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Role of women in Iranian science fiction and fantasy

Over the last two decades, the publication and sale of science fiction and fantasy literature has increased significantly in Iran. For a long time, these books have more or less only involved a male...

Text: Mina Talebli November 29 2018

Go back to your house

The author, publisher and critic Fereshteh Ahmadi’s states in her essay that “vagueness” is a keyword for the understanding of contemporary stories by Iranian female authors. What is the situation for...

Text: Fereshteh Ahmadi November 29 2018

Language and rights in Iranian Queer community

Sina Kiani is a documentary filmmaker and photographer from Iran, with human rights and LGBT perspectives as main topics. For PEN/Opp Kiani gives an analysis of the situation for LGBT organisations in...

Text: Sina Kiani January 07 2018


Yasaman R. Choube was born in Iran and now lives in exile. For PEN/Opp she has written a moving story about love, oppression and loss.

Text: Yasaman R. Choube December 18 2017

Poems in exile

Iranian poet, LGBT and human rights activist Elham Malekpoor has published several collections of poetry, most of which have been censored in Iran. She particularly deals with child labour and queer...

Text: Elham Malekpoor December 16 2014

Before the lunar eclipse

Iran is a country full of paradoxes. While the state has enacted some of the strictest laws in the world when it comes to same-sex relationships, sex change for homosexuals has become a thriving...

Text: Ramesh Safavi December 16 2014

To write and to live in the shadow

The first blog was started in Iran in the beginning of 2001. Since then, the blog culture within the country has grown and there are over 70,000 blogs by Iranians, both inside and outside the country...

Text: Marzieh Rasouli May 06 2014

The Mullahs’ inroads into social media

Internet freedom is highly restricted in Iran. Low speed connections, blocked sites and internet blackouts are just a couple of examples of how the government attempts to strangle internet. An...

Text: Anonymous May 06 2014

Iran: The day we pack our bags

For many years, author Roya Zarrin held a popular yoga class in her hometown in Iran. But since it was also a place where forbidden literature could be discussed fairly openly, it attracted the...

Text: Roya Zarrin October 24 2013

What about democracy in Iran?

Sanctions against Iran tighten with every year that passes—all in an effort to force the regime to account for its nuclear program. How do the sanctions affect the Iranian people and their fight for...

Text: Trita Parsi June 10 2013


Author Saeed Tabatabaee was one year old when the Islamic Revolution took place. He belongs to the generation of young people who has grown up in the regime's big brother society—always guarded...

Text: Saeed Tabatabaee June 10 2013

Tehran girls just want to have fun

Over 30 years have passed since Iran's Islamic revolution. An entire generation of young women has grown up without knowing any other society than the one created by the conservative mullahs—a society...

Text: Mojgan Ayyari June 10 2013