NELC Alumnus Receives National Endowment for the Humanities Grant

Congratulations to NELC alum Kaveh Hemmat (NELC, PhD 2014) on receiving an NEH collaborative translation grant!

Kaveh Hemmat, now Assistant Professor in the Department of History, Philosophy and Theology at Benedictine University, received a grant of $195,000 from the National Endowment for the Humanities for a collaborative project to translate the Khataynameh (Book of China).  The Khataynameh, by Ali Akbar Khatayi, a merchant from Central Asia who traveled to Beijing and then back across the continent to Istanbul, was written in Persian in 1516.  Pitched as advice for the Ottoman empire, as it was expanding into Europe and the Middle East, the book shows how China was seen from Central Asia at a time when firearms were transforming warfare. It also documents a less studied side of globalization in the age of Columbus and Magellan: governments across Asia, Europe, and Africa simultaneously developed larger and more sophisticated armies, bureaucracies, and legal systems, creating the political foundations of the modern world. Professor Hemmat’s collaborators, Paul Buell (University of North Georgia), John Curry (University of Nevada, Las Vegas), Ralph Kauz (Bonn University), Hyunhee Park (John Jay College of Criminal Justice, CUNY), and David M. Robinson (Colgate University), together bring expertise in languages including Chinese, Mongolian, Persian, Arabic, and Ottoman, to translate a truly global text previously unavailable in English.