Alireza Shomali

Professor of Political Science, Jane E. Ruby Chair in Humanities and Social Sciences


Knapton 201

(508) 286-3685

(508) 286-3640


Main Interests

Comparative Political Philosophy


Ph.D., M.A. Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse University

Research Interest: Comparative Political Theory

Teaching Interests

Pols 207; Classical Political Theory
Pols 227; Modern Political Theory
Pols 263; Politics of the Middle East
Pols 307; Freedom and Justice
Pols 337; Power and the State
Pols 347; Islamic Political Thought
Pols 357; Violence and Revolution
Pols 367; Politics and Religion
First Year Seminar; On Democracy
Senior Seminar; Conservative Political Thought




Politics and the Criteria of Truth. Palgrave-Macmillan Press, 2010.

Thoughtlessness and Decadence in Iran: A Sojourn in Comparative Political Theory. SUNY Press, forthcoming, April 2019.


“A Theoretical Component of Political Inegalitarianism in Perso-Islamicate Thought.” Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society, 3, 27/2 (2017): 225–254.

“Razi on Reason and Political Authority: A Study in Medieval Persian Political Thought.” Iranian Studies 49, 1 (2016): 29-56.

“The Unfolding of Unreason: J. Tabatabai’s Idea of Political Decline in Iran.” With M. Boroujerdi. Iranian Studies 48, 6 (2015): 949-966.

“Adorno’s Dialectical Realism.” With Linda M. Alcoff. Symposium: Canadian Journal of Continental Philosophy14, 2 (2010): 45-64.

Book Chapters

“The Idea of Political Hermeneutics in Farabi’s Philosophy.” Solicited for review, the edited series inContributions to Hermeneutics. Springer.

“A Gloss on the Mirrors: Reason and Sovereignty in Ibn al-Moqaffa’s Thought.” In Judaism, Christianity, and Islam; Tension, Transmission, Transformation, edited by G. Tamer. De Gruyter (forthcoming, 2019).

“Mirror for Princes.” Encyclopedia of Islam and the Muslim World. Macmillan Reference (2016).

“Razi’s Egalitarian Ideas.” Power and Identity, Studies on the Persianate World. Wydawnictwo Akademickie Dialog (2015), 135-164.

“Metaphysics, Secularism and Cosmopolitan Democracy.” With E. K. Soltani in Iranian Identity and Cosmopolitanism; Spheres of Belonging, L. Stone (ed.). London: Bloomsbury (2014), 35-48.

“On Sa`di’s Treatise on Advice to the Kings.” With M. Boroujerdi in Mirror for the Muslim Prince; Islam and Theory of Statecraft. Syracuse: Syracuse University Press (2013), 45-81.

Selected Book Reviews and Articles

Yavari, Neguin. “Advice for the Sultan: Prophetic Voices and Secular Politics in Medieval Islam,” in Society for Contemporary Thought and the Islamicate World: SCTIW Review (2015).

Soroush. Abdolkarim, “Expansion of Prophetic Experience: Essays on Historicity, Contingency and Plurality in Religion,” in Society for Contemporary Thought and the Islamicate World (2014).

Kamrava. M., “Iran’s Intellectual Revolution,” in Middle East Journal 63, 2 (2009): 327-328.

“Feminist Epistemologies/Interview with Linda M. Alcoff,” in Madreseh (Cultural and Philosophical Quarterly-Tehran) 2, 4 (2006): 50-63.

Roxanne L. Euben, “Enemy in the Mirror: Islamic Fundamentalism and the Limits of Modern Rationalism,” in International Journal of Middle East Studies 37, 1 (2005): 109-110.