Four years ago, today, the NanoWisdoms Archive of Imamat Speeches, Interviews and Writings was given special permission by Aiglemont to publish His Highness the Aga Khan’s speeches. One key objective and reason for establishing the Archive was to create a comprehensive and authoritative, professional reference resource of the Aga Khan’s wisdom for scholars. It is, therefore, with great satisfaction and pride that we can announce today that the Archive has started to achieve this objective and is now being cited as a source in academic papers and books published by respected Ismaili scholars — including those from the Institute of Ismaili Studies, Carleton University and Sacred Web. While at Harvard University, the Archive was even listed as a resource for a graduate level course on Ismailism.

Below we provide a summary of some of these citations as well as the scholars’ comments about the NanoWisdoms Archive, which they describe as “indispensable,” “invaluable,” an “absolute necessity,” “fantastic,” “unique,” “professional” and “the best resource to conduct research into the speeches, interviews and writings” of the Aga Khans.

These recognitions and accolades, by the Ismaili academic community, are tangible demonstrations of their confidence in the Archive, confirming it as an invaluable and unique resource which all — especially Ismailis — may rely on with confidence. The recognitions are also an indisputable validation of the importance of the project for the community and why we view them as our most important achievement to date.

Dr. Daryoush Mohammad Poor
Institute of Ismaili Studies, London, UK
Author, Authority without Territory

Published last year, Dr Mohammad Poor’s highly regarded and much anticipated book, Authority without Territory — the first study of the Imamat in contemporary times, examines the connection between the concept of authority and the transformation of the Ismaili Imamat. Chapter 3, The Aga Khan: A Visionary Leader, outlines many of the Aga Khan’s perspectives, relying extensively on the Aga Khan’s speeches and interviews. Below are Dr Mohammad Poor’s noteworthy remarks about the Archive:

The NanoWisdoms website is an indispensable online resource for any scholar who is interested in primary literature of modern Nizari Ismailism. It is strictly an archive of available interviews and speeches of Aga Khan III and Aga Khan IV covering almost anything which has been in the public domain. The website is designed in a professional manner and it is easy to access with fantastic sections and themes which is a truly unique characteristic of this website. It is an invaluable online resource, compared to any other in the breadth of its coverage.

M. Ali Lakhani
Editor, Sacred Web – A Journal of Tradition and Modernity

Highly praised by eminent scholars and personalities — including His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales, Karen Armstrong, Seyyed Hossein Nasr and Houston — Sacred Web is regarded as the premier journal devoted to the study of tradition. In Living the Ethics of One’s Faith: The Aga Khan’s Integral Vision (Volume 34, Winter 2014), Sacred Web’s Editor, Mr Lakhani, analyses in depth a question the Aga Khan posed in 2006: “How, in an increasingly cynical time, can we inspire people to a new set of aspirations — reaching beyond rampant materialism, the new relativism, self-serving individualism, and resurgent tribalism.” From a comprehensive collection of quotes from the Aga Khan’s speeches and interviews, Lakhani demonstrates how the Aga Khan’s interpretation of Islam informs his ethical and moral compass. Below are Mr Lakhani’s kind remarks about the Archive:

The NanoWisdoms Archive is an invaluable resource for research, especially as it has compiled a database in a single, user-friendly space information which is sometimes difficult to access. The search capabilities include key word and topic searches, making the web site a useful portal for gaining quick access to excerpts of speeches and interviews of His Highness the Aga Khan.

Khalil Andani
CA-CPA, MTS (Islamic Studies, Harvard)
Doctor of Philosophy Candidate — Islamic Studies
Harvard University

In 2014 Harvard University offered a graduate level course on Ismailism for which the NanoWisdoms Archive was listed as a resource for students. Mr Andani, who provided research assistance in the design of the course and was also its Teaching Assistant, offered the following high praise of the Archive:

The NanoWisdoms Archive is the best resource to conduct research into the speeches, interviews and writings of His Highness Aga Khan IV and his predecessor Sir Sultan Muhammad Shah Aga Khan III. The search feature on the NanoWisdoms website is indispensable and allows researchers to access the most relevant content in the quickest amount of time. Additionally, Nano’s Extended Quotes have carefully curated much of the Aga Khan Speech content by theme. As a graduate student, I have used NanoWisdoms for several academic research projects concerning contemporary Ismaili thought and it is the first resource I consult for such work. NanoWisdoms curated content also formed part of the reading resources in Harvard’s recent course on Ismaili History and Thought in 2014. The NanoWisdoms Archive is an absolute necessity for anyone who wishes to conduct an intellectually and methodologically rigorous study of the contemporary Ismaili Imamat.

Dr Karim H. Karim
Professor, Communications
Carleton University, Canada

Dr Karim is a Professor at Carleton University’s School of Journalism and Communication, of which he was previously the Director. Currently, he is the Director of the Carleton Centre for the Study of Islam. Dr Karim has also served as a Director of the Institute of Ismaili Studies in London, UK and as a member of the Advisory Committee of the Aga Khan University’s Graduate School of Media and Communications, Nairobi, Kenya. In 2012, Dr Karim co-authored the paper Clash of Ignorance, published in the Global Media Journal, Volume 5, Issue 1. In the paper, citing NanoWisdoms as his source, he noted that “[o]f those who have referred to the clash of ignorance over the last decade, the Aga Khan has been the most persistent. Whereas this Muslim religious leader had raised issues related to the general problematic since the 1980s, he specifically began using the rubric of the clash of ignorance in 2002.”

PRAISE FOR THE ARCHIVE by others

In addition to academia, the NanoWisdoms Archive has become a trusted and highly praised source that is relied upon by the Jamat, many of the Jamati institutions and by those outside the Jamat. Below are excerpts from a few of their remarks posted to our Comments page:

This is a treasured gold mine and we deeply appreciate your efforts to bring this vision of ‘par excellence in communication’ to fruition…. Those of us used to exacting standards (such as the standards we practice in manned space and planetary missions), find the quality of your works truly comparable …
— Zul Dhanji

This website is amazing. Thank you for this wonderful site. You have made such a difference in the lives of Ismaili Muslims the world over…. Bravo for designing it.
— Almas Rajwani-Rawj

What an amazing achievement you have with this website.
— Fayaz Karim

I just wanted to drop a note of appreciation for this outstanding compilation in one place. It is an invaluable resource for both researchers (like myself) and people of the Ismaili faith.
— Zahir Ebrahim

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