Close-up picture of purple flowers

Hajar Ghorbani

Anthropology, University of Alberta, Canada

I am a Ph.D. student in the field of sociocultural anthropology at the University of Alberta, where I am honoured to hold the prestigious Killam Scholar designation. My academic journey has led me to specialize in the nuanced realm of death studies within the context of Iran. My interests are space and place, art studies, rituals, and material culture. Over the period of six years, I conducted extensive fieldwork in Iran. My research is bifurcated into two primary areas of inquiry: The Modernization of Death and The Politicization of Death in Iran. I published a seminal edited volume titled Social Studies of Death in Iran which notably marked the first book dedicated to the subject of death and dying in Iran. In my role as Iran’s ambassador at the Association for the Study of Death and Society (ASDS), I’ve endeavoured to elevate the discourse surrounding the topic of death in Iran onto the global stage, particularly within Western academic circles. Furthermore, I’ve had the privilege of delivering keynote speeches, including a presentation on ‘The Institutionalization of Death in Iran,’ at the Centre for Death and Society at the University of Bath, UK. Currently, as I diligently work towards the completion of my Ph.D., I am passionately exploring the agency of dead bodies.

Bayatrizi, Z. & Ghorbani, H. (2019) ‘The bureaucratic professionalization of funeral rites in Tehran’s Behesht-e Zahra cemetery’, in H. Selin & R. Rackoff (eds) Death and Dying in Non-Western Cultures, Amsterdam: Springer, 103-118.

Ghorbani, H. (ed.) Social Studies of Death: Death in Iranian Culture and Society, Tehran: Anthropology [in Persian].

Ghorbani, H. (forthcoming) ‘Governing the dead’s territory: the politicization of death in Iran’, in K. Woodthorpe, H. Frisby and B. Michael-Fox (eds) Death and Institutions, Bristol: Policy Press.

Further publications

Search the bibliography for other publications by these scholars