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5 minutes with Iranian women: what is the status of women artists in Iran?


More than 80 Iranian cultural figures are calling for the release of jailed fellow artists and the review of the verdicts handed down to them, RFE/RL's Radio Farda reports.

The writers, poets, painters, photographers, actors, and musicians say in a statement that so many cultural figures are being held in Iranian jails that some prisons could be called "the house of artists."

The statement, published on the opposition website Jaras on September 12, specifically criticizes the detention of actress Marzieh Vafamehr, actor Ramin Parchami, directors Jafar Panahi, Mohammad Rasoulof and Mahnaz Mohammadi, actress Pegah Ahangarani, and photojournalist Maryam Majd, some of whom are still being held in prison.

Parchami was arrested in Tehran on February 14 during the protests in solidarity with the democratic uprisings in Egypt and Tunisia. He is being held in Tehran's Evin prison.

Vafamehr was taken into custody in July. Her husband, Nasser Taghvai, a prominent film director and screenwriter, told Radio Farda at the time that the charges against her were nonpolitical and are related to the movie "My Tehran For Sale," in which she played the lead role. Taghvai said Vafamehr is being held at Gharchak prison in a Tehran suburb.

The signatories to the statement include novelist Shahrnoush Parsipour, poet Majid Nafisi, cartoonist Mana Neyestani, and photographer Hassan Sarbakhshian.




Omid's picture

we are nobody without art!

banding art in a society is like suffocating its soul..We are nobody without art. Art gives us hope, taste of beauty and beast, a dark and light. It paints the pain that people suffer, it screams the voice of those who have never been heard and nurtures our ability to dream.


Akech's picture

A wise sage once told me, Art

A wise sage once told me, Art is one profession whereby mistakes are exposed unlike other professions, a mirror or reflection of society and your concerns are quite alarming. I wish i had a better way of helping but please keep on advocating for their rights.

All the best,

Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies.

Omid's picture

just a little bit!

Thank you dear Monica. You are right, we should never lose our faith in small light that we see at the end of the tunnel. As long as we leave this world a little bit better and not let ignorance and indifference fill our heart, we have done our parts.


Greengirl's picture

Yes Omid!

Life ceases when one stops dreaming, speaking,listening,sharing and taking action. For all it is worth, like the Iranian Art Figures calling for the release of their colleagues, Women must rise up and speak for their fellow women who are yet to find their voices. I know some day, women will get to the promised land!


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