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On the margins of minority life: Zoroastrians and the state in Safavid Iran

Kioumars Ghereghlou

Title:
On the margins of minority life: Zoroastrians and the state in Safavid Iran
Author(s):
Ghereghlou, Kioumars
Date:
Type:
Articles
Department(s):
Center for Iranian Studies
Persistent URL:
Book/Journal Title:
Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies
Geographic Area:
Middle East
Iran--Kirmān
Iran--Iṣfahān
Iran--Yazd
Abstract:
This article looks at the treatment of the Zoroastrians by central and provincial authorities in early modern Yazd, Kirman and Isfahan, emphasizing the institutional weaknesses of the central or khāsṣạ protection they were supposed to benefit from under the Safavids (907–1135/1501– 1722). It is argued that the maltreatment the Zoroastrians endured under the Safavids had little to do with religious bigotry. Rather, it arose from rivalries between the central and the provincial services of the Safavid bureaucracy, putting Zoroastrians in Yazd, Kirman, Sistan and Isfahan at risk of over-taxation, extortion, forced labour and religious persecution. The argument developed in this article pivots on the material interest of the central and the provincial agents of the Safavid bureaucracy in the revenue and labour potentials of the Zoroastrians, and the way in which the conflict of interest between these two sectors led to such acts of persecution as over-taxation, forced labour, extortion and violence
Subject(s):
Religious minorities
Persecution
Zoroastrians
History
Publisher DOI:
https://doi.org/10.1017/S0041977X17000015
Item views
128
Metadata:
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Suggested Citation:
Kioumars Ghereghlou, , On the margins of minority life: Zoroastrians and the state in Safavid Iran, Columbia University Academic Commons, .

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