Testimonial by Asael Benyami

MA student, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel

2 weeks 2020 Learn Persian Through the Shahname

I am thankful to ASPIRANTUM for organizing the wonderful "Learn Persian through the Shahname" online course in which I took part in September 2020, led by Ruben Nikoghosyan with the assistance of Prof. Vardan Voksanian.

As a long time and advanced learner of Persian, I was highly impressed by the quality of the instruction and gained myself much from it.

Ruben Nikoghosyan is an excellent instructor. He definitely masters every bit and part of the Shahnameh. Besides his subject-matter expertise, he was very attuned to our needs and questions in class. Even when he was unsure of the answer, he always returned to class the next day with an excellent and well-researched explanation.

As a linguist, I found the focus on etymology and classical Persian grammar highly enlightening. The contrast made between Persian as a language, Classical Persian as a step in its development, and the language of the Shahnameh as a literary phenomenon was very helpful, as was the focus on speaking modern Persian during class time.

The secondary readings, which included introductory academic and non-academic articles in modern Persian, were very useful. They were neatly integrated in our discussions while not overshadowing the need for individual tailoring of the lessons to the group's abilities and strengths.

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Our Persian language courses are open to anyone with upper elementary or intermediate knowledge of the Persian language. The lectures are organized with the academic interests of our participants in mind. Students as well as researchers working in Iranian Studies and relevant fields will benefit the most from our courses.

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Christopher Conlon

MPhil, Islamic Studies and History, University of Oxford, UK

“This course left a lasting impression on all participants. We are grateful to the ASPIRANTUM team for quickly adopting to the online format this summer. We are also grateful to Professor Voskanian for his encouragement, support, and friendship.”

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Max Bledstein

PhD Candidate, University of New South Wales, Australia

“I would highly recommend this course to anyone looking to develop their knowledge of Persian language and culture. Thank you very much for the amazing experience!”

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Sulayman Ha

Haverford College, USA

“Hands down this has been the best online language learning experience I’ve had so far. Strongly recommend to anyone hoping to boost their Persian.”

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