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posted Mar 17, 2011, 11:37 AM by Dan Sheffield   [ updated Mar 17, 2011, 3:44 PM ]

Welcome to my website. There’s a lot of work to do, but I hope that this site will give you some idea of my work. More importantly, I hope that the resources on this website will be useful to anyone interested in Zoroastrian studies. Let me tell you a bit about two of the projects I’m developing on this site.

First, I’ve been working on a bibliographical survey for works written by Zoroastrian authors. Remarkably few in-depth surveys of Zoroastrian literature have been undertaken, and only a small handful have even briefly medieval and modern literature. Instead, scholars-in-training have to obtain bibliographical knowledge piecemeal, through well-worn scans of photocopies of photocopies (sometimes stretching back through generations of scholars). I intend this to encompass Zoroastrian literature in its broadest sense, from the Avesta to 21st century Persian and Gujarati literature. Since Persian and Gujarati literature are paradoxically the largest corpora yet also the least known, I have begun developing these guides first and hope to be able to offer a guide soon.

Second, as some of my scholarly friends know, I have been on something of a quest to increase awareness about Zoroastrian Gujarati literature. Though literally thousands of books have been written by Parsis in Gujarati, this huge body of literature, much of which bears directly on other areas of Zoroastrian Studies, received virtually no scholarly attention over the course of the last century. To help rectify this problem, I have been working on a Parsi Gujarati Reader – graded excerpts from longer with glossaries and grammatical commentaries both to expose the interested student to the great variety that exists in Gujarati and to help them gain a working understanding of the language. It will be a long process before the course is usable by students with no prior experience, but for now, with the assumption of a basic knowledge of the language such as that gained through a book like Teach Yourself Gujarati, I have already put up one lesson and hope to add a lesson to the site every week.

So, with the great Ardeshir Darashah Seth from Duḥkhī Dādībā, let me welcome you to my “home,” and hope that you’ll visit again and again. سلام & સાહેબજી!