Cultural linguistics and poetry: The case of Khayyam's Ruba'iyyat

Farzad Sharifian

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review


This study is the first of its kind in applying the emerging field of cultural linguistics to research on poetry. It does so by exploring conceptualizations that underline a number of quatrains from Khayyam's Ruba'iyyat.1 In particular, it focuses on quatrains that reflect themes regarding the brevity of life, living for the moment, predestination, and mysteries of existence. The analyses presented in this article reveal that conceptualizations that underlie these quatrains reflect both idiosyncratic (individual-specific) and cultural conceptualizations as well as conceptualizations reflecting Khayyam's milieu. The identified conceptualizations foreground some influences from a number of religious/cultural traditions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)21-39
Number of pages19
JournalInternational Journal of Persian Literature
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • Cultural linguistics
  • Khayyam
  • Poetry
  • Quatrain
  • Ruba'iyyat

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