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Pahlavi, Muhammad Reza Shah

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The Oxford Dictionary of Islam What is This? Covers the religious, political, and social spheres of global Islam in the modern world

    Pahlavi, Muhammad Reza Shah

    (d. 1980 )

    Last ruling monarch of the Iranian Pahlavi dynasty. Placed on the throne by the British and Russians in 1941 and again in 1953 by the British and Americans, leading to charges that he served foreign, rather than Iranian national, interests. Implemented the “White Revolution,” designed to secularize, modernize, and develop Iran economically and socially. Particularly emphasized the need for land reform and expansion of women's participation in Iranian society. Criticized by Ayatollah Khomeini for alleged worship and imitation of the West and emphasis on continuity with pre-Islamic rule and history at the expense of Islamic heritage. Overthrown and exiled in the 1979 Islamic revolution.

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