Iran in Venice

The recent events in Iran seem to have increased the interest in all things Iranian--from books to exhibitions. The Venice Film Festival is featuring at least two Iranian films: the semi-documentary "Green Days"--which mixes real footage with the fictional story of a young female protagonist--and a film by the acclaimed artist Sherine Neshat, based on the novel "Women Without Men" by Shahrnush Parsipur. The latter is set in the 1950s, but Neshat in a press conference was at pains to point out its contemporary parallels:

“The images of the uprisings in the summer of 1953 have so much resemblance to what is going on this summer in Iran,” she told reporters, “and I think symbolically this film represents the Iranian struggle over time for democracy and freedom."

“People have changed, the dictators have changed in form and shape and ideology but the struggle continues.”


Ursula Lindsey

Ursula Lindsey is the managing editor of the Arabist blog. She writes about culture, education and politics in the Arab world. She lived in Cairo from 2002 to 2013 and got her start at the ground-breaking independent magazine Cairo Times. She was the culture editor of Cairo magazine in 2005-2006 and served as special projects editor at the independent news site Mada Masr in 2013-2014. She is the Chronicle of Higher Education's Middle East correspondent. She contributes to the BBC-PRI radio program The World, and has written for Newsweek, The New York Times, The New Yorker online, Bookforum and the blog of the London Review of Books.