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Baruch College Historian Ervand Abrahamian
Elected to American Academy of Arts and Sciences

Middle East Historian is One of 229 Scholars, Artists, and Scientists Named
2010 Fellows and Foreign Honorary Members


(New York NY, April 21, 2010) Ervand (Jed) Abrahamian, Distinguished Professor of History at Baruch College and the CUNY Graduate Center, has been named a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Abrahamian, a specialist on Middle East and Iranian history, is a widely cited authority on U.S- Iranian relations, the regime of Iran’s president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, and Iran’s nuclear stand-off with the West.

Professor Abrahamian joins such luminaries as director Francis Ford Coppola, IBM Chairman and CEO Samuel Palmisiano and the Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, as one of 229 scholars, artists, scientists, jurists, and corporate and philanthropic leaders elected to the Academy’s 2010 Class of Fellows and Foreign Honorary Members.

Educated at Oxford and Columbia Universities, Professor Abrahamian joined the Baruch College faculty in 1973. His books include Tortured Confessions: Prisons and Public Recantations in Modern Iran, Iran Between Two Revolutions, and, most recently, A History of Modern Iran (Cambridge University Press, 2008). He is currently at work on a book about the 1951-53 Iranian oil crisis.

Contacted in his office, Professor Abrahamian expressed surprise and delight at his election. “This came to me completely out of the blue,” Abrahamian said. “It’s a great honor to be in the company of some of the world’s top scientists, artists, and educators. I never expected my name to be listed anywhere alongside that of the Archbishop of Canterbury.”

James McCarthy, Provost of Baruch College, called Abrahamian, “a consummate scholar whose work provides keen insight into the complexities of Middle East history and politics. His election to the American Academy speaks volumes about the quality of research and teaching at Baruch College and, especially, about its superb Department of History.”

Founded in 1780, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences is one of the nation’s oldest and most prestigious honorary societies. A center for independent policy research, the Academy celebrates the 230th anniversary of its founding this year. Its 4000 American Fellows and 600 Foreign Honorary Members include winners of the Nobel, Pulitzer and Shaw prizes; MacArthur and Guggenheim fellows; and Grammy, Tony and Oscar winners.

Founders of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences include Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, John Adams and George Washington. The Academy’s original 1780 Charter states that the Academy’s purpose is “to cultivate every art and science which may tend to advance the interests, honor, dignity and happiness of a free, independent, and virtuous people.”
A formal induction ceremony for new Fellows will be held in Cambridge, Massachusetts on Saturday, October 9, 2010.

For additional details about the Academy and its newly elected 2010 Fellows, visit

Press Contact: Zane Berzins

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