OUR SCHOLARS | Dr. Kevan Harris

Harris Kevan

Kevan Harris is Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of California-Los Angeles.  His first book is A Social Revolution: Politics and the Welfare State in Iran (2017, University of California Press).

Harris conducts research on the history of social policy and business-state relations in Iran. He also supervised the fielding of the 2016 Iran Social Survey, the largest nationally-representative survey of social relations in Iran since the 1979 revolution.

Harris obtained his degrees from Northwestern University (BA) and Johns Hopkins University (MA and Ph.D.) His current book project concentrates on occupational and class mobility in Iran before and after 1979.

What Dr. Kevan Harris Said

Political Islam

In the ‘40s and ‘50s, we’re talking about the Muslim brotherhood, who was one of the largest Islamic groups in existence. And so, I find all kinds of very interesting concepts that come out of this Egyptian and Levantine political Islam that’s very Sunni and Khomeini starts using them. And then you saw as the rural segments of Iran started to level with the urban segments, you then saw a switch by the government towards emphasizing secondary higher education, social insurance and different sorts of social policies which we recognize in other countries as well. And then out of this process you got the highly educated Iran that today we read about when we read newspaper reports by journalist who go and are amazed about how educated for example women in Iran are or all the aspirations that young people in Iran have.


Birth Control in Iran

In fact, because of the massive uptake and use of birth control, of family planning methods, even so called traditional family planning methods by many poor and middle income individuals and households in Iran. The population in 2000 was 70 million, not a 100 million. And this led to so many major transformations in Iranian society that I think we still today do not understand the gravity of it all.

Dr. Kevan Harris is Featured in The Third Path