Richard Foltz

FoltzComplete profile on Concordia University’s departement of religion website »

An historian of comparative religious traditions, Richard Foltz is the founding director of Concordia’s Centre for Iranian Studies Programme. His books, Religions of Iran: From Prehistory to the Present (Oneworld, 2013) and Religions of the Silk Road: Premodern Patterns of Globalization (revised 2nd edition, Palgrave, 2010) propose historical models for considering the emergence, development and transmission of the world’s major religious traditions, emphasizing the contributions of Iranian civilization to world history.

 Foltz was also active in helping shape a new subfield combining religious studies with environmental ethics, often referred to as “Religion and Ecology”, having edited a popular course text titled Worldviews, Religion and the Environment: A Global Anthology (Wadsworth Thomson, 2002) and two seminal volumes exploring environmental values among Muslims, Islam and Ecology: A Bestowed Trust (Harvard, 2003) and Environmentalism in the Muslim World (Nova Science, 2005). His book Animals in Islamic Tradition and Muslim Cultures (Oneworld, 2006) was the first scholarly survey of how Muslims have viewed the importance of non-human animals.

Prof. Foltz is currently working on a volume of the Oxford New World History series, entitled Iran in World History. He is also Conference Chair for the upcoming meeting of the International Society for Iranian Studies which will be held in Montreal in August 2014.

Selected publications

Iran in World History, Oxford University Press, forthcoming 2015.

Religions of Iran: From Prehistory to the Present, Oneworld Publications, 2013.

Religions of the Silk Road: Premodern Patterns of Globalization, Palgrave Macmillan, 2010.

“Zoroastrians in Iran: What Future in the Homeland?” Middle East Journal 65/1 (2011): 73-84.

“Buddhism in the Iranian World,” The Muslim World 100/2-3 (2010): 204-214.

“Iranian Zoroastrians in Canada: Balancing Religious and Cultural Identities,” Iranian Studies 42/4 (2009): 561-77.