Peter Smith. The Baha’i Faith: A Short History
The Baha’i Faith: A Short History. By Peter Smith. Oxford: Oneworld, 1999 (1st published under the title A Short History of the Baha’i Faith in 1996). Also available as an ebook.
Pt. I. THE BABI RELIGION, 1844-53.
- The Islamic and Iranian background.
- The emergence of the Babi movement.
- The development of a new religion.
- Conflict and collapse, 1848-53.
Pt. II. THE ESTABLISHMENT OF THE BAHA’I FAITH.
- The writings and teachings of Baha’u’llah.
- Baha’i communities, 1866-1921.
Pt. III. THE BAHA’I FAITH SINCE 1922.
- Shoghi Effendi.
- The Universal House of Justice.
- Baha’i communities, 1922 to the present.
B. Some Review/essay questions (Conclusion only):
- Is it true that the Babi-Baha’i movement has developed from messianic Shi’ism to a world religion? If so, how?
- What have been the major geocultural and culural breakthroughs in the expansion of the Babi-Baha’i movements, and why have these breakthroughs been significant?
- By what means has the Baha’i movement maintained its unity despite geographical expansion and changes in leadership?
- What are the main points of similarity and dissimilarity between the Babi and Baha’i religions?
- What were the author’s  predictions for the future development of the Baha’i Faith? Do you agree with them? Discuss.