Austin O'Malley

Assistant Professor, Persian and Iranian Studies

Austin O’Malley, the Roshan Institute Assistant Professor of Persian and Iranian Studies, received his PhD from the University of Chicago in 2017. His research centers on the rhetoric, didacticism, and reception of pre-modern Sufi literature, and he is currently pursuing a book project that examines the poetry of Farid al-Din ʿAttar from an audience-centered, rhetorical perspective. Other ongoing projects include an investigation into the fictionality and truth of allegorical dream visions, an exploration of how hagiographical writing was adapted to meet the spiritual needs of changing audiences and work on an optical character recognition engine for the digitization of Persian texts. At the University of Arizona, he teaches courses on the literature, culture, and history of Iran and the wider Middle East. Before coming to Tucson, he was a Junior Fellow at the Martin Marty Institute at the University of Chicago Divinity School and a Lecturer of Persian at Northwestern University.