Michael Axworthy is a senior lecturer at the University of Exeter’s Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies. He became the Director of the University’s new Centre for Persian and Iranian Studies (CPIS) in autumn of 2008 and is also a Fellow of both the Royal Asiatic Society and the Royal Society of Arts. Axworthy served as the Head of the Iran Section at the British Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) from 1998-2000, before working in Cornwall and publishing his first book. He received both his MA and PhD from the University of Cambridge.
Axworthy’s first book, The Swords of Persia, covers the topic of the great Iranian conqueror Nader Shah (published in 2006). His second book entitled, Iran: Empire of the Mind: A History of Iran (Hurst Books), appeared in November 2007 and was published by Basic Books and Penguin. However, Penguin published the book as a paperback in November 2008 under the title, Iran: Empire of the Mind. His latest book published in March 2013 conveys the story of Iran since the revolution of the ayatollahs, including a full account of the Iran-Iraq war.