Persian Academic & Cultural Student Association at University of Southern California


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The 1953 Coup Revisited

Ervand Abahamian (B.A, Oxford University. Ph.D., Columbia University) is a historian of the Middle East specializing in modern Iran. He has taught at the universities of Oxford, Columbia, New York, and Princeton, in addition to the Graduate Center in the City University of New York and over forty years at Baruch College.

His book publications include: Iran Between Two Revolutions (Princeton University Press); The Iranian Mujahedin (Yale University Press); Khomeinism (University of California Press); Tortured Confessions (University of California Press); A History of Modern Iran (Cambridge University Press); and The Coup: 1953, The CIA, and the Roots of Modern US-Iran Relations (New Press). His books have also been published in Persian, Arabic, Turkish, Polish, and Italian. He is now working on a book on the 1979 revolution in Iran.

In 2011 he was elected a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. After years of research, Abrahamian completed The Coup: 1953, The CIA, and The Roots of Modern U.S.-Iranian Relations, published in Feb. 2013. The Coup addresses two major points that, he contends, are widely misunderstood even among scholars sympathetic to Mossadegh: 1) No reasonable offer was ever made by the British over oil nationalization, and thus it was not Mossadegh who was “stubborn” and “intransigent”. 2) The 28 Mordad coup could not have succeeded without foreign intervention, and was motivated primarily by hegemonic factors, not fears over Communist encroachment.

This event was made possible by the generous support of Farhang Foundation