Women and Higher Education in Postrevolutionary Iran: Unsettling Policies and Unanticipated Outcomes

  • Goli M. Rezai-Rashti
  • Susan James
Part of the Globalisation, Comparative Education and Policy Research book series (GCEP, volume 6)


This chapter analyses the position of women in Iran1 over the last 3 decades, particularly with reference to tertiary education. The objective is to explore (a) the commonly held view that the Islamic revolution and the Khomeini regime produced a serious and adverse setback in the status and condition of women in Iran and (b) the regime’s relationship to women’s increased participation, literacy, and access to higher education. The rationale for a focus on women’s achievements in higher education is that education is considered a key social development indicator measuring women’s status and condition in any country (see also Zajda, 2005). Furthermore, tertiary education is seen as providing greater opportunities for women in employment and social development (Zajda et al., 2008a, 2008b). According to Aghajanian, “education is one of the most objective dimensions of the status of women” influencing factors such as paid labour force participation and health status of women and female children (Aghajanian, 1994, p. 44).


High Education Tertiary Education Iranian Woman Islamic Republic Islamic State 
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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Goli M. Rezai-Rashti
  • Susan James

There are no affiliations available

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