An Iranian student visiting Isfahan's Masjid-e Shah, or Shah Mosque, also known as the Imam Mosque, takes advantage of the mosque's excellent acoustics to sing a brief and lovely song. [more inside]
The paintings commissioned by Akbar and Jahangir were a blend of Western iconography with Indian and Islamic elements. [more inside]
A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night is not your average vampire flick. For one, it features a who's who of Iranian actors (all speaking Persian), with various bits of the [Inland/]Southern California landscape serving as stand-ins for Iran. Plus, there's the stripped-down storytelling and the fusion of styles. It's been billed as the first "Iranian vampire Western."Join director Ana Lily Amirpour for Q&A on Iranian vampires and weird SoCal towns and learn more about her feminist horror film that turns horror film (and every day) tropes on their heads. [more inside]
You send us your most ephemeral and worthless communications, and we'll carefully transcribe them into the most long-lasting medium known to man - a clay tablet. It's Dumb Cuneiform.
In the wake of the murder of Shayan Mazroei by a white supremacist gang member in Orange County, Negeen Sadeghi makes the argument a lot of young Iranian-Americans are having with their elders. We are not white by American standards. We never were.
Hello. This year's Supreme Cat Show is taking place in Birmingham, England. The one-day show is one of the largest cat fancy competitions in Europe with over one thousand cats being exhibited. Observe Norwegian Forest Cat 'Kattjeules Tinkerbell', while Kirsty, who was at the event showing her Persian cat, said grooming the long-haired cat to get him show-ready was a lot of work and takes 20-30 minutes a day. In 2011 the process paid of for Mrs Murray and her moggie Mr Bojangles (whose show name is “Imperial Grand Premier & Supreme Kitten Isadoryou Mr Bojangles”) won the kitten category.
Though it is common to lament the shortcomings of reading an important work in any language other than the original and of the “impossibility” of translation, I am convinced that works of philosophy (or literature for that matter — are they different?) in fact gain far more than they lose in translation. [more inside]
The Global Language Online Support System (or GLOSS), produced by the Defense Language Institute in sunny Monterey, CA, offers over six thousand free lessons in 38 languages from Albanian to Uzbek, with particular emphasis on Chinese, Persian, Russian, Korean, and various types of Arabic. The lessons include both reading and listening components and are refreshingly based on real local materials (news articles, radio segments, etc.) rather than generic templates. [more inside]
The Princeton Shahnama Project is an "archive of book paintings--commonly known as Persian Miniatures--that were created to illustrate scenes from the Persian national epic, the Shahnama (the Book of Kings). The Shahnama is a poem of some 50,000 couplets that was composed by Abu'l Qasim Firdausi over a period of several decades in the late tenth and early eleventh centuries. The core of this archive is a fund of 277 illustrations from five illustrated manuscripts of the Shahnama that are housed in Princeton University's Firestone Library." The site also has the complete Shahnama in the Warner & Warner translation but here's another translation by Helen Zimmern [more inside]
Maz Jobrani Iranian Stand Up Comedian...no, we are Persian like the cat, meow, and we are the other white people. Great standup that pokes at all the stereotypes with a smart, fun, warm and spot on approach. You Tube performances...Previously tangent on MeFi by turbanhead
Masterpieces of Persian Painting "The atrocity of raging wars, the fainting of Leili (the beloved) and Majnoun (the lover) and the Prophet Mohammad’s (PBUH) ascension to the celestial sphere while floating in light—all reflect the reality and image of the pure heart of the artists who viewed the world, its Creator and creatures with love." [via]
According to Persian mythology, God is a painter who has painted the world with his kelk. More Persian calligraphy here.
Is a government-sponsored Web any kind of Web at all? Iranians will soon find out, including MeFite hoder, prominently featured in the linked piece (and, worrisomely, recipient of his very own death threat this week). More information on Iranian and Persian bloggers here.
Iranian vice-president is blogging. Mohammad Ali Abtahi is perhaps the only major politician who publishes his personal diary, and his secretly taken photos from official meetings (e.g. the ousted president of Georgia, Eduard Shevardnadze) on his weblog, which is unfortunately only in Persian. (via iranFilter)
So have you heard the one about the Golden Persian Princess Mummy? Discovered in October by Pakistani police during a murder investigation of an antiquities smuggler, this story has only gotten weirder. Said to be 2,600-years-old, the body of a young woman has been preserved using the Egyptian mummification process but bears cuneiform inscriptions in Old Persian: "I, daughter of Xerxes, the great king, I am Ruduamna". Since its discovery, the governments of Iran and Afghanistan have each claimed ownership of the mummy and all three countries are now engaged in a bitter war of claim and counter-claim. Now some experts are starting to say that the whole thing looks like it's just an elaborate hoax.