A World Between Poems, Stories and Essays by Iranian-Americans

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Reading dates

Edited by Persis M. Karim and Mohammad Mehdi Khorrami
(George Braziller, Inc., 1999)
352 pages
 

This passionate collection of poems, stories and essays is the first published anthology of writings by Iranian immigrants and first generation Iranian-Americans. Wide-ranging and deeply personal, these pieces explore the Iranian community's continuing struggle to understand what it means to be Iranian in America. (See reviews)

Many of the contributors (listed below) arrived in North America as exiles and refugees of the 1979 revolution; others are immigrants who left their homeland for non-political reasons. The Iranian-American community today numbers more than one million, with the largest populations centered in Los Angeles, Houston, Washington, D.C., and New York.

The never-before-published pieces collected here come together to present a rich, humanizing portrait of a growing community that Americans have tended to view negatively. Many of the selections intimate reflections on the pain of being alienated from the language, history, and geography of one's childhood and fondest memories. Other pieces grapple with the complexities and ambiguities of cultural and personal identity, particularly for first generation Iranian-Americans.

Iranian-Americans, like any other immigrant community, must face the ongoing negotiation between past and present, their native home and their adopted home. A WORLD BETWEEN gives voice to their unique and moving stories.

For further information and ordering: contact George Braziller, Inc. Publishers at (212) 889-0909 or FAX (212)689-5405 (checks and money orders only--$3 shipping) cloth $30.00 isbn 0-8076-1443-2 paper $17.50 isbn 0-8076-1445-9. The book isn't scheduled to hit the warehouse until May 1999, so this may be best time to pre-order to get the discount. Amazon.com is currently offering a 30% discount-- check this out as well on their website).

Contacting the co-editors:

* Persis Karim ([email protected] or [email protected])
Tel: (510) 644-3036.

* Mohammad Mehdi Khorrami ([email protected])
Tel: (212) 998-8749

Reading dates

Sunday, June 13th : Barnes and Noble Bookstore, Walnut Creek, CA

Tuesday, June 15th: Capitola Book Cafe, Capitola, CA

Thursday, June 24th : BookPeople, Austin, Texas

Wednesday, June 30 : Books & Books, Coral Gables, Miami, FL

Friday, June 25th: University of Texas at Austin, Center for Middle Eastern Studies

Thursday, July 8th: Borders Bookstore, Coconut Grove, Miami, FL

Sunday, July 11th: Third Annual Evolving Perceptions Exhibit--Reading at 505 Gallery, Washington D.C.

Sunday, July 25th: Midnight Special Bookstore, Santa Monica, CA

Wednesday, July 28th: Modern Times Bookstore, San Francisco, CA

Tuesday, August 10th: Book Passages, Corte Madera, CA

Wednesday, August 18th: Barnes & Noble, New York, Union Square NY

Sunday, September 12th: City Lights Bookstore, San Francisco, CA

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Contributors to "A World Between"

Azadeh Farahmand
Tara Fatemi
Parinaz Eleish
Zjaleh Hajibashi
Zara Houshmand
Jahanshah Javid
Tara Kai
Persis M. Karim
Firoozeh Kashani-Sabet
Laleh Khalili
Nika Khanjani
Farnoosh Moshiri
Siamak Namazi
Sanaz Nikaein
Maryam Ovissi
Saideh Pakravan
Nahid Rachlin
Nasrin Rahimieh
Fereydoun Safizadeh
Arash Saedinia
Mariam Salari
Solmaz Sharif
Reza Shirazi
Nazanin Sioshansi
Sassan Tabatabai
Ramin M. Tabib
Roxanne Varzi
Michael Walker / Reza Ashrah
Katayoon Zandvakili
Ali Zarrin
Shadi Ziaei

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Reviews

"The Iranian-American community has had extraordinary stories to tell since long before the Iranian Revolution in 1979, but those stories never really became public and Iranians often seemed the most invisible of new Americans. The generation of writers represented in this anthology, which has come of age since the revolution, is changing that. They are not just aware of themselves as writers with a new vision but also as observers of themselves with a palpable need to forge a public identity. The points of view collected in A WORLD BETWEEN are by turns confessional, lyrical, Whitmanesque, anecdotal, and Proustian, and they are haunted by a common project of recording a senstibility that simply has not existed on paper before."
-- Michael Beard, Professor of English, University of North Dakota and author of Hedayat's Blind Owl as a Western Novel

"In A WORLD BETWEEN many solitary voices belonging to American writers and poets of Iranian cultural background sing in unison for the first time. Together they form an artful chorus that articulates the challenges--and the great promise---of a brand new American subculture. A WORLD BETWEEN is a must for all public libraries; it should be required reading for all cross-cultural studies, and it is a welcome addition to our sources for understanding the nature and scope of diversity in American society at the start of the twenty-first century."
-- Ahmad Karimi-Hakak, Professor University of Washington

"A WORLD BETWEEN is a moving witness to the creativity of a new generation of Iranian-Americans."
-- Elizabeth W. Fernea, Professor of English and Middle Eastern Studies, University of Texas, author of Guests of the Sheik and In Search of Islamic Feminism

"These writers form one of the newest and richest strands in the tapestry of contemporary multicultural America. Their by turns raw and polished voices speak not only to their native land and their adopted home, but also, and more importantly, to an emerging transnational and global generation."
-- Hamid Naficy, Professor of Film and Media Studies, Rice University, editor of Home, Exile, Homeland: Film, Media, and the Politics of Place

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