Septembers of Shiraz
One of the best things about these two week trips our family takes around the year end holidays is that I get to read books, something I’ve always loved to do and don’t make enough time for. Thankfully the Gotham Gal reads a book or two a week so I just ask her to recommend the best five books she’s read all year and I get some great reading in on vacation.
I just finished her first pick for me, called Septembers of Shiraz, a story about a jewish gem trader in Tehran who is imprisoned in the wake of the revolution. It’s a semi-autobiographical novel written by Dalia Sofer, whose own father was imprisoned and whose family left Iran when she was ten.
It’s a powerful novel in the vein of Kite Runner which is one of my favorite recent novels. This line, which I quoted on my tumblog a couple days ago, really sums up the story for me:
Back in his cell Isaac thinks of Reza and the
thousands of revolutionaries like him – men and women who thought they
were part of something big, much bigger than their daily lives – who
thought they were changing the course of history. And here they are,
having replaced crowns with turbans.
This whole literary propaganda against Iran, started with “Reading Lolita in Tehran” by Azar Nafisi who was my own professor in Tehran university. These books are certainly far from the reality and what Iranians are and have been experiencing now and then. Sentimentalization and hyperbole is the hallmarks of such works – due to clearly documented political agenda. Azar Nafisi for instance is the pin-up girl for the neo-con wackjobs of the New American Century folks.Having said that, books like any other businesses – same principle of supply and demand are in works here. The demand to bash Iran and Iranians are high enough these days – thanks to your incompetent and clueless administration run and manipulated by their corporate masters.So spare us with your not so subtle patronizing tone and enjoy your holidays.Cheers,Faroukh