The Iranian Times

Thursday December 30, 1999 / Dey 10, 1378, No. 878

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Sure, it's very possible
Active resistance to strict hejab rules

By Dokhi Fassihian
December 30, 1999
The Iranian

Second and last part of an article on personal experiences with women's public appearance in Iran.

During my nine months in Iran, I went to airports and traveled on domestic flights with sandals, painted toenails, makeup, and a revealing hejab and was questioned only once at Mashad's airport. A female security guard asked me to button my top button and pull forward my head scarf. I ignored her instructions and only acted like I was readjusting my roosari. As I headed toward the curtain, she called me back.

"Wait, I asked you to close your button."

"Thanks for your concern, but I'm hot and more comfortable this way," I said softly.

"I understand, but it's not possible, is it?"

With a surge of bravery, I smiled sweetly and took her on.

"Sure it is, it is very possible." >>> GO TO FEATURE


Not so fast
Similarities in Christian-Persian traditions may not be what they seem

By Reza Ordoubadian
December 30, 1999
The Iranian

Even though the Gospel of Matthew passingly mentions "the wise men from the east," none of the other gospels, nor the rest of the New Testament, mentions the "Magi." It seems that, through the ages, the idea has caught on because it lends itself to wonderful theatricality. It is true that the origin of the word "magi, plural-magus, singular=a magician, a man of skills" is from the Old Persian (Avestan) word /maguS/ (magush), referring to the Zoroastrian priests, it was borrowed by the Greeks and then by the Romans (/magos/ and /magus/) long before the advent of Christianity.

Since borrowing of words (not necessarily the content because each borrowed word is normalized in the language which has borrowed it) is a natural process of language making; as such the word must be accepted as a Greek-o-Roman lexicon, and not Persian >>> GO TO FEATURE


Iran's Young Are Restless Under Islam
Teenagers Lament Strict Social Laws

By Afshin Molavi
The Washington Post
December 28, 1999

TEHRAN-The music of Latin pop sensation Ricky Martin filled the room and the DJ exhorted the crowd to dance. "C'mon, everybody," he yelled into the microphone. "It's time to go-go-go," he boomed, mimicking lyrics from a popular Martin song.

Within minutes, the intricate red and gold Persian carpet on the floor was packed with young, hip-shaking, twenty-something Iranians. "Way to go," cheered Keyvan, the disc jockey with long, gelled hair. "I don't want to see anyone sitting down!" >>> FULL STORY



I am the director of a large, relatively new contemporary art gallery in the Boston area ( I am interested in exhibiting the work of several contemporary Iranian artists, but know little about how to conceptually market and research such a show. I am asking for any ideas you might have or thoughts about the benefits/drawbacks of marketing a show based on the Iranian Identity of the artists rather than the art itself. Any thoughts or ideas are very very welcome.

Joanna Miller
Director, Gallery Bershad
Tel: (617) 629 9400 (Ext 3)

More Letters

* Celebrate creativity

Ramin Abhari writes: I really enjoy the diversity of features in Ms Afsari's bit on dating was fun to read ["The sixth man"]. Same with Mr. Samiei's moon landing memories ["A moon of our own"]. So it was a bit disapporinting to read letters bashing these creative endavors ["Chossi aamadan", "Unsympathtic"].

Perhaps an unintended function of this web-site is to be an open-laboratory where creative and literary Iranians can post their work, regardless of its "appropriateness" -- whether it is a piece which would ultimately find its "English-media home" in Cosmopolitan or The New York Times.

Let us celebrate Iranian creativity in all its incarnations at home and abroad and offer our opposing thoughts as constructive criticism and fuel for lighting our own creative fires!

* Dastmal-e Hareer

Simin Habibian writes: Referring to the Nostalgia photo on December 27, if this is the same Haleh, who did the commercial for Dastmaal-e Hareer tissues ("Khanooma, Aaaqaayoon, Dastmaal e man Hareere..."), she lives in California.

She used to be a sidekick in Fereydoun Farrokhzad's TV show in California. Then she had her own TV show. At the moment Haleh and her husband run a 24-hour satellite TV company called Pars.

* Academic: Best Dissertation of the Year

The Foundation for Iranian Studies is pleased to announce that the Committee on the Selection of Best Dissertation of the Year on a Topic of Iranian Studies of the Foundation for Iranian Studies has chosen Dr. Negar Mottahedeh's dissertation "Representing the Unpresentable: Historical Images of Reform from the Qajars to the Islamic Republic of Iran," submitted to the Faculty of the Graduate School of the University of Minnesota, as the recipient of the Foundation's annual Ph.D. dissertation award for the academic year 1998-1999 >>> FULL TEXT


Books of the Week

* Saaniyeh-yeh aakhar (1999)
Y2K issues in Iran
By Dr. Ali Parandeh

* Barandeh-haa ham baazandeh-and (1999)
A memoir by a former mayor of Tehran, with photos
By Ahmad Nafisi

* Jazireh sargardaani (2nd edition, 1998)
By Simin Daneshvar

* Mumia va assal (1996)
By Shahriar Mandanipour

* Mehr-e giaah (1998)
ByAmir Hassan Cheheltan

See more Iranian books for sale


Video of the Week

Through the olive trees

This is Abbas Kiarostami's most romantic film (English subtitles). It is the third part of a trilogy set in northern Iran. For other Kiarostami videos, click here.

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Public hanging at dawn for man who killed Islamic militiaman

TEHRAN, Dec 29 (AFP) - The young man who murdered a member of Iran's volunteer Islamic Basiji militia is to be hanged in public at dawn Sunday, a newspaper reported. The Iran daily said Wednesday that Morteza Amini-Moghadam would be hanged at Imam Hossein Square in the southeast of the capital after being found guilty of the stabbing death of 22-year-old Basiji militiaman Hadi Mohebi >>> FULL TEXT

Constitutional body rejects law increasing its own powers

TEHRAN, Dec 29 (AFP) - An Iranian supervisory council on Wednesday rejected parts of a law that would have given it increased powers to oversee February's key parliamentary elections, state radio said. The 12-member Council of Guardians said two articles in the legislation, approved by the conservative- dominated parliament on Tuesday, were "against the constitution and Islam," the radio said >>> FULL TEXT

Interior ministry rejects 400 candidates for MP elections

TEHRAN, Dec 29 (AFP) - Iran's interior ministry has rejected some 400 candidates hoping to stand in February's key parliamentary elections, the press reported here Wednesday. Pro-reform papers said leading reformist Abdollah Nuri, who was jailed five years for spreading anti-Islamic propaganda last month, would still be allowed to run. The report could not be immediately confirmed >>> FULL TEXT

Elite force says officer killed in attack: paper

TEHRAN, Dec 29 (AFP) - Iran's elite Revolutionary Guards said a top officer was killed in an attack by the outlawed armed opposition People's Mujahedeen, a newspaper reported Wednesday. General Mohammad-Jafar Asadi, deputy commander for Guards ground forces, told the Aftab-e-Emrouz paper that Ali Saki was killed when a Mujahedeen fighter tried to throw a grenade during an attack. He did not elaborate >>> FULL TEXT

Group appeals on web for funds to carry out Rushdie death sentence

TEHRAN, Dec 28 (AFP) - A private Iranian group is to launch an appeal on the internet for money to implement a religious death sentence on British writer Salman Rushdie, the Kayhan newspaper reported Tuesday. The founder of Iran's Islamic Republic, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, issued a religious decree, or fatwa, in 1989 condemning Rushdie to death for his novel "The Satanic Verses," which he judged blasphemous against Islam >>> FULL TEXT

OPEC output cuts will probably remain after March: Iran oil minister

TEHRAN, Dec 28 (AFP) - OPEC will likely maintain oil production cuts after the group's regular March meeting, Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh said, the official news agency IRNA reported. "I think the member states will probably develop an understanding to continue the production cut for some time" after the March meeting, Zanganeh said in a press conference here Monday >>> FULL TEXT

Iran publishes first human development report

TEHRAN, Dec 28 (AFP) - Iran has published its first national human development report, recommending far-reaching changes in many areas of society. The 150-page report was produced by the country's Plan and Budget Organization in cooperation with the United Nations office in Iran >>> FULL TEXT

Box office

Tehran (Asr-e Azadegan) - Latest movie box office sales: Majid Majidi's "Rang-e Khodaa" ("Color of Paradise") seems to be leading the pack >>> FULL TEXT IN PERSIAN

Mr. Ripley

Tehran (Asr-e Azadegan) - "The Talented Mr. Ripley" has recently been released in American cinemas (by the way, it's a very good film). But the book is making news in Iran. It was translated a few years ago but censors at the Culture Ministry have not given their seal of approval, so says the translator >>> FULL TEXT IN PERSIAN


Tehran (Iran Varzeshi) - Hadi Tabatabaie will start as Iran's goalkeeper in the friendly matches in the U.S. >>> FULL TEXT IN PERSIAN

He's back?

Tehran (Iran Varzeshi) - After all the talk that he was about to quit soccer, Ahmadreza Abedzadeh stood in goal for Persepolis in the match against Sepahan >>> FULL TEXT IN PERSIAN

Chess champ

Tehran (Iran Varzeshi) - Atoussa Pour-Kashian won the Asian chess title for the girls under-12 age group. Meanwhile the next Asian women's chess championships will be held in Tehran >>> FULL TEXT IN PERSIAN


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