About Me About Me | Matthew Thomas Miller
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Matthew Thomas Miller


Assistant Professor of Persian Literature and Digital Humanities at Roshan Institute for Persian Studies, University of Maryland, College Park; Director, Roshan Initiative in Persian Digital Humanities; and an affiliate of the Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities


About Me About Me | Matthew Thomas Miller

About Me

Brief Bio

Matthew Thomas Miller, PhD. is Assistant Professor of Persian Literature and Digital Humanities at Roshan Institute for Persian Studies at the University of Maryland, College Park and and an affiliate of the Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities. He also serves as the Director of the Roshan Initiative in Persian Digital Humanities (PersDig@UMD) and as the co-PI for the multi-institutional Open Islamicate Texts Initiative (OpenITI) and the Persian Manuscript Initiative (PMI). He has received generous funding for these projects from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, The National Endowment for the Humanities, and The Islamic Manuscript Association. His research focuses on medieval Sufi literature; the history of sexuality, the body, sense, and affect; and digital humanities. He currently is working on a book project, entitled Affected by God: Embodied Poetics and Somatic Epistemology in Medieval Persian Sufi Literature, and a number of articles on computational or “distant reading” approaches to Persian literature and carnivalesque Sufi poetry.

Education

2016—PhD, Comparative Literature (with Graduate Certificate, Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies), Washington University in Saint Louis
2009—MA, Islamic and Near Eastern Studies, Washington University in Saint Louis
2007—BA, International and Area Studies (with University Honors and Phi Beta Kappa), Washington University in Saint Louis

Honors, Awards, and Grants (Selected)

Scholarly Publications

  • “The Poetics of the Sufi Carnival: The Rogue Lyrics (Qalandariyyāt) as Heterotopic Countergenre(s).” Al-ʿUṣūr al-Wusṭā: The Journal of Middle East Medievalists (Forthcoming 2022).
  • “The Qalandar King: Early Development of the Qalandariyyāt and Saljuq Conceptions of Kingship in Amir Moʿezzi’s Panegyric for Sharafshāh Jaʿfari.” Iranian Studies (Forthcoming 2022).
  • (with Benajmin Kiessling, Gennady Kurin, and Kader Smail). “Advances and Limitations in Open Source Arabic-Script OCR: A Case Study,” Digital Studies / Le champ numérique 11:1 (2021). doi: https://doi.org/10.16995/dscn.8094
  • (third author, with Benjamin Kiessling and Daniel Stökl Ben Ezra). “BADAM: A Public Dataset for Baseline Detection in Arabic-script Manuscripts.” HIP 2019: 5th International Workshop on Historical Document Imaging and Processing (October 20th-21st, 2019). doi: https://dl.acm.org/doi/pdf/10.1145/3352631.3352648 1
  • (fourth author, with Maxim Romanov, Masoumeh Seydi, and Sarah Savant), “Open Islamicate Texts Initiative: a Machine-Readable Corpus of Texts Produced the Premodern Islamicate World.” DH2019 (Utrecht University 9-12 July 2019). doi: https://dev.clariah.nl/files/dh2019/boa/0838.html (Received the DH2019 prize for the most “innovative and interdisciplinary research”)1
  • (with Ali Khan Mahmudabad and Columba Stewart). “The Raja of Mahmudabad Palace Library Project.” Shi’i Studies Review 3 (2019): 271-279. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.17613/ap4q-zw79
  • “Embodying the Sufi Beloved: (Homo)eroticism, Embodiment, and the Construction of Desire in the Hagiographic Tradition of ‘Erâqi.” Journal of Middle Eastern Literatures 21:1 (2018): 1-27. doi: https://doi.org/10.1080/1475262X.2018.1492134
  • (with Bridget Almas, Emad Khazraee, and Joshua Westgard). “Manuscript Study in Digital Spaces: The State of the Field and New Ways Forward.” Digital Humanities Quarterly 12/2 (2018). doi: http://www.digitalhumanities.org/dhq/vol/12/2/000374/000374.html.
  • (with Maxim G. Romanov, Sarah Bowen Savant, and Ben Kiessling). “Important New Developments in Arabographic Optical Character Recognition (OCR).” Al-ʿUṣūr al-Wusṭā: The Journal of Middle East Medievalists 25 (2017). doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.17613/M6TZ4R.
  • (with Maxim G. Romanov and Sarah Bowen Savant). “Digitizing the Textual Heritage of the Premodern Islamicate World: Principles and Plans.” International Journal of Middle East Studies 50 (2017): 103-109. doi: https://doi.org/10.1017/S0020743817000964
  • (with Sarah Bowen Savant). “‘Tell Me Something I Don’t Know!’: The Place and Politics of Digital Methods in the (Islamicate) Humanities.” International Journal of Middle East Studies 50 (2017): 135-139. doi: https://doi.org/10.1017/S0020743817001027

Submitted Works (Under Peer Review)

  • “Genre in Classical Persian Poetry.” In The Routledge Handbook on Persian Literature, edited by Kamran Talattof (Oxfordshire: Routledge). Submitted to the editor in July 2020.
  • “Fakhr al-Dīn ʿIrāqī: Poet and Mystic.” In Literary Mystical Landscapes: Voices and Themes in Medieval Persian Prose and Poetry, edited by Fatemeh Keshavarz and Ahmet T. Karamustafa. Submitted to the editors in August 2019.

Works in Progress

  • Affected by God: Embodied Poetics and Somatic Epistemology in Medieval Persian Sufi Literature. Book manuscript in preparation.
  • Reading Classical Persian: A Comprehensive High-Frequency Introduction to Classical Persian. Book manuscript in preparation.

Public Intellectual Writing

Course Offerings

Service to Profession

  1. Considered a peer review publication by relevant academic organizations.  2