All posts tagged: Iran

Review: Then the Fish Swallowed Him by Amir Ahmadi Arian

Book by AMIR AHMADI ARIAN

Reviewed by FEROZ RATHER

Review: Then the Fish Swallowed Him by Amir Ahmadi Arian

Amir Ahmadi Arians Then the Fish Swallowed Him is an unswerving portrayal of an individuals tormenting journey to self-realization in a totalitarian theocracy. By reproducing the minutiae of one mans stolen solitude, Arian has created a powerful critique not only of the Mullah-dominated politics of Iran, but also of the very nature of political life in this society. Arian, an Iranian novelist, translator, and journalist who currently lives in New York City, has in the past translated novels by E.L. Doctorow, Paul Aster, P.D. James, and Cormac McCarthy to Farsi, as well as written two novels and a book of nonfiction in his native language. Released in March of 2020 in the U.S., Then the Fish Swallowed Him is Arians debut novel in English.

The book begins amidst a raucous union strike near the Jannatabad Bus Terminal in the northwestern part of Tehran, when middle-aged bus driver Yunus Turabi watches Mahmoud Ahmadinejads plainclothes militiathe Basijis, a zealous bunch of young Revolutionary Armed Guardsviolently beat a woman. As the wife of an imprisoned activist is kicked in the ribs and flung on the ground, Yunuss fellow bus drivers scream and shout. During the ensuing clash with the police, who are shielding the Basijis, Yunus is jolted out of his humdrum existence and is spurred to action by his colleagues protests. But his punches, ecstatic and involuntary, are warded off with the blows of an electric baton. Numbed, he tears away from the crowd and hides on the roof of an empty bus.

Review: Then the Fish Swallowed Him by Amir Ahmadi Arian
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Public Survey

By NILUFAR KARIMI

Public surveillance footage of Tehran, Iran, depicting street stones

Tehran, Iran, through public surveillance footage

all begins slowly like anything else. night. two birds walk together through a cobblestone alley.
the rooster first, then the hen. if I were to invert this order, begin again. there is a pile of bags

a pile of white cloth sacks. the objects transform themselves as I write. two bicycle
tires over the sacks to restrain them. a waiting for the image to come from darkness.

Public Survey
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A Cave for Mithra

vessels on tile

By MOJGAN GHAZIRAD

When I heard ancient Iranians worshipped Mithra in subterranean caverns, my first reaction was: why would anyone worship Mithra in total darkness? Mithra, the god of heavenly light, who goes over the earth, all her breadth over, after the setting of the sun, touches both ends of this wide, round earth, whose ends lie afar, and surveys everything that is between the earth and the heavens.[1] In Mithraic belief, the God Mithra slays a bull to move the world and enlighten it with love. Followers pray and purify their souls in order to ascend to their heavenly place of origin.

A Cave for Mithra
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