Recommended Websites

Listed below are some useful academic resources for study of modern South Asia and Zoroastrianism.

Modern South Asia

Ideas of India: Contains the tables of contents of over 250 English-language journals published in India from the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. Many of these journals–Modern Review, Indian Review, and Hindustan Review, for example–exerted significant influence upon Indian political and social thought, and yet have been largely forgotten.

Granth Sanjeevani: The Asiatic Society of Mumbai has been busy digitizing its collection, including runs of the Bombay Chronicle, a leading nationalist newspaper, and the Times of India. There is a nominal access fee. This is an invaluable resource that deserves to be emulated by other Indian institutions.

Abhilekh Patal: Contains digitized collections from the National Archives of India, and includes a “digitize upon demand” function.

Bombaywalla Historical Works: Information on Bombay’s/Mumbai’s built structures and a growing collection of archival materials related to the Adenwalla family.

South Asian Legal History Resources: Reading recommendations, research guides, databases, and much more, by Mitra Sharafi of the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Zoroastrianism

Don’t believe everything that you read on the internet! There are multiple websites on Zoroastrianism but only a few are truly reliable. Below is a list of some university-affiliated websites that offer information on Zoroastrianism, and the Zoroastrian community, based on solid academic research and work. I strongly recommend relying on these sites for facts on history and the religion. This is not an exhaustive list, of course, and there are many non-academic sites that also offer good information.

Encyclopedia Iranica: This is perhaps the best academic resource on the internet for Zoroastrianism. It contains comprehensive, well-researched articles on ancient Iran, medieval Iran, Zoroastrianism, other religions in ancient Iran, early Muslim Iran, Iranian Zoroastrians, Parsis, religious texts, and much, much more. The authors are some of the world’s top experts in their respective fields and their scholarship has offered new insights  that oftentimes challenges common belief.

Bibliographia Iranica: Run by Sajad Amiri, Shervin Farridnejad, Yazdan Safaee, and Arash Zeini, this is an exhaustive catalog of work published in Iranian Studies.

Achemenet: This site on the Achaemenid empire, the first Persian empire, is run by Pierre Briant, who has authored a magisterial 1100 page tome on the same subject.

Persepolis Tablets: Extremely, extremely little written material survives from the Achaemenid era.  Learn more about the Persepolis tablets, which constitute the most important trove of written material from that era.  The tablets are essentially account ledgers and other’bureaucratic’ documents that shed light on Achaemenid-era administration and–indirectly–religion.  The University of Chicago currently holds the so-called Fortification Tablets.

Sasanika: This site is run by Touraj Daryaee at the University of California, Irvine, who has recently written an extremely good book on the Sasanid empire. The site contains information on the Sasanids, their society, and current research.  Great images, as well!

Oriental Institute, University of Chicago: This site contains hundreds of images of Persepolis and other ancient Iranian sites.  The images were taken in the 1930s, which make them all the more interesting!

Avestan Digital Archive: The project is run by Alberto Cantera, University of Salamanca, and includes digitized images of various Zoroastrian manuscripts.

Parzor: Website of the UNESCO-sponsored Parsi Zoroastrian (Parzor) Project, run by Dr. Shernaz Cama of the University of Delhi. The website includes images, information, and an increasing number of articles on the Parsi community.

Iranian Studies at Harvard: Professor Oktor Skjærvø has put online an extremely large amount of material, including tutorials on ancient Persian languages, his translations of the holy texts, and his scholarship on Zoroastrianism.