Adam Jones presents an inside look at Iran

What do we really know about the Islamic Republic of Iran, and how does the country reflect our own fears, anxieties and prejudices?

Covering more than 7,000 kilometeres in 27 days, Adam Jones’ tour of the Islamic Republic of Iran took him to most of the country’s major cities as well as to remote rural areas of Iranian Azerbaijan and Kurdistan.

Jones presents “Inside Iran,” Friday, where he will discuss the present-day politics, society and geography of Iran in a scholarship fundraiser sponsored by the Canadian Federation of University Women (CFUW).

Jones, an associate professor of political science at the University of British Columbia who specializes in Middle East politics, was determined to see this large and diverse country from the inside. During his 27-day tour by private car in June 2012, Jones’ journey took him from tea with nomads, to a drive-by of an Iranian nuclear research facility, offering a unique opportunity to see how Iranians live and love under sweeping theocratic restrictions; how the economy is functioning (even thriving) amidst pervasive sanctions; and how the rare foreign visitor is received in one of the world’s most ancient and enduring civilizations.

A widely-published photojournalist who has published one previous volume of travel photography, Jones will also present and discuss a selection of the many hundreds of eye-catching photographs he has posted from the trip (see www.flickr.com/photos/adam_jones/sets/72157630249401766/ for complete gallery).

Jones, who has published 15 sole-authored or edited books, began early in his Iran travels to keep a detailed diary of his experiences. Combined with 200 photos from the trip, the text forms the basis of In Iran, a book to be published in 2013 by The Key Publishing Co. in Toronto.

Jones’ lecture takes place Friday at 7 p.m. in the Lecture Theatre of the Kalamalka (Vernon) Campus of Okanagan College. Reflecting the CFUW’s sponsorship, the place of women in Iranian life — a subject of much controversy and misunderstanding — will be a particular theme of Jones’s presentation.

Tickets for Jones’ talk are $5 in advance at the Bean Scene cafe in Vernon, or $7 at the door. Students pay a discounted entry of $4, and a group rate is available for classes.

For further information, please contact Becky at 250-542-1944 or Susan at 250-545-7753. Jones may be contacted at adamj_jones@hotmail.com.