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Missing Soluchby Mahmoud Dowlatabadi
Synopses & Reviews
"Within modern Persian literature, an outstanding master achievement."-Der Spiegel
This starkly beautiful novel examines the trials of an impoverished woman and her children living in a remote village in
The novel critically evokes the unfulfilled aspirations of modern
The Association ofAmerican Publishers'Freedom to Publish Committee joins in launching this book to support the publication of voices censored by the State Department's ban of books from the "Axis of Evil."
Mahmoud Dowlatabadiis one of his generation's most important writers. The author of numerous novels, plays, and screenplays, he is a leading proponent of social and artistic freedom in contemporary
Translator Kamran Rastegar, a professor of Persian and Arabic literature at the University of Edinburgh, England, specializes in modern Persian literature. Iranian-American, Rastegar has translated for Harper's Magazine, as well numerous academic and literary journals.
"This stark but engrossing portrait of contemporary rural Iran by Dowlatabadi, an acclaimed Iranian writer and outspoken proponent of artistic freedom, arrives under the auspices of the Association of American Publishers' Freedom to Publish Committee. A saga set in an isolated Iranian village, it concerns a family whose patriarch, Soluch, has recently disappeared, leaving his wife, two sons and one daughter desperate. The remaining family's struggle for survival runs smack up against a sinister plan from local wealthy landowners who are conspiring to usurp the remaining unclaimed land in the village — a barren, intractable plot known as 'God's Land' that has been traditionally tended by the poor. The scheme divides the family, as Mergan, the matriarch, clings ferociously to her portion, while her sons, Abbas and Abrau, sell off theirs for petty change. At age 12, Hajer, the daughter, is forced to marry an older man for sustenance; she is bound and raped on her wedding night and thereafter imprisoned in her husband's home. Mergan, who is also raped, toils to keep her house in order for the day that her beloved Soluch returns. The story is relentless, but beautifully and incisively rendered, and imbued throughout with hope." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
Perhaps the most important work in modern Iranian literature, this starkly beautiful novel examines the trials of an impoverished woman and her children living in a remote village in Iran, after the unexplained disappearance of her husband, Soluch.
Lyrical yet unsparing, the novel examines her life as she contends with the political corruption, authoritarianism, and poverty of the village. It follows her vacillations between love for Soluch and anger at his absence, and her struggle to raise her children without their father.
The novel critically evokes the unfulfilled aspirations of modern Iran, portraying a society caught between a past and a future that seem equally weighed down by injustice.
This landmark novel — the first ever written in the everyday language of the Iranian people — revolutionized Persian literature in its beautiful and daring portrayal of the life of a marginal woman and her struggle to survive.
About the Author
Mahmoud Dowlatabadi is one of his generation's most important writers. The author of numerous novels, plays and screenplays, he is a leading proponent of social and artistic freedom in contemporary Iran. His revered artistic stature has protected him from death threats and persecution by the government, and he continues to be one of Iran's most prolific and beloved writers. This is his first novel translated in English. He is also the author of The Colonel (Melville House 2012). He lives in Tehran.
Translator Kamran Rastegar teaches Arabic in the Department of German, Russian and Asian Languages and Literatures at Tufts University.
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