Women's Studies Program

Shahla Haeri is the director of Women's Studies Program and an Assistant Professor of cultural Anthropology at Boston University. She has conducted research in Iran, Pakistan, and India, and has written extensively on religion, law and gender dynamics in the Muslim world. She is the author of Law of Desire: Temporary Marriage, Mut’a, in Iran (1989, 1993), and of No Shame for the Sun: Lives of Professional Pakistani Women (Syracuse University Press in the US, and Oxford University Press in Pakistan, 2002). She was involved in the University of Chicago’s multi-year program on global fundamentalism, Fundamentalism Project, which was funded by a John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur grant, and she contributed an article to the second volume: “Obedience versus Autonomy: Women & Fundamentalism in Iran & Pakistan” (1993). She has been awarded several postdoctoral fellowships, including one at the Center for Middle Eastern Studies, Harvard University (1985-86), Pembroke Center for Teaching and Research on Women, Brown University (1986-87), Social Science Research Council (1987-88), St. Anthony's College, Oxford University (1996), and a Fulbright (1999-2000, 2002-2003).
Dr. Haeri has also made a short video documentary (46 min.) titled Mrs. President: Women and Political Leadership in Iran, which focusses on six women presidential contenders in Iran in 2001. This documentary is distributed in the United States and Canada by the Films for the Humanities and Sciences (, 2002).