Home>The facts about Fariba Adelkhah
The facts about Fariba Adelkhah
Last updated on 19/10/2023
Fariba Adelkhah is free and back in France
Sciences Po is relieved to announce the return to France of Fariba Adelkhah, a Franco-Iranian researcher at Sciences Po’s Centre for international studies (CERI). She was detained in Iran from June 2019 to February 2023.
A recognised specialist in Shiism and post-revolutionary Iran, Fariba Adelkhah was sentenced in May 2020 to five years' imprisonment. Since then, the Sciences Po communities have relentlessly called for her release.
On Tuesday 17 October 2023, Fariba Adelkhah finally returned to France. On her arrival at the airport, she was greeted by Béatrice Hibou, president of her support committee, and Mathias Vicherat, director of Sciences Po.
"After she has been deprived of her freedom for so long, what a thrill it is to welcome back our colleague Fariba, a symbol of our battle for academic freedom! I solemnly thank the French authorities for their unremitting action, the support committee and all those who worked for her release. I look forward to seeing Fariba back at Sciences Po, her home, soon."
Mathias Vicherat - Director of Sciences Po.
Informations and FAQ
Who is Fariba Adelkhah?
Fariba Adelkhah was born in Teheran in 1959, her family comes from the Iranian province of Khorassan (a region that fronts the border with Afghanistan). She came to France in 1977 to pursue her university education, first at the University of Strasbourg and then at the School of Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences (EHESS). A specialist in social anthropology and the political anthropology of post-revolutionary Iran, Adelkhah has been a researcher at the Centre for International Research since 1993. Her early work considered the position of women in the Islamic Revolution, culminating in her first publication, Revolution under the Veil: Islamic Women of Iran (French edition, Karthala, 1991). She then edited several issues of scientific journals and published — in addition to numerous articles, studies and chapters in collective works, and information books intended for a non-university audience — two major anthropology works devoted to Iran that are now considered as classics of the discipline: Being modern in Iran (The CERI Series in Comparative Politics and International Studies, London : Hurst & Company, 2000) and The thousand and one borders of Iran: Travel and Identity (Iranian Studies, London: Routledge, 2015). Her main works have been translated into various languages, including English.
Her current research examines the movement of Shia clerics between Afghanistan, Iran, and Iraq. A researcher of the field, renowned and respected among peers internationally, Fariba Adelkhah is a member of various academic committees and of the journals, Iranian Studies and Revue des mondes musulmans de la Méditerranée.
Adelkhah possesses dual nationality, Iranian and French.
Who is Roland Marchal?
Roland Marchal is a sociologist with the French Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) and he has worked as a researcher at the Centre for International Studies of Sciences Po (CERI) since 1997. Roland is one of the most internationally renowned specialists on Somalia, but also on the Horn of Africa, Chad, Central African Republic and Mali. Roland also addressed theories of the “failed state”, especially drawing on his research in Somalia.
He was, with the late Christine Messiant, among the first few to criticize the reductionism of economic theories about civil wars in two groundbreaking papers published in the journal Critique internationale. Their common research, published as Les Chemins de la guerre et de la paix. Fins de conflit en Afrique orientale et australe (Karthala, 1997), demonstrated how civil wars in Sub-saharan Africa and beyond are intimately interrelated to the fabric of the state. This thinking was also the central thesis of the seminal book he co-edited with Pierre Hassner: Guerres et sociétés. Etats et violence après la Guerre froide (Karthala, 2003).
After spending over nine months as an academic prisoner in Iran, Roland Marchal was released from Evin prison and returned to France on March 21, 2020.