays by prominent Iranian scholars and in a selection of facsimiles of his papers, now archived at Stanford University. Edited by Abbas Milani and C. Ryan Perkins, with essays by: Hassan Kamshad, Ahmad Meskoob, Gita Ostovani, Ali Banuazizi, Bahram Beyzaie, Reza Farokhfal, M.R. Ghanoonparvar, Sorour Kasmai, and Abbas Milani.