A Blog by the Editor of The Middle East Journal

Putting Middle Eastern Events in Cultural and Historical Context

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Ruhi Ramazani: We Have Lost One of the Giants

Ruhi Ramazani
R.K. Ramazani, the undisputed Dean of Iranian Foreign Policy Studies in the US, passed away earlier today. The Edward R. Stettinius Professor Emeritus of Government and Foreign Affairs at the University of Virginia trained generations of Iran specialists and other Middle East experts over his more than 60 years at UVA.

Ruhi, as he was universally known ("Ruhollah was Khomeini's name; I don't use it anymore") was a Persian gentleman of the old school, who came to the US in 1952 and has been a fixture at UVA  ever since. And Mr. Jefferson's University left its stamp on him: he also wrote frequently about Jeffersonian principles, and he was on the Board at Monticello.

Ruhi had a long and loyal association with both the Middle East Institute and The Middle East Journal, serving at various times on MEI's Board of Governors and on the Journal's Board of Advisory Editors. He published his first article in MEJ in Spring of 1958, and his most recent in Autumn 2004. Many of those articles were collected in his book Independence without Freedom: Iran's Foreign Policy, published in 2013 by (of course) UVA Press. He also came to our Annual Conference until age and failing health made the drive from Charlottesville impossible. He continued to donate to the Journal annually.

My condolences to Nesta and the children and grandchildren.

Ruhi himself deserves the last word: UVA did this interview in 2007:

R.K. Ramazani, Interview, UVA Today from R.K. Ramazani on Vimeo.

1 comment:

David Mack said...

Thanks, Mike. You spoke for many of us who knew Ruhi.