Jaakko Hameen-Anttila

Professor of Arabic and Islamic Studies


He earned his PhD from the University of Helsinki (Finland) in 1994. Before coming to Edinburgh in June 2016, he worked as a Senior Researcher of the Finnish Academy 1997-2000 and Professor of Arabic and Islamic Studies at the University of Helsinki 2000-2016.

Undergraduate teaching

  • Classical Arabic Literature
  • Mystical Islam (Sufism)
  • Contribution to the core course History and Culture of Iran

Current PhD students supervised

  • Inka Nokso-Koivisto, Microcosm-Macrocosm Analogy in Rasa'il Ikhwan as-Safa' and Certain Related Texts (Helsinki).
  • Ilkka Lindstedt, The Transmission of al-Madāʾinī’s Material. Historiographical Studies (Helsinki).

Research summary

  • Late Antiquity and Early Arab-Islamic culture
  • translation and transmission of literature (Middle Persian - Arabic - Classical Persian)
  • the Qur'an
  • the literary debate as a genre from Mesopotamia to modern Arabic and Persian literature.

Current research interests

Dr Hämeen-Anttila is interested in Classical Arabic and Persian literature, Umayyad and Abbasid cultural history, the influence of Late Antiquity on the Arab-Islamic culture, the Qur'an, and translation and transmission of literature and culture in the area (Mesopotamia, Greece, Iran, Classical Arabic culture, and its influence on Europe).

Project activity

Dr Hämeen-Anttila is editing a part of al-Maqrizi's al-Khabar 'an al-bashar for Brill's Bibliotheca Maqriziana. He is also writing a monograph on the Middle Persian Khwadaynamag (Book of Kings) and its influence on Arabic and Persian historiography.