Daneshvar's Playhouse

Overview

In this collection of short stories, Daneshvar captures the essence of a rich traditional culture undergoing change. A child is lost in Shiraz's exotic and crowded "Vakil Bazaar." "The Accident," a hilarious parody, portrays a young woman who forsakes husband, children, and home just to own a car. "The Playhouse" is a traditional theater where the play and the players act on many levels both real and fantastic. "The Traitor's Intrigue" enters the life of a middle-class couple and brilliantly shows how a colonel's...
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Overview

In this collection of short stories, Daneshvar captures the essence of a rich traditional culture undergoing change. A child is lost in Shiraz's exotic and crowded "Vakil Bazaar." "The Accident," a hilarious parody, portrays a young woman who forsakes husband, children, and home just to own a car. "The Playhouse" is a traditional theater where the play and the players act on many levels both real and fantastic. "The Traitor's Intrigue" enters the life of a middle-class couple and brilliantly shows how a colonel's allegiance passed from Shah to Khomeini. "To Whom Can I Say Hello?" tells of an old woman's memories, her life, love, tragic outcome, and eventual hope. "Loss of Jalal" is a moving chronicle of the final days of Jalal Al-e Ahmad, the author's husband.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In five intriguing stories, the formal detachment of Daneshvar's prose reinforces her subtle revelation of repressive features in Iranian society. The author, one of the few well-known women writers in Iran, is a feminist opposed to both political tyranny and religious fanaticism, themes obliquely indicated here. These seemingly simple stories disclose a rich culture in a time of ferment and change, of women in chadors , held in contempt by the men who control their lives. ``Vakil Bazaar'' seems innocent enough, an everyday tale of an upper-class child let loose in the bazaar while her nanny flirts with a shopkeeper. By the end, with the little girl lost and the nanny passively peering around, the reader is sure that the child will never be found, and nobody will care. In ``To Whom Can I Say Hello?,'' a woman alternates between mourning the loss of her lover and her job and worrying over her daughter, whose brutish husband has denied his mother-in-law access to his house. The moving ``Loss of Jalal'' is a nonfiction account of the death of the author's husband, a noted writer. This volume is a valuable addition to our knowledge of Persian culture and the political complexities of modern Iran. (Oct.)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781933823195
  • Publisher: Mage Publishers
  • Publication date: 10/31/2007
  • Pages: 188
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Table of Contents

Vakil Bazaar 9

The Accident 31

The Playhouse 53

Traitor's Intrigue 85

To Whom Can I Say Hello? 113

Loss of Jalal 133

A Letter from Simin Daneshvar 155

Translator's Afterword 173

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