The Conception of Culture, Values and Identity of Iran in Shaykh Fazlallah Nuri's Writings




Islam, Constitutional Revolution, Iran, Nuri Fazlallah


The aim of this analysis of Nuri’s writings is the creation of a model of culture which is based on the semantics of the notions qanun, eslam, mosvat, horriyat, mashrute/mashru'e, qanun-e asasi. Investigations into the model of culture proposed by Nuri will allow us to distinguish its specific features and to discover its roots and condition at the time of confrontation with an alternative model. The word qanun ‘law’ is the central one in Nuri’s texts of the mashrute period. The history of its semantic transformation has its roots in the 1850s and the first contacts of the Iranian people with the West. Nuri inquired as to the semantics of the notions of qanun, mosavat, horriyat (azadi) and mashrute in discussions during the time of bast in Abdolazim mosque and in the conversations with representatives of the British embassy. He acted against these elements of law. He regarded himself as a religious leader for his community which, as a whole, constituted God’s people whose final purpose was salvation.


Primary sources:

al-e Ahmad J., Weststruckness (Qharbzadegi), Tehran 1341 (1963).

Fazlallah N., Resa'el, elamiye-ha, maktubat, . . . va ruzname-ye Sheykh Shahid Fazlallah Nuri, ed. by M. Torkeman, Tehran 1983.

Fazlallah N., Maktubat, elamiye-ha, . . . va chand gozaresh-e piramun-e naqsh, ed. by M. Torkeman, Tehran 1984.

Hairi A.H., “Shaykh Fazl Allah Nuri’s Refutation of the Idea of Constitutionalism”, Middle Eastern Studies, XXIII.3 (1977), pp. 327–339.

Mirza Malkam Khan, Qanun, ed. by H. Nateq, Tehran 1976.

Mirza Jusuf Khan Tabrizi Mostashar ad-Dowle, Resale mowsum be yek kaleme, ed. by A.R. Dowlatshahi, Tehran 2007.

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Adamiyat F., Ideologi-ye nohzat-e mashrutiyat-e Iran, Tehran 1355 (1976).

Afary J., The Iranian Constitutional Revolution 1906–1911, Columbia 2005.

Browne E., The Persian Revolution of 1905–1909, Cambridge 1910.

Kasravi A., Tarikh-e mashrute, Tehran 1346 (1967).

Kermani N. al-E., Tarikh-e bidari-ye Iran, Tehran 1357 (1978).

Mo’ameni B., Din va doulat dar asr-e mashrutiyat, Stockholm 1998.

Ridgeon L. (ed.), Religion and Politics in Modern Iran, London – New York 2005.

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Salehi N., Andishe-ye tajaddod va taraqqi dar asr-e bahran, Teheran 1387 (2008).




How to Cite

Abassy, M. (2017). The Conception of Culture, Values and Identity of Iran in Shaykh Fazlallah Nuri’s Writings. Intercultural Relations, 1(2(2), 151–163.