The week before self left for the UK, she attended a reading in Keplers in Menlo Park, featuring contributors to Tremors: New Fiction by Iranian American Writers, which was edited by Anita Amirrezvani and Persis Karim.
Self finally got around to starting it today. The Introductions quotes various contributors’ views on their Iranian heritage. Here are three:
Sholeh Wolpé: “I knew I was suffocating. I do and did understand the sudden madness that takes hold of young girls in societies where women, grossly oppressed, pour kerosene on themselves and strike a match. It is the madness of desperation. If all doors are shut in your face, if you have not even a single unbarred window to look out from, then death seems like the only salvation . . . “
Mehdi Tavana writes “about Iranians not only because I am one, but because our history is an epic tragedy, and I am attracted by sweeping narratives. Iran’s story is one of espionage, loss, betrayal, religious celebration, glorious celebration, bloody revolution, and tragic love that ‘dares not speak its name.’ Because I was raised in this country, I have the audacity to write stories and send them into the world and expect that people will read them. It is self-indulgent and it is bold. But what can I say?”
Shideh Etaat: “I spent most of my childhood embarrassed about my culture, and now as a writer I spend most of my energy trying to understand it.”
Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.