Afro-Iranians (Persian: ایرانیان آفریقاییتبار) are people of Black African descent residing in Iran. Most Afro-Iranians are concentrated in the provinces of Hormozagan, Sistan and Baluchestan and Khuzestan.
|Regions with significant populations|
|Sistan and Balochestan, Hormozgan, Khuzestan|
|Persian, Arabic, Balochi|
|Islam (predominantly Shia; Sunni)|
|Related ethnic groups|
The Indian Ocean slave trade was multi-directional and changed over time. To meet the demand for menial labor, Africans were captured by Arab slave traders were sold in cumulatively large numbers over the centuries to the Persian Gulf, Egypt, Arabia, India, the Far East, the Indian Ocean islands and Ethiopia.
During the Qajar dynasty, Nilotic and Nubian females were brought over and mostly employed as concubines and confidantes in harems and could reach key positions. Females from the Swahili Coast were employed often for domestic work. People from the Zanj, who were Bantu-speaking peoples that lived along the coast of the Southeast Africa, in an area roughly comprising modern-day Tanzania, Mozambique and Malawi were also brought into Iran for work. However, Mohammad Shah Qajar, issued a firman suppressing the slave trade into Iran in 1848.
- Abdolreza Barzegari, footballer
- Ali Firouzi, footballer and coach
- Ibrahim ibn al-Mahdi, Caliph of Baghdad and son of an Afro-Iranian mother
- Mehrab Shahrokhi, footballer
- Shanbehzadeh Ensemble, Iranian folk band
- T. J. Houshmandzadeh, NFL wide receiver
- Yara Shahidi, actress from Black-ish and Grown-ish
- Khosronejad, Pedram (2018), ", Unveiling the Veiled: Royal Consorts, Slaves and Prostitutes in Qajar Photographs.", Exhibition Catalogue: 44 pp "Unveiling the Veiled"
- Khosronejad, Pedram (2018), "Re-imagining Iranian African Slavery: photography as material Culture.", Exhibition Catalogue: 24 pp "Re-imagining Iranian African Slavery: photography as material Culture"
- Khosronejad, Pedram (2017), "Qajar African Nannies: African Slaves and Aristocratic Babies.", Visual Studies of Modern Iran, 1: 70 pp "Qajar African Nannies"
- Khosronejad, Pedram (2016), "Out of Focus, Photography of African Slavery in Qajar Iran.", The Anthropology of the Contemporary Middle East and Central Eurasia, 4: 1–31 "Out of Focus, Photography of African Slavery in Qajar Iran"
- Khosronejad, Pedram (2016), "Photography of African Slavery in Iran.", the Guardian: Interview of Dr. Louise Siddons, Associate Professor of Art History (Department of Art, Oklahoma State University) with Dr. Pedram Khosronejad "Photography of African Slavery in Iran"
- Khosronejad, Pedram (2016), "The face of African slavery in Qajar Iran – in pictures.", the Guardian/"The face of African slavery in Qajar Iran – in pictures"
- Lee, Anthony A. (2012), "Enslaved African Women in Nineteenth-Century Iran: The Life of Fezzeh Khanom of Shiraz.", Iranian Studies, 45:3: 417–437, doi:10.1080/00210862.2011.637769
- Mirzai, B. A. (2002), "African presence in Iran: Identity and its reconstruction in the 19th and 20th centuries", Revue française d'histoire d'outre-mer, 89: 336–337
- Mirzai, Behnaz. Afro-Iranian Lives (documentary film). afroiranianlives.com. Retrieved 23 November 2011.
- Gwyn Campbell, The Structure of Slavery in Indian Ocean Africa and Asia, 1 edition, (Routledge: 2003), p.ix
- F.R.C. Bagley et al., The Last Great Muslim Empires, (Brill: 1997), p.174
- Bethwell A. Ogot, Zamani: A Survey of East African History, (East African Publishing House: 1974), p.104
- UNESCO: Fugitive Slaves, Asylum and Manumission in Iran (1851 – 1913)
- Afro-Iranian Lives (a documentary film by: Behnaz Mirzai)
- Afro-Iran (an ethnographic photography project and book by: Mahdi Ehsaei)
- Afro-Iranians through the Lens of Documentarists (Review of Behnaz Mirzais' documentaries by: Pedram Khosronejad)
- A History of Slavery and Emancipation in Iran, 1800–1929 (Review of Behnaz Mirzai's Book by: Pedram Khosronejad)