Keywords: Nasir Khusraw, Safarnama, Iranian Studies, Islamic Studies, Ismaili Studies, Shi‘i Studies, Central Asia, philosophy, Yumgan, Badakhshan, Khurasan, da‘wa, literature, poetry, travelogue, Fatimids.
Abstract: One of the foremost poets of the Persian language and a major contributor to Ismaili thought, Nasir Khusraw has attracted passionate attention, from admirers and critics alike, for nearly a thousand years. Celebrated for a poetry that combines art with philosophy, trusted for the details of his travels throughout the Middle East, revered and criticised for his theological texts, Nasir Khusraw remains one of the most fascinating figures in Islamic history and literature. This article provides an introduction to his life, travels and writing as well as his role as an Ismaili da'i in Khurasan.
Dr Hunsberger received her doctorate in Middle East Languages and Cultures from Columbia University in 1992, specialising in Persian and Arabic literatures. She has taught courses dealing with aspects of Islam as well as on the history of science at various universities in Iran and the USA, including Arya Mehr University of Technology in Isfahan, Iran and Hunter College, The City University of New York. Dr Hunsberger is the author of Nasir Khusraw, The Ruby of Badakhshan: A Portrait of the Persian Poet, Traveller and Scholar (London, 2000), and has contributed numerous papers to academic conferences and journals. Dr Hunsberger was a Visiting Research Fellow at The Institute of Ismaili Studies from 1999-2001.