Professor Ali Asani is Murray A. Albertson Professor of Middle Eastern Studies and Professor of Indo-Muslim and Islamic Religion and Cultures at Harvard University He has served as the Chair of the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations and Director of the Prince Alwaleed Islamic Studies Program. A specialist on Ismaili and Sufi traditions in South Asia, he teaches a variety of courses on Islam, including Ismaili History and Thought. He is the author of many articles and several books, including Celebrating Muhammad: Muslim Devotional Poetry in Praise of the Prophet; The Harvard Collection of Ismaili Literatures in Indic Languages: A Descriptive Catalog and Finding Aid; and Ecstasy and Enlightenment: Ismaili Devotional Literatures of South Asia.
Professor Asani has been engaged in promoting literacy about Islam and Muslim cultures in various educational and public forums. He serves on the advisory board of the Religious Literacy Project and the Pluralism Project at Harvard. He has been a member of the American Academy of Religion's Task Force on the teaching of religion in schools and a consultant for the National Endowment for the Humanities Bridging Cultures Muslim Journeys Bookshelf Project. He is the recipient of the Harvard Foundation medal for his contributions to improving intercultural and race relations, the Petra C. Shattuck prize for outstanding teaching, the 2020 Harvard Foundation Faculty of the Year Award, and the award for excellence in teaching from Harvard's Alpha Iota chapter of Phi Beta Kappa.