Iranian and Diasporic Literature in the 21st Century

A Critical Study


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About the Book

The most populous Islamic country in the Middle East, Iran is rife with contradictions, in many ways caught between the culture and governments of the Western—more dominant and arguably imperalist—world and the ideology of conservative fundamentalist Islam. This book explores the present-day writings of authors who explore these oppositional forces, often finding a middle course between the often brutal and demonizing rhetoric from both sides. To combat how the West has falsely generalized and stereotyped Iran, and how Iran has falsely generalized and stereotyped the West, Iranian and diasporic writers deconstruct Western caricatures of Iran and Iranian caricatures of the West. In so doing, they provide especially valuable insights into life in Iran today and into life in the West for diasporic Iranians.

About the Author(s)

Daniel Grassian lives in Chico, California.

Bibliographic Details

Daniel Grassian

Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 280
Bibliographic Info: notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2013
pISBN: 978-0-7864-7272-7
eISBN: 978-1-4766-0104-5
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Introduction 1
1. The Personal and the Political: Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis and Persepolis 2 19
2. Muslims and Jews in Contemporary Iran: Dalia Sofer’s The Septembers of Shiraz 45
3. The Iranian-American Exile and the Exiled Iranian: Porochista Khakpour’s Sons and Other Flammable Objects 63
4. Savior or Villain? The Case of Azar Nafisi’s Reading Lolita in Tehran 88
5. Next Generation Iranian-American Memoir Writers: Azadeh Moaveni and Firoozeh Dumas 107
6. From Inside the Walls of Evin Prison: Contemporary Iranian Prison Narratives 137
7. Censorship in Iran: Shahriar Mandanipour’s Censoring an Iranian Love Story 167
8. Contemporary Iranian and Iranian Diasporic Poetry 189
9. Alternative Means of Communication: Iranian Blogs 215
Conclusion 233
Chapter Notes 239
Works Cited 263
Index 271

Book Reviews & Awards

  • “Recommended”—Choice
  • “Grassian proposes that one of the best ways to combat the demonization of Iranians by Western powers is through the study of literature”—Reference & Research Book News.