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June 19-23, 2000 / Khordad 30-Tir 3, 1379

Books of the week

The Golden Age of Persian Art, 1501-1722 : 1501-1722
By Sheila R. Canby
2000, Harry N Abrams Publishers

From Horn Book: The golden age of Persian art was the era of the Safavid dynasty. In this time of dynamic religious and political developments, painting and textiles achieved new heights of brilliance and opulence, and architecture flourished with the growth of cities. This resplendent volume provides a chronological history of the reign of each successive Safavid shah, including that of Shah 'Abbas I, who came to the throne in 1588 >>> GO HERE

* Haft zan, haft daastaan
Seven stories by seven women

Forty Fortunes: A Tale of Iran
By Aaron Shepard
1999, Clarion Books

From Horn Book: Frustrated by her husband's meager earnings, Jamell convinces Ahmed to become a fortuneteller. After Ahmed unwittingly fools forty treasure thieves into believing he knows their identities, he is rewarded handsomely by the king. The story, adapted from a traditional Iranian folktale, is clever and funny, and the book is well designed: the text is ostensibly printed on scrolls, and the illustrations are the colors of gemstones >>> GO HERE

Comprehensive History of the Jews of Iran :
The Outset of the Diaspora

By Habib Levy
1999, Mazda Publishers

A reader writes: This is a fascinating history of the oldest Jewish community in the Diaspora. In an initial chapter,the author makes a credible case that the ten lost tribes of Israel are really the Jews of Kurdistan and other northern provinces of ancient Persia. Since Babylon was a Persian province for a thousamd years, the Babylonia talmud was really a product of Persia's Jewish community and Persia was the center of Jewish thought for a thousand years >>> GO HERE

Black on Black: Iran Revisited
By Ana M. Briongos
2000, Lonely Planet

From Booklist: When the shah of Iran was deposed in the late 1970s after 2,000 years of continuous government by shahs, it marked the beginning of a new era in everyday Iranian life as well as in politics. Since 1960 the Spanish author Briongos has made numerous pilgrimages to Iran. Her chief discovery is the Iranian belief in and practice of ketman, a traditional philosophy that allows its adherents to publicly renounce their innermost beliefs while remaining loyal to those beliefs anyway >>> GO HERE

Ancient Persia : From 550 Bc to 650 Ad
By Josef Wiesehofer
1999, I B Tauris & Co

A reader writes: A well researched book however the author seems to be confused with Zoraoastrainism and suffice to say that he refers in many places to Zoroastrian 'gods' while the religion is montheistic believing in Ahuramazda or the Wise Lord. >>> GO HERE

Being Modern in Iran
By Fariba Adelkhah
2000, Columbia University Press

What does it mean to be modern in Iran today? Can one properly speak of modernity in relation to what many consider to be the paradigmatic Islamic state? Since its1979 revolution seized the world´s attention, the Islamic Republic of Iran has remained a subject of misunderstanding, passion, and polemic, making these questions difficult to answer - or even to ask. This book - a study of Iran´s political culture in the broadest and deepest sense - looks into both of these questions by examining the tremendous changes taking place in Iran today >>> GO HERE

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