Opening Night of Like Water Through Stone: Celebrating Hamid Naficy: Block Museum - Northwestern University
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Opening Night of Like Water Through Stone: Celebrating Hamid Naficy

Close up of an older adult man smiling with a burst of light across his face
5:30 PM-8:00 PM

Event Details

Date & Time:

Thu June 2, 2022
5:30 PM-8:00 PM


The Block Museum of Art
40 Arts Circle Drive
Evanston, IL 60208


Open to the public


Opening Night of Like Water Through Stone: Celebrating Hamid Naficy’s Contributions to Iranian Film and Diaspora Studies 


Thursday’s program is "Opening Night of Like Water Through Stone: Celebrating Hamid Naficy’s Contributions to Iranian Film and Diaspora Studies," a two-day gathering celebrating Naficy’s career and intellectual legacies, honoring and reflecting on his towering contributions to multiple fields. Friday’s program will include three panels, short film screenings, personal testimonials, and more. For details, go to the MENA Program website.

HAMID NAFICY, Professor Emeritus of Radio/Television/Film and Middle East and North African Studies at Northwestern University, is a pioneering scholar in the cultural studies of diaspora and exile, postcolonial cinemas and media, and of Iranian and Middle Eastern cinemas and media. His many books include The Making of Exile Cultures: Iranian Television in Los Angeles (1993), Home, Exile, Homeland: Film, Media, and the Politics of Place (1999), An Accented Cinema: Exilic and Diasporic Filmmaking (2001), and the four-volume masterwork A Social History of Iranian Cinema (2011-12), which has been called “a landmark achievement” and “essential reading not only for the cinephile interested in Iran’s unique and rich cinematic history but also for anyone wanting a deeper understanding of the cataclysmic events and metamorphoses that have shaped Iran.” In 2021, the Association for Iranian Studies and the Center for Iranian Diaspora Studies at San Francisco State University established the Hamid Naficy Book Award. The first Hamid Naficy Book Award will be presented in August 2022 in Salamanca, Spain.

Keynote Speaker

MICHAEL M.J. FISCHER is Andrew W. Mellon Professor in the Humanities and Professor of Anthropology and Science and Technology Studies at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. His many books include Iran: From Religious Dispute to Revolution (1980, 2nd Edition, 2003), Anthropology as Cultural Critique (1986, 2nd Edition, 1999), Emergent Forms of Life and the Anthropological Voice (2003), Mute Dreams, Blind Owls, and Dispersed Knowledges: Persian Poesis in the Transnational Circuitry (2004), Anthropological Futures (2009), and Anthropology in the Meantime: Experimental Ethnography, Theory, and Method for the Twenty-First Century (2018). He served as Director of MIT’s Program in Science, Technology and Society, and earlier as the Director of Cultural Studies at Rice University, where he hired Hamid Naficy first as a Rockefeller Fellow and then helped hire him as a faculty member. He did fieldwork in Iran from 1971-73, and 1975, and has been an interested consumer of films and scholarship on Iran, from the first North American Film Festival, organized by Hamid Naficy at UCLA.



Please note: At 4:30 PM there is a reception at Norris University Center/East Lawn* (1999 Campus Dr.) before the opening night event at the Block Museum- For additional on the reception see MENA's website

*Backup in case of rain: 205 Louis Room, Norris University Center

5:30 PM - Welcoming/Opening Remarks

5:45 PM - Screening of Mouth Harp in Minor Key: Hamid Naficy In/On Exile (dir Maryam Sepehri, 2017, 62 min, digital), a documentary exploring the life of this pathbreaking scholar, courtesy of Third World Newsreel.

6:50 PM - Keynote address by Michael M.J. Fischer: “Unaccented Hamid Naficy: Cartoonist, Ethnographer, Social Historian of Film, Friend”

Co-presented with the Middle East & North African Studies Program, Center for Global Culture and Communication, Department of Radio/Television/Film and the Block Museum of Art


Contact The Block Museum of Art for more information: (847) 491-4000 or email us at