Religious Appropriation of National Symbols in Iran: Searching for Cyrus the Great

  title={Religious Appropriation of National Symbols in Iran: Searching for Cyrus the Great},
  author={Menahem Merhavy},
  journal={Iranian Studies},
  pages={933 - 948}
In this article I examine the debate over the character of Cyrus the Great in Iran during the last four decades, using it as a prism to view the struggle over the desired balance between religious and ethnic components of Iranian identity. Heated polemics over the historical figure of Cyrus and his legacy reveal undercurrents of Iranian identity dilemmas as well as different and conflicting views of Iranian identity. Beyond a mere historical or religious controversy, the debate over the “right… 

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