Foto del docente

Andrea Piras

Full Professor

Department of Cultural Heritage

Academic discipline: L-OR/14 Iranian Philology, Religions and History


Keywords: middle-iranian texts zoroastrianism, manichaeism cultural interactions Royal ideology Avestan and Old Persian texts Iran - Central Asia

Cultural history (philology, linguistic, literature, religion, socio-political and istitutional) of pre-islamic Iran (Achaemenids, Parthians, Sasanians), with an overview on the first centuries of ègira and Islamic Iran (Omayyad and Abbasid remaking of Sasanian themes); evaluation of the ancestral Indo-Iranian heritage and further developments of intercultural contacts with Mesopotamia, Classic ancient world, Hellenism, Late Antiquity (Greece, Macedonians, Rome, Byzance) and with Central Asia (Bactria, Sogdiana, Chinese Turkestan).

Researches on Zoroastrian religion (edition of Avestan and Pahlavi texts; antropology, soteriology, eschatology, apocaliptic) and Manichaean religion (Iranian Manichaean texts); interrelationships between Zoroastrianism, Manichaeism, Christianity and Buddhism in Central Asia

Writings, languages, texts and documents of pre-islamic Iran and Central Asia; phaenomana of contacts and cultural interactions between the several idioms of the cultural history of Iranism and borderlines: Ancient Iranian (Avestan, Old Persian) and Ancient Indian (Vedic and Sanscrit), Indo-Iranian heritage and Indoeuropaean heritage; language and cultural contacts within Semitic world and Near Eastern, the Mesopotamian culture and its spread through Aramaic, to the Achamenid period and later dinasties (Parthians, Sasanians; Kushana and Bactrian inscriptions; Ashoka's edicts) until Central Asian documents (Middle-Persian and Parthian manichaean texts, Sogdian manichaean/buddhist/christian texts).

Iranian linguistic and thematic parallels, intertextuality in the Iranian world, continuity and transmission of a common lexicon of topics, concepts, mentalities, phraseologies and formular stereotypes in a variety of texts: Achaemenid inscriptions, Bactrian inscriptions, Sasanid inscriptions, and their relations with other texts (Avesta, Pahlavi zoroastrian texts, manichaean texts).  The corpus of the Avesta, its tradition, paleography, codicology and philology; the writing in simbolical and metagraphemic emploies. The Gatha of Zarathustra and the role of its criptical language in performative and cultic environment: rhetoric, stylistic, prosody, pragmatics of oral comunication and performance in ritual ideology and inner revelations (esoteric and initiatical knowledges, symbolism, metaphors, visual and hearing experiences). Avestan eschatological texts with Pahlavi translation (Hadoxt Nask); researches on the visual lexicon and analysis of contexts dealing with visual perception. The Yasht 16 to Cista/Daena: edition, translation, commentary, basic tenets, epithets and functions of the mythical scenario; stylistic, textual composition, metric and literarian parallels with other Yashts. The role of communication in the gender of epistolography inside the Achaemenid documents and the Parthians and Sasanid ones; pragmatic and ideology of letters in the royal correspondence, its effects on the addressee/recipient (behaviours, state of minds) and social implications (superior/inferior; hierarchies, obligations). Developments and trasmission of the Achaemenid legagy in epistolography, via Aramaic: Arsacid and Sasanian correspondence, Bactrian and Sogdian letters). Manichaeism as a "literarian religion" and the letter as a medium of comunication with the gods, and with soteriological implications (letter of rescue, letter of consolation); text and illustration in manichaeism: soteriological uses of writing and trasmission of doctrines; the scribes and the commitents; didactical values of iconography in order to spread Mani's teaching in the missionary and multilingual travels; ethical, symbolic and soteriological values of writing art (discipline, obeisance, compassion for believers).

Anthropology and religions of the Iranism: history, social environment, political institutions. The Zoroastrian religion in its historical dvelopment: time and homeland of Zarathustra, his teachings in poetic, rituals and mythology (God and gods, heavenly and "angelic" entities) and the conflicts with other priests, bards, wizards and warriors. The Yashts and the Late Avesta pantheon (Mithra, Anahita, Tishtrya, the Fravashis); the zoroastrianism in Greek sources: the Magi and Zoroaster, the Greeks and Persia, between attraction and scepticism. The zoroastrianism in Hellenism: Commagene and Asia Minor, the Magusei, Ostanes and the searching for the Saviour, the evangelic Magi; eschatology, oracles, mantic, esoteric mysteries and apocalyptical conceptions (judaism, christianity, gnosticism). The Pahlavi texts: cosmology, eschatology, apocalyptic, wisdom-didactical texts, epic. Continuity and changes in imperial institutions of Achaemenid, Parthians and Sasanians; royal ideology, symbol, insignia, rituals and charismas, functions and epithets. The imagery of kingship in manichaeism, in its church organization and metaphorical language (kingly apotheosis of the soul, epithets of nobility and victory for the believer fighting against the passions and ignorance). The Sasanid Persia and its relationship with Byzantium; the mediation of Syria and the role of christian church hierarchies in diplomacy; christians in Sasanid Persia: model of sanctity and martyrdom.