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Azar Nafisi: Things I've Been Silent About

A family chronicle that will reflect on "a turbulent era in Iran's political and cultural history"

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Talk & Reception - Introduction

21 April 2009, 6:45 pm
Asia House, 63 New Cavendish Street, London W1G 7LP

Organised by

Asia House in association with Iran Heritage Foundation

Sponsored by

Standard Chartered Private Bank
Arts Council England
The Times


Azar Nafisi, author of the beloved international bestseller Reading Lolita in Tehran, now gives us a stunning personal story of growing up in Iran. Memories of her life lived in thrall to a powerful and complex mother are set against the background of the country's political revolution.

Reaching back in time to reflect on other generations in the Nafisi family, Things I've Been Silent About is a powerful historical portrait of a family that spans many periods of change leading up to the Islamic Revolution of 1978-79, which turned Nafisi's beloved Iran into a religious dictatorship.

Writing of her mother's historic term in Parliament, even while her father, once mayor of Tehran, was in jail, Nafisi explores the remarkable "coffee hours" her mother presided over, where at first women came together to gossip, to tell fortunes, and to give silent acknowledgment of things never spoken about, and which then evolved into gatherings where men and women would meet to openly discuss the unfolding revolution.

Things I've Been Silent About is, finally, a deeply personal reflection on women's choices, and on how the author found the inspiration for a different kind of life.

Azar Nafisi is an Iranian academic and writer who has resided in the United States since 1997 when she emigrated from Iran. Nafisi is currently a visiting Fellow and lecturer at the Foreign Policy Institute of Johns Hopkins University's School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) and serves on the Board of Trustees of Freedom House.

(Part of the Asia House Festival of Asian Literature)

Asia House, 63 New Cavendish Street, London W1G 7LP


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Tel: 020 7307 5454
In Person: Asia House, 63 New Cavendish Street, London W1G 7LP


Asia House, 63 New Cavendish Street, London W1G 7LP, Tel: + 44(20) 7307 5454, Fax: +44 (20) 7307 5459, Email:

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