Department of Middle Eastern Studies
Department of Middle Eastern Studies

Babak Tabarraee


LecturerPhD, Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures, University of Texas at Austin

Lecturer, Persian Program Coordinator
Babak Tabarraee

Contact

Interests


Middle Eastern Cinemas, Iranian Media, Comedy, Cult Cinema, Transnational Media Reception

Biography


Babak Tabarraee received his Ph.D. in Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures from the University of Texas at Austin in 2020. He has also completed two graduate degrees in Film Studies (MA, 2013) and Dramatic Literature (MA, 2007). His research revolves around media reception in modern Iran. His writings have appeared in Iranian Studies, The Soundtrack, Cinephile, and the Iranian Encyclopedia of the World of Islam. His publications in Farsi include three authored books of fiction, twenty-two book-format translations, and several essays, short stories and screenplays. Before joining UT, he taught screenwriting and film analysis at the University of Art in Tehran. He is currently working on a book based on his recently completed dissertation: Iranian Cult: A Cinema of Failure.

Courses Recently Taught

Global Cult Cinema, Media and Migration in Iran, Iranian Cinema

Courses


PRS 329 • Media And Migration In Iran-Wb

40765 • Spring 2022
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM
Internet; Synchronous
GC

Please check back for updates.

PRS 381J • Intnsv Grd Lang Instrctn II-Wb

40770 • Spring 2022
Meets MWF 11:00AM-12:00PM
Internet; Synchronous
(also listed as PRS 611C)

Course Description

Intensive Persian II is an elementary-level course that is designed to help you continue to expand upon what you have learned during its prerequisite Intensive Persian I course. This course also, following the example set by its prerequisite, puts emphasis on speaking and using the language for communication. Therefore, as it can be expected, using any other language than Persian in the classroom will be very restricted. The four language skills (listening, speaking, reading, and writing) as well as pronunciation and vocabulary are incorporated into the course. Learning a language requires daily practice. For each hour the student spends in the classroom a minimum of two hours review is required outside the class. Students should have fulfilled the prerequisite Intensive Persian I with a letter grade of at least C to be able to take this course. Not open to native speakers or heritage learners of Persian.

By the end of this course you will:

1. Read and understand simple authentic passages on familiar topics.

2. Initiate social interactions, ask for information, and show awareness of cultural aspects of social interaction in Persian.

3. Be able to talk about yourself, your education, and your family background, travel plans, dining at a restaurant, etc., with native speakers of Persian;

4. Comprehend simple audio/video texts on familiar topics;

5. Be able to compose simple essays about yourself and your family and write them informal notes, and letters/emails

6. Know the difference between written and spoken Persian, recognize both registers, and be able to use basic expressions.

PRS 322K • Intermediate Persian I-Wb

41825 • Fall 2021
Meets MWF 1:00PM-2:00PM
Internet; Synchronous

This intermediate Persian language proficiency course is designed for students who have completed Persian 611C or 612C or have been assigned to the class as a result of a DMES placement test.  The material for this course will consist mainly of articles, stories and audio-visual materials from the internet. Texts will be supplemented with vocabulary lists and exercises and explanations of cultural aspects of the texts. The reading material will also be made available in audio format. The course aims to expand active vocabulary to approximately 1000 words by the end of the semester and to help students reach an intermediate high proficiency in Persian. Students should expect three hours of class preparation for each class hour of reading, listening, and writing. Daily homework assignments are corrected & discussed with students on a regular basis.

Texts

To be provided by instructor.

Grading

To be provided by instructor.

PRS 381H • Intnsv Grad Lang Instrctn I-Wb

41835 • Fall 2021
Meets MWF 11:00AM-12:00PM
Internet; Synchronous
(also listed as PRS 601C)

Course Description PRS 601C or Intensive Persian I is an elementary-level course that is designed to help you start learning Persian and to give you the tools to keep going. This course first introduces the Persian alphabet. The emphasis is on speaking and using the language for communication. The four language skills (listening, speaking, reading, and writing) as well as pronunciation and vocabulary are incorporated into the course. Learning a language requires daily practice. For each hour the student spends in the classroom a minimum of two hours review is required outside the class. There is no prerequisite for this course. Not open to native speakers or Heritage learners of Persian.

By the end of this course you will:

1.  Have mastered the Persian alphabet and sound system, be able to recognize and pronounce correctly all Persian sounds, and write accurately from dictation;

2.  Be able to initiate social interactions, ask for basic information, and be aware of basic cultural aspects of social interaction in Persian;

3.  Be able to talk about yourself, your education, and your family with native speakers of Persian accustomed to interacting with learners;

4.  Comprehend simple print texts on familiar topics;

5.  Comprehend simple audio/video texts on familiar topics;

6.  Be able to compose simple paragraphs about yourself and your family and friends;

7.  Know about the difference between written and spoken Persian, recognize both registers, and be able to use basic expressions.

Texts

Persian of Iran Today

Grading

Attendance and Participation: 20%

Homework: 20%

Homework Corrections: 5%

Tests: 25%

Culture Portfolio: 5%

MES S342 • Global Cult Cinema-Wb

82440 • Summer 2021
Meets MWF 11:30AM-1:00PM
Internet; Synchronous
GCWr (also listed as RTF S352)

With their dedicated fans and enduring presence in the public sphere, cult films unfold important crossovers between media and culture in different regional contexts. This course will analyze global configurations of cult cinema, especially in the Middle East. We will ask how and why certain movies have generated emotional attachments in different sociocultural environments and from various scholarly viewpoints. Reviewing the foundational texts on the concept of cult in film criticism, sociology, psychology, and religion studies, we will examine several approaches to studying the applications and functions of cult films and film cults. We will specifically examine case studies from and through the Middle East in order to understand the resonance of cult media texts around the world. Moreover, we will investigate the communal identities displayed through the cultural expressions of cult fans in order to better understand people’s complex relationship with the political order and cultural power. As such, “Global Cult Cinema” will explore less examined, but significant, areas of international film canons and fandoms. The interdisciplinary nature of this course further enables us to investigate important constituents of audience reactions to the global and local media through the purposeful use of the theories on popular culture, fandom, stardom, and politics of national and transnational film reception.

PRS 329 • Iranian Cinema-Wb

41545 • Spring 2021
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM
Internet; Synchronous

PRS 329: Iranian Cinema is an advanced content course in Persian (Farsi). As an acclaimed form of art and a locally productive industry, Iranian cinema has prompted various definitions over the past 120 years. Taught entirely in Persian, this course will introduce different approaches to studying Iranian cinema, while also providing students with the opportunity to achieve advanced-level language skills. The classes will be online and in a synchronous (live) format. This is a screening-intensive course, and we will watch many films of a wide range, including popular, arthouse, auteur-made, generic, and independent works. For each unit, we will read film history and criticism in both Persian and English and closely examine primary sources in their original language. Our goal at each turn will be to explore the advantages of each approach in determining what constitutes Iranian cinema as a national cinema. At the same time, we will highlight the socio-political contexts, industrial trends, aesthetic sensitivities, and representation strategies in several cycles and styles. By constantly reformulating the essential question of “what is Iranian cinema,” we seek to understand how the Iranian filmmakers, critics, cultural policy-makers, and viewers have answered this question in different historical periods. 

PRS 381J • Intnsv Grd Lang Instrctn II-Wb

41550 • Spring 2021
Meets MF 10:00AM-11:00AM
Internet; Synchronous
(also listed as PRS 611C)

Course Description

Intensive Persian II is an elementary-level course that is designed to help you continue to expand upon what you have learned during its prerequisite Intensive Persian I course. This course also, following the example set by its prerequisite, puts emphasis on speaking and using the language for communication. Therefore, as it can be expected, using any other language than Persian in the classroom will be very restricted. The four language skills (listening, speaking, reading, and writing) as well as pronunciation and vocabulary are incorporated into the course. Learning a language requires daily practice. For each hour the student spends in the classroom a minimum of two hours review is required outside the class. Students should have fulfilled the prerequisite Intensive Persian I with a letter grade of at least C to be able to take this course. Not open to native speakers or heritage learners of Persian.

By the end of this course you will:

1. Read and understand simple authentic passages on familiar topics.

2. Initiate social interactions, ask for information, and show awareness of cultural aspects of social interaction in Persian.

3. Be able to talk about yourself, your education, and your family background, travel plans, dining at a restaurant, etc., with native speakers of Persian;

4. Comprehend simple audio/video texts on familiar topics;

5. Be able to compose simple essays about yourself and your family and write them informal notes, and letters/emails

6. Know the difference between written and spoken Persian, recognize both registers, and be able to use basic expressions.

PRS 322K • Intermediate Persian I-Wb

40285 • Fall 2020
Meets MWF 11:00AM-12:00PM
Internet; Synchronous

This intermediate Persian language proficiency course is designed for students who have completed Persian 611C or 612C or have been assigned to the class as a result of a DMES placement test.  The material for this course will consist mainly of articles, stories and audio-visual materials from the internet. Texts will be supplemented with vocabulary lists and exercises and explanations of cultural aspects of the texts. The reading material will also be made available in audio format. The course aims to expand active vocabulary to approximately 1000 words by the end of the semester and to help students reach an intermediate high proficiency in Persian. Students should expect three hours of class preparation for each class hour of reading, listening, and writing. Daily homework assignments are corrected & discussed with students on a regular basis.

Texts

To be provided by instructor.

Grading

To be provided by instructor.

PRS 381H • Intnsv Grad Lang Instrn I-Wb

40295 • Fall 2020
Meets MWF 10:00AM-11:00AM
Internet; Synchronous
(also listed as PRS 601C)

Course Description PRS 601C or Intensive Persian I is an elementary-level course that is designed to help you start learning Persian and to give you the tools to keep going. This course first introduces the Persian alphabet. The emphasis is on speaking and using the language for communication. The four language skills (listening, speaking, reading, and writing) as well as pronunciation and vocabulary are incorporated into the course. Learning a language requires daily practice. For each hour the student spends in the classroom a minimum of two hours review is required outside the class. There is no prerequisite for this course. Not open to native speakers or Heritage learners of Persian.

By the end of this course you will:

1.  Have mastered the Persian alphabet and sound system, be able to recognize and pronounce correctly all Persian sounds, and write accurately from dictation;

2.  Be able to initiate social interactions, ask for basic information, and be aware of basic cultural aspects of social interaction in Persian;

3.  Be able to talk about yourself, your education, and your family with native speakers of Persian accustomed to interacting with learners;

4.  Comprehend simple print texts on familiar topics;

5.  Comprehend simple audio/video texts on familiar topics;

6.  Be able to compose simple paragraphs about yourself and your family and friends;

7.  Know about the difference between written and spoken Persian, recognize both registers, and be able to use basic expressions.

Texts

Persian of Iran Today

Grading

Attendance and Participation: 20%

Homework: 20%

Homework Corrections: 5%

Tests: 25%

Culture Portfolio: 5%

PRS 329 • Iranian Cinema

41614 • Spring 2018
Meets TTH 3:30PM-5:00PM CBA 4.326

Please check back for updates.

Curriculum Vitae


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