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Who Is Knowledgeable Is StrongScience, Class, and the Formation of Modern Iranian Society, 1900-1950$
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Cyrus Schayegh

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780520254473

Published to California Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520254473.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CALIFORNIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.california.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of California Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CALSO for personal use.date: 27 September 2021

The Historical Background

The Historical Background

(p.12) (p.13) Chapter 1 The Historical Background
Who Is Knowledgeable Is Strong

Cyrus Schayegh

University of California Press

In the challenge of the Constitutional Revolution (1905–11), an emerging modern middle class argued that the earlier reformist focus on politics had failed. The new creed held that change would come about only through profound sociocultural reforms—and modern science was the key that would unlock that door. This reformist change of mind was of consequence only, however, because it interacted with momentous social and political transformations and a shift in Iran's international position. The supposed Great Game preserving regional geostrategic stability did not survive World War 1. Around the same time, a modern middle class began to emerge in Iran, replacing the Qajar court as the spearhead of modern sociocultural production and the adoption of modern science, boosting their popularization, instruction, and practical application. The patrimonial Qajar bureaucracy finally gave way to a reformed, interventionist state administration interested in advancing higher modern education.

Keywords:   Constitutional Revolution, Iran, sociocultural reforms, Qajar, World War 1

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