Reza Aslan, an internationally acclaimed writer and scholar of religions, is a regular commentator for NPR’s Marketplace and Middle East Analyst for CBS News.
He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Religion from Santa Clara University, a Master of Theological Studies from Harvard University, a Master of Fine Arts in Fiction from the University of Iowa, and is currently a Doctoral Candidate in Sociology of Religions at the University of California, Santa Barbara.
He has served as a legislative assistant for the Friends’ Committee on National Legislation in Washington D.C., and was elected president of Harvard’s Chapter of the World Conference on Religion and Peace, a United Nations Organization committed to solving religious conflicts throughout the world. He is a member of the Los Angeles Institute for the Humanities and serves on advisory boards of both the Council of Foreign Relations and the Ploughshares Fund, which distributes grants to further peace and diplomacy throughout the world.
Until recently, he was both Visiting Assistant Professor of Islamic and Middle East Studies at the University of Iowa and the Truman Capote Fellow in Fiction at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop.
He has written for the Los Angeles Times, the New York Times, Slate, Boston Globe, the Washington Post, the Guardian, Chicago Tribune, the Nation, and others, and has appeared on Meet The Press, Hardball, The Daily Show, Real Time with Bill Maher, The Colbert Report, Anderson Cooper, and Nightline.
His first book, No god but God: The Origins, Evolution, and Future of Islam has been translated into half a dozen languages, was short-listed for the Guardian (UK) First Book Award, and nominated for a PEN USA award for research Non-Fiction.
Born in Iran, he now lives in Santa Monica, Ca, where he is a Research Associate at the University of Southern California’s Center on Public Diplomacy. His next book, How to Win a Cosmic War: Why We’re Losing the War on Terror will be published by Random House in the Fall of 2008.