International Conference on Iran-China Cultural and Civilisational Talks

International Conference on Iran-China Cultural and Civilisational Dialogues


The relations between the ancient civilizations of Iran and China have a long history, with the footprints of the Chinese civilization being visible in Iranian legends. According to the reports, the narratives, histories, diaries and writings of Iranian and Chinese historians, started about 2500 years ago, these relations have always existed, before and after Islam. However, according to some scholars, they began with the building of the Silk Road which facilitated transactions among countries. It is now clear that, as a result of these economic relations, the two countries have engaged in scientific, artistic and religious relations. Officially, these relations have been recorded since the time of Parthian Empire (Mehrdad II). During the Mongols" empire, the relations became more significant. You can find the marks of these relations on the Silk Road. Mutual cultural, artistic and literary affects between the Chinese and the Iranians, and even the entering of different Iranian religions into China is a sign of these interactions (e.g. Zoroastrianism, Manichaeism, Buddhism and Islam).

From historical and geographical perspectives, Iran has been a bridge to the West for the Chinese. When Islam came into Iran and the Iranians made some conquests, Iran and China had a common border and Islam entered China. With the beginning of the Sung Dynasty in China, which was a tolerant regime, some Muslim Iranians migrated to China because of the Omavid and Abbasid dictatorships. In the time of the Mongols, Iran and China were parts of their territory. When Kubla Khan came to power in China, Iran and China began some tight relations so much so that it affected Iranian art and painting. During the Timurid Dynasty, Samarkand was the economical, artistic and political centre of the two countries. Some guy called Ali Akbar writes a diary of his trip to China called Khotay-Naameh, during the Safavid Period. With the beginning of the Manchu dynasty, the relations between the two countries were stopped until 1321.

The political and social developments in China have changed the cultural situation in this country. With the collapse of the Ching Dynasty, the leadership of Sun Yat-Sen, the 1911 Revolution, the beginning of the Republic of China in 1912, and after Communism and the Mao Reforms, the value tenets of this civilization and the Chinese traditions have been preserved. We can see that they have been successful in their relations with modernity. In the modern era, their achievements in cultural and economical areas have led to this wondering: how have these changes occurred and how has an old civilization based on an old tradition become successful. Analysing such experiences can be helpful for our country. Under the new circumstances, there is a potential for mutual understanding and also for cooperation in cultural issues. This necessitates thinking about the heritage and the history of the relationships. In the recent decades, after the triumph of the Islamic Revolution in Iran, the relations between the two countries have developed. Building centres for Chinese and Iranian Studies; holding conferences by centres as the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the Iranian Organization for Islamic Culture and Relations; and exchange of students have all led to more ties between the two countries. The Iranian Studies Programme and more attention paid to Farsi Language is important in China and there are famous Iranologists in China.

China has showed that it can reach a synthesis of its past and the modern and postmodern necessities. Success in economy and cultural understanding (via establishing societies like the Confucius Society) show the importance of China in mutual cultural talks. This conference tries to provide such a basis. Common themes like mythology, art, poetry and literature and some religious and mystic beliefs, common to both countries, can help us in this direction. With no doubt, China can be a source of inspiration for us and also be inspired by the Iranian Culture.


The Confucius International Institute; Allameh Tabataba"i University (ATU) Departments of Philosophy, Chinese Language, and History; Beijing University of Foreign Studies; and the Iranian Society of Intercultural Philosophy.


Monday and Tuesday, 30 and 31 October 2017.


Faculty of Persian Literature and Foreign Languages, Allameh Tabataba"i University, South Allameh St., Pol-e Modiriat, Chamran Highway, Tehran, Iran.

Contact Details:

For more detailed information on the conference, please contact the following telephone numbers: +9821 88756202 and +9821 88692345-9 on the extension 211, email us at or contact our Telegram ID at @Iran_China_Dialogue.

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