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Professor Roja Fazaeli, Assistant Professor in Islamic Civilisation(s)

My Ph.D. thesis was a comparative study of Islamic law and international human rights law concerning women in the Shi'a tradition and was funded by the Irish Research Council for Humanities and Social Sciences. I have published numerous papers and book chapters on the topics of Islam and gender, Islamic feminism and human rights. Currently I am working on completing a monograph on a conceptualization of Islamic feminism and human rights activism in Iran. I currently supervise six Ph.D./M.Litt. students and their topics range from Islamic mysticism and poetry to a reinterpretation of the death penalty in Islamic law. I have contributed to M.Phil. programmes at TCD (Gender and Women's Studies and International Peace Studies) as well as to the LL.M. in International and Comparative Law.

I have been involved in a number of international projects with colleagues from the Department of Near Eastern Studies, Princeton University, from the Institute for Arabic and Islamic Studies, University of Exeter (Hawza Project funded by the British Society for Middle Eastern Studies) and from Emory University where I am a global affiliate at the School of Law. I serve on the editorial board of the Journal for Religion and Human Rights. Previously I served on the boards of the Association of Persianite Studies, Irish Refugee Council and UNIFEM (UN Women) Ireland.


  • 'The Narrative of Hope and Loss: Iranian Women's Activism in Peter Admirand (ed.), Hope and Loss, 2013
  • Co-authored with Melanie Hoewer, 'Ireland's Relationship to the United Nations Regarding Rights of Women,' in Aisling O'Sullivan and William Schabas (eds.) An Archival Study of Human Rights in Ireland, 2013
  • 'Martyred Women and Humiliated Men,' in Martha Fineman and Michael Thomas, Michael (eds.), Masculinities and Feminisms: Critical Perspectives, Ashgate, 2012 (in print)
  • 'Convention on Elimination of all Forms of Discriminations Against Women,' The [Oxford] Encyclopedia of Islam and Women, Oxford University Press, 2012
  • 'International Laws and Treaties on Women's Status,' The [Oxford] Encyclopedia of Islam and Women, Oxford University Press, 2012
  • 'Mehrangiz Kar,', The [Oxford] Encyclopedia of Islam and Women, Oxford University Press, 2012
  • 'Martyrdom,' The [Oxford] Encyclopedia of Islam and Women, Oxford University Press, 2012
  • 'Mujtahida,' The [Oxford] Encyclopedia of Islam and Women, Oxford University Press, 2012
  • 'UN Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM),' The [Oxford] Encyclopedia of Islam and Women, Oxford University Press, 2012

Published Papers

  • 'In search of Iranian Feminisms: A Study of Iranian Women's Movement,' in Chitra Raghavan and James P. Levine (ed.), Women's Rights in the Changing Islamic World, New England University Press, July 2012, chapter 10
  • 'Jihad and Martyrdom in Historical Perspective: From Aisha to the Daughters of Olive,' A paper written for the Abrahamic Project, The Junction and the Irish School of Ecumenics, 2012, pp. 1-19
  • 'Islamic Reformation - Is it possible in Iran?,' Search - A Church of Ireland Journal, Vol. 35.1, Spring 2012, Article 6, pp. 1-9
  • Co-authored with Mirjam Künkler, 'Of alima, vaizes, and mujtahidas: New Opportunities for Old Role Models?' in Hilary Kalmbach, and Masooda Banoo (eds.), Women, Leadership and Mosques, Brill, 2012, pp. 127-
  • 'Family Code and Marriage laws in Iran,' in Peter Losocnzi et al (eds.) The Future of Political Theology: Religious and Theological Perspectives, Ashgate, 2011, pp. 143-159
  • 'Forward,' in Making Our Voices Heard, the Stories of Muslim Women in Ireland, National Women'sCouncil of Ireland, May 2010
  • Co-authored with Dr. Elizabeth Bucar, 'Free speech in Weblogestan? The Off-Line Consequences of On-Line Discourse, International Journal of Middle-Eastern Studies, 40:3, August 2008
  • Contemporary Iranian Feminism: Identity, Rights and Interpretations, Muslim World Journal of Human Rights, Vol. 4, Issue 1, Article 8, 2007
  • All in the Family? Islam, Women, and Human Rights: A Conference Report, Religion and Human Rights, Vol. 1, No. 3, 2006, pp. 305-310
  • Contributor to the World's Minorities and Indigenous Peoples: Afghanistan, World Directory of Minorities, Minority Rights International
  • The Developing Iranian Civil Society: Governmental or non-Governmental Organisations? Muslim Public Affairs Journal, Jan. 2006

Book Reviews

  • 'Gender Stereotyping Transnational Legal Perspectives,' by Rebecca J. Cook and Simone Cusack, International Journal of Group and Minority Rights, Vol. 19, Issue 1, Jan. 2012
  • Co-authored with Prof. Joshua Castellino, 'The Role of Islam in the Legal System of Pakistan by Martin Lau,' Religion and Human Rights, Vol. 1, No. 2, Oct, 2006, pp.197-207
  • Co-authored with Jeroen Temperman, 'Islam and the Secular State, Negotiating the Future of Sharia,' by Abdullahi Ahmed An-Naʿim, Religion and Human Rights, August 2009

Teaching Responsibilities

  • JF - Introduction to Islamic Civilisations
  • SF/JS - Islam in the Medieval Period
  • SF/JS - Islam in Europe
  • SF/JS - Contemporary Islamic Movements
  • SS - Islam and Gender

Research Profile