Beyond the Book: Background information when reading Censoring an Iranian Love Story

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Censoring an Iranian Love Story

by Shahriar Mandanipour

Censoring an Iranian Love Story by Shahriar Mandanipour
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  • First Published:
    May 2009, 304 pages
    Paperback:
    Jun 2010, 304 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Karen Rigby

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Shariar Mandanipour
Shahriar MandanipourShariar Mandanipour's varied life began in the city of Shiraz, where he was born in 1956. In the 1970s, he participated in protests against the authoritarian rule of Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi; in the 80s, he volunteered in the Iran-Iraq war; and, since 2009, he has served as the chief editor for Asr-e Pandishanbeh (Thursday Evening), an Iranian literary magazine. According to Harvard University's biographical note, "this magazine was banned in Iran; in response, Mandanipour has taken considerable risks by speaking out against this injustice, giving interviews to Voice of America and other controversial (in Iran) media outlets."

Mandanipour's publications include numerous essays; a novel for children that won the Mehregan Award for the best Iranian children's novel of 2004; the short story collections The Eighth Day of the Earth, Violet Orient, Midday Moon, Mummy and Honey, Shadows of the Cave, Ultramarine Blue; and a novel in two parts, The Courage of Love. In 1998, he received the Golden Tablet Award for the best fiction of the past 20 years in Iran. Mandanipour is also a film critic, and winner of the 1994 Best Film Critique in Tehran. He is currently a visiting scholar at Harvard University and lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Censoring an Iranian Love Story, Mandanipour's first novel available in English, was translated by Sara Khalili, an editor and journalist who has previously translated many of his short stories. Khalili received a 2007 PEN Translation Fund Grant for her work on Mandanipour's Seasons of Purgatory.

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Article by Karen Rigby

This article was originally published in June 2009, and has been updated for the June 2010 paperback release. Click here to go to this issue.

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