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FEZANA - Lived Zoroastrianism: A Conversation With Dr. Paulina Niechciał

Saturday, October 28, 2023 12:00 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

FEZANA Religion Education Committee invites you to

Lived Zoroastrianism:How Zoroastrian Women Practice Religion in the American Diaspora

A conversation with Dr.Paulina Niechciał

Time: Saturday Oct 28, 2023

9:00 AM Pacific |12:00 PM Eastern


The lecture will discuss the anthropological study conducted among Zoroastrian women settled in the United States of America, which since the mid-20th century has been accommodating migrants and refugees practicing Zoroastrianism. Zoroastrian migration is connected with the transfer of religious practices to the new continent and their transformation and reevaluation in a new context. As institutional Zoroastrianism has been male-dominated, it is particularly interesting to explore how women transform religion through their practices and how they challenge the traditional way of understanding Zoroastrianism.

The perspective that inspired the study is a lived religion approach that captures the changes and diversification of religious practices in everyday life, highlighting the way individuals practice religion. In 2019, as a recipient of the Kosciuszko Foundation Fellowship, hosted by the Department of Central Eurasian Studies at the Indiana University in Bloomington, Dr. Paulina Niechciał conducted fieldwork within her research project ‘Lived Religion’ in the Context of Migration: The Case of Zoroastrian Women in the USA. The qualitative interviews collected within the project were conducted among the first and second generations of female immigrants, who identified with a Zoroastrian community and had at least one parent of Zoroastrian origin from Iran, India or old Parsi colonies. Conducted in different states, including Illinois, California, Texas, Kentucky, and Ohio, the study reflects on the diversity of American Zoroastrians, subsequently indicating some general trends in the transformation of their religion.

About Dr. Paulina Niechciał

Paulina Niechciał is an assistant professor in the Center for Comparative Civilization Studies at Jagiellonian University, Poland. She completed her M.A. degree both in Ethnology (2006) and Iranian Studies (2008), and a Ph.D. degree in Sociology (2012). In her doctoral thesis, based on field research conducted among Zoroastrians in Tehran, she analyzed the issues of collective identity. Her academic interests cover the anthropology and sociology of religion and the contemporary cultures of Persiante societies of Iran, Afghanistan, and Tajikistan. She authored academic journal articles and book chapters on minority and identity studies and a monograph in Polish titled Zoroastrian Minority in Modern Tehran: On Collective Identity in the Context of Shi’a Domination (2013). Her most recent research interests focus on modern Zoroastrianism within a gender studies framework.

Join Zoom Meeting

FEZANA is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Topic: Lived Zoroastrianism: A Conversation with Paulina Niechciat

Time: Oct 28, 2023 12:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

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Meeting ID: 894 3548 7277

Passcode: FEZANA


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