The Royal Lens: Naser Al-Din Shah’s Photography of His Harem (Visual Studies of Modern Iran)

The Royal Lens: Naser Al-Din Shah’s Photography of His Harem (Visual Studies of Modern Iran)

By Pedram Khosronejad 2018

Khosronejad’s unique collection provides us with a treasure trove of images focusing on the daily life of Naser al-Din Shah, his wives, concubines, and slaves of both sexes.

Janet Afary

Mellichamp Professor of Religious Studies

UC Santa Barbara

Pedram Khosronejad has provided invaluable new information about the history of photography in Iran during the 19th-century Qajar period. In particular he has carefully researched the photographs taken by Naser al-Din Shah, perhaps the Qajar monarch most fascinated by Western technology. These intimate photographs of his own harem are unique and highly informative, not just for their intrinsic value in a period in which human images were disapproved of, but also for what they reveal about Naser al-Din Shah, his self-image, his household and his court.

William O. Beeman
Professor, Department of Anthropology
University of Minnesota

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