Kamal Mazhar Ahmad (1937-2011)


Professor Kamal Mazhar Ahmad (Kurdish: Kemal Mezher Ehmed کەماڵ مەزهەر ئەحمەد) was an eminent Kurdish historian, born on the 14th of February 1937, in the village of Axjelar, located in Baban province in Kurdistan. His early life unfolded amidst the turbulent pages of Iraqi history, as General Abdul Karim Qassem ascended to power through a military coup. Kamal’s thirst for knowledge led him to complete his college education in Silémaní and pursue his undergraduate studies in history at the University of Baghdad in 1959. Driven by a deep passion for historical research, he embarked on postgraduate studies in the Soviet Union, where he eventually attained his Ph.D. in history from the prestigious Russian Institute for Oriental Studies in 1969.

Being among the first generation of Iraqis to pursue postgraduate studies in the Soviet Union, Kamal Mazhar Ahmad played a pivotal role upon his return to Iraq in 1970. He actively contributed to the institutionalization of academic disciplines and institutions and served as a vital link between Iraqi Kurdish and Soviet academic circles.

Commencing his academic career as a lecturer at Baghdad University in 1970, Kamal soon rose to prominence and became a professor in the early 1981. During his tenure as a lecturer and later as a professor, he nurtured and mentored countless students, leaving an indelible mark on their academic journeys. Additionally, he played a significant role as the chief secretary in the “Kurdish Scientific Society (KSS)” (Kurdish: Korrí Zanyarí Kurd) from 1971 to 1975, actively contributing to the academic and cultural development of the Kurdish community in Baghdad.

Throughout the years, Prof. Kamal Mazhar Ahmad continued to dedicate himself to teaching and research, lecturing at the University of Baghdad, University of Mustansiriyah, and the Arab Research Institution. His passion for Kurdish history extended beyond Iraq’s borders, as he actively engaged with the Kurdish Union Writer and Kurdish Institution in Paris.

As an accomplished historian, Prof. Kamal Mazhar Ahmad authored numerous books on Kurdish history, published in both Kurdish and Arabic, with some works translated into English, further enriching the understanding of the region’s historical narrative.

Tragically, on the 16th of March 2021, Professor Kamal Mazhar Ahmad passed away in a hospital in Bonn, Germany and then transferred to in Silémaní, leaving behind an enduring and profound legacy in Kurdish historiography. His invaluable contributions to academia, commitment to historical research, and dedication to nurturing future generations of scholars have solidified his position as a prominent figure in the annals of Kurdish history and scholarship. His enduring impact continues to inspire and guide scholars and researchers in their pursuit of understanding the rich tapestry of Kurdish heritage and history.

In a heartfelt tribute to honor the enduring legacy of their esteemed mentor and teacher, a group of Professor Kamal Mazhar Ahmad’s graduated students embarked on a remarkable endeavor in 2023. With deep reverence for his contributions to Kurdish historiography and an unwavering commitment to preserving his invaluable work, this dedicated group undertook the task of republishing his collective works in a comprehensive 10-volume series, (click to view their announcement).


  1. Renaissance with another discussion, third edition 2006 Sulaimani, In Kurdish
  2. Kurdish and Azerbaijani Liberation Struggle in Iran, 2004 Erbil, In Kurdish
  3. Kurdish People’s History – Volume 2, 2001 Erbil, In Kurdish
  4. 1925 Uprising in Kurdistan, Turkey, 2001, In Arabic
  5. Pages in Contemporary Iraq History, 1987 Baghdad, In Arabic
  6. Consist Book of Kurdish People’s History – Volume 1, 1985 Baghdad, In Kurdish
  7. Studies in Modern and Contemporary Iranian History, 1985 Baghdad, In Arabic
  8. About the cut-off issue between the Kurds, A. Shamilov, translated by Kamal Mazhar Ahmad, 1984 Baghdad, In Arabic
  9. Women in History: A Brief Historical and Social Discussion, 1981 Baghdad, In Kurdish
  10. The Iraqi Business Level: Formation and Beginnings of the Movement, 1981 Baghdad, In Arabic
  11. Comprehending of truth; Place in Kurdish Journalism, 1978 Baghdad, In Kurdish
  12. The Role of the Kurdish People in the Twentieth Iraqi Revolution, 1978 Baghdad, In Arabic
  13. Twentieth Revolution in the Soviet Enlightenment, 1977 Baghdad, In Arabic
  14. Kurdistan in the Years of the First World War, 1977 Baghdad, In Arabic
  15. Kirkuk and its followers: the rule of history and conscience: a study and documentation of the Kurdish issue in Iraq, In Arabic

Complete list with option to download at drkamal.com

  • People in the image above, from left:
    Shekroyé Xudo, Kinyazé Íbrahim, Kemal Mezher Ehmed, Elíyí Evdilrehman, Hejar Mukritaní, Evdile Bala, Jelilé Jelíl,
    Moskow, 1960

Further study:

  1. Ruwange, a TV interview with Dr Kamal Mazhar Ahmad on 10th of June 2007
  2. Dr Kamal, at drkamal.com

This biography was prepared by Dilan M R Roshani.

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