Nahid Mozzaffari teaches Middle Eastern history in New York. Ahmad Karimi Hakkak is professor of Persian Literature at the University of Maryland.
This collection of short stories and poetry by Iranian writers highlights literary contributions from this culturally rich part of the world. An engaging but also disturbing picture of dangerous times in Iran during the late 1970s and 1980s, the book tackles controversial issues, ranging from religious freedom to misogyny to revolution to the oil trade. As compelling as their stories, the writers are an eclectic mix: a good balance of male and female, including various scholars, a former judge, a filmmaker, political activists, and artists. Among them are Hushing Golshirir ("The Victory Chronicle of the Magi"), imprisoned because one of his novels was perceived to be critical of the Shah of Iran. Moniru Ravanipur's unsettling "Satan's Stones" reminds the reader of the cost of pursuing purity. Ravanipur gently reminds the reader that such acts remain very much a part of cultures around the world. Literature from this region of the world is hard to come by, and this collection of prose and poetry is both timely and well written. Recommended for academic and public libraries, as it will add diversity to any collection.-Valeda F. Dent, Hunter Coll., New York Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.