Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies

Dr Nacim Pak-Shiraz

Dr Nacim Pak-Shiraz is the Head of Persian Studies and Senior Lecturer in Persian and Film Studies at the University of Edinburgh. She is also the Programme Director of the MSc in Persian Civilisation. She obtained her MA in Anthropology of Media and PhD in Film and Media Studies at the University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS).

Dr Nacim Pak-Shiraz

Senior Lecturer in Persian and Film Studies

  • Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies
  • University of Edinburgh

Room 2.3
19 George Square

Post Code

Affiliated research centres and programmes

Film Studies, University of Edinburgh

Research interests

She is interested in studying the socio-political context of the Middle East through a range of texts, including literature and arts with a particular focus on film. Her study of film is therefore located within its historical context, tracing social and cultural developments and their influences on film.

Her key research interests include film’s critical engagement with religion, modernisation and social changes, war and conflict as well the developments within Iranian cinema. Her publications include Shi‘i Islam in Iranian Cinema: Religion and Spirituality in Film and a number of articles on genre and comedy, the city, and truth and justice in Iranian cinema.

Current research activities

She is currently working on a number of research projects, chiefly the constructions of masculinities in Iranian cinema from its early pre-Revolutionary era down to the present day. She is also undertaking research on religious epics, with a particular focus on Qur’anic films.

Summary of research interests

  • Middle Eastern Cinema
  • Film, religion and spirituality
  • Iranian performing arts and religion
  • Politics and cinema
  • Gender and commercial cinema
  • Representations of gender in film
  • Masculinity in Iranian cinema
  • Religious epics
  • Persian literature


Undergraduate teaching

  • Cinema and Society in the Middle East
  • Classical Persian Literature
  • Modern Persian Literature
  • Islam Through the Arts
  • Of Wine, Love and Loss: Reading Iran through its Classical Literature

Postgraduate teaching

  • Cinemas of the Middle East
  • Research Methods and Practice


A full listing of Nacim's publications can be found on the Edinburgh Research Explorer:

Edinburgh Research Explorer