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Jason Jorjani

Jason Reza Jorjani
Born1981 (age 37–38)
Manhattan, New York
NationalityAmerican
OccupationWriter, lecturer, and former editor-in-chief of Arktos Media

Jason Reza Jorjani (born 1981) is an American writer, former New Jersey Institute of Technology lecturer, and former editor-in-chief of the publishing company Arktos Media.[1][2] He was also the founder of the AltRight Corporation and AltRight.com, which he collaborated on with alt-right leader Richard Spencer before resigning less than a year later in August 2017, for the stated reasons that he wanted to commit to the Iranian Renaissance[3] (a 501(c)(3) cultural organization)[4][5] and that the AltRight Corporation was a "miscarriage" and "total failure".[6]

Biography

Jason Reza Jorjani was born and raised in Manhattan, New York, the only child of an Iranian immigrant father and a mother who comes from a working-class family of “northern European heritage.”[1][7] He is a dual citizen of the United States and Iran.[7] He earned undergraduate and graduate degrees from New York University, and received a PhD in philosophy from Stony Brook University on Long Island in 2013.[8] While serving as a full-time faculty member at the New Jersey Institute of Technology, Jorjani taught courses on Science, Technology, and Society (STS), the philosophy of Martin Heidegger, and the history of Iran.[9]

Jorjani has appeared as a guest on Jeffrey Mishlove's New Thinking Allowed for interviews on topics ranging from Persian Philosophy, Sarmatians, Gnosticism, Postmodernism, Heideggerian Philosophy, Sufism, Rudolf Steiner, and Zarathustra.[10]

Views

Expanse of the Persian Empire in the Achaemenid era, 6th century BC

Jorjani is a vocal admirer of the Persian Empire and envisions a new Indo-European world society in a cosmopolitan manner similar to the Achaemenid Empire of Cyrus the Great with the philosophical teachings of the Gathas of Zarathustra. Consequently, Jorjani is a member of the Iranian Renaissance cultural movement, which, among other things, advocates for an "organic cultural awareness" of the massive importance ancient Iran has had on western civilization and Occidental philosophy and a "re-connection" between the contemporary Islamic Republic of Iran and its ancient Persian cultural heritage.[11][5] According to Jorjani, the tomb of Cyrus the Great has become the "new mecca" of the Iranian youth, who also often wear the Faravahar as a pendant and celebrate ancient Persian holidays.[11]

He has cited Stanley Kubrick as his favorite filmmaker and Franz Kafka as his favorite literary figure.[4] Jorjani's ideas have been described by journalist Olivia Hardhill as influenced by Dark Enlightenment philosophy, particularly that of Nick Land.[12]

Jorjani claims to not be a nationalist or racist (specifically stating that white-nationalism is a "bankrupt ideology and extremely destructive")[6] and identifies himself as a progressive and a feminist.[4] After resigning from AltRight, he stated that the organization was "reduced, basically, to a platform for organizing alt-right rallies attended by some very questionable individuals who I want not very much to do with" and "If I had known that this is where things would wind up, I would never had gotten involved in the first place."[6]

In 2019, Jorjani pledged his support for Tulsi Gabbard in the 2020 United States presidential election.

Controversies

Spencer and Jorjani had met at a National Policy Institute conference, at which both of them spoke, that became famous after attendees gave Roman salutes (interpreted as Nazi salutes) as Spencer led the crowd in shouting "Hail Trump!"[13] Jorjani subsequently claimed that he did not intend to speak at the conference and that he rejected the white-nationalist ideology Spencer began integrating into their organization.[4]

In September 2017, Jorjani was suspended from his teaching position at the New Jersey Institute of Technology in response to a covert video in which Jorjani predicted a future where concentration camps would return to Europe[14] and Adolf Hitler would appear on European currency.[6] Jorjani claimed that his remarks were spliced into pieces from a two-hour conversation and rearranged out of context, and that the prediction was a warning of a dystopian future, not an endorsement.[14][15][4] He has predicted that Muslim citizens and immigrants will be deported from Europe by 2050,[16] and stated that such mass-expulsions would "follow from continued, ill-advised policies regarding mass-migration in Europe".[4]

In February 2017, campus officials of NJIT told Jorjani they would not renew his annual teaching contract. In July 2018, Jorjani filed for a $25M lawsuit against NJIT, alleging that campus officials violated Jornani's constitutional right to freedom of speech and association and that campus leaders and colleagues subsequently defamed Jorjani in campus-wide emails and in the student newspaper. Denise Anderson, a spokeswoman for the school, denied the allegations and said, “Dr. Jorjani’s claims of wrongdoing by the university or its representatives are untrue, and we intend to vigorously defend against any such claims.”[17]

Works

  • Prometheus and Atlas (February 18, 2016) ISBN 1912079933
  • World State of Emergency (August 3, 2017) ISBN 1910524611
  • Iranian Leviathan: A Monumental History of Mithra's Abode (September 1, 2019) ISBN 1912975408
  • Novel Folklore: On Sadegh Hedayat's The Blind Owl (May 22, 2018) ISBN 1642641030
  • World State of Emergency (August 3, 2017) ISBN 1912079933
  • Lovers of Sophia (August 1, 2017) ISBN 0994595883

References

  1. ^ a b Mazzola, Jessica (27 September 2017). "I'm a leftist, not a Nazi, says N.J. professor at center of Hitler video controversy". NJ.com.
  2. ^ Porter, Tom (20 September 2017). "An alt-right chief boasted to an undercover activist of secret links to the White House". Newsweek.
  3. ^ Jorjani, Jason (20 September 2017). "Why I Left the Alt-Right".
  4. ^ a b c d e f "Who is Jason Reza Jorjani?". October 24, 2017.
  5. ^ a b "About the Iranian Renaissance". October 16, 2019.
  6. ^ a b c d "Richard Spencer's Alt Right Group is Due for "Implosion," Says Ex Business Partner". October 19, 2017.
  7. ^ a b Schaeffer, Carol (March 18, 2018). "Jason Jorjani's Rise and Fall in the "Alt-Right" Movement". The Intercept. Retrieved October 16, 2019.
  8. ^ Flaherty, Colleen (December 16, 2016). "New Scrutiny for a Ph.D." Inside Higher Education.
  9. ^ "Jason Reza Jorjani". Retrieved October 14, 2019.
  10. ^ "New Thinking Allowed". Retrieved October 14, 2019.
  11. ^ a b "Iranian Renaissance with Jason Reza Jorjani". November 10, 2016.
  12. ^ Goldhill, Olivia (18 June 2017). "The neo-fascist philosophy that underpins both the alt-right and Silicon Valley technophiles". Quartz.
  13. ^ Gray, Rosie (12 January 2017). "A 'One-Stop Shop' for the Alt-Right". The Atlantic.
  14. ^ a b Mazzola, Jessica (26 September 2017). "NJIT prof suspended over video of him discussing Hitler's legacy". NJ.com.
  15. ^ Mazzola, Jessica (22 September 2017). "Alt-right N.J. professor who foresees return of concentration camps under fire". NJ.com.
  16. ^ "Identity Evropa and Arktos Media — Likely Bedfellows". Southern Poverty Law Center. 26 September 2017.
  17. ^ Jones, Michael (July 30, 2018). "'Alt-right' professor ousted from college files $25M lawsuit". thecollegefix. Retrieved October 16, 2019.

External links