VOYAIn the minds of many Americans, Iran is associated solely with the humiliating episode of American Embassy hostages held for 444 days in 1979-1981. Filling a much-needed gap in information on Iran for young adults, this book captures the historical ebb and flow of friendship and enmity, of dependence and distrust between the two nations. Contact began in 1856 when the United States was a young republic and Iran was a monarchy already more than two thousand years old. Despite the distance between the two countries, Iran has been seen in the twentieth century as a strategic component to world peace and prosperity. Russia and Britain had interests in the region, particularly after World War I when oil became important. After World War II, the U.S. became concerned with ensuring that Iran remained non-Communist. The interplay between these outside influences and the ancient culture of the Persians, where Islam and politics have been intertwined for centuries, is a complex subject made easier to understand by the author's clear presentation. Much attention is paid to U.S. intervention in Iranian affairs in the 1950s and to Muhammad Reza Shah's dependence on U.S. support for his regime. The reasons for the demise of that regime and the subsequent twenty-year "freeze" in Iranian-American relations are explained carefully. For its overview of events leading up to the present, this book promises to be a good student resource, well written with plenty of photos. Index. Photos. Maps. Biblio. Source Notes. VOYA CODES: 4Q 2P J S (Better than most, marred only by occasional lapses; For the YA with a special interest in the subject; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9; Senior High, defined asgrades 10 to 12). 2000, Twenty First Century, 128p, . Ages 13 to 18. Reviewer: Heidi Borton SOURCE: VOYA, June 2001 (Vol. 24, No. 2)
School Library JournalGr 6 Up-Spencer briefly mentions Iran's long history, but concentrates on the problems dominating its relationship with the U.S. He offers a balanced approach and places responsibility for the misunderstandings on both governments. He examines the shifts in the relationship and the end of Iran's monarchy and its present-day theocracy. His clear, direct explanations and illustrative comments will be understandable to students who have little knowledge of the conflicts or religions involved. Two full-page, black-and-white maps showing modern Iran and the ancient Persian Empire are easily interpreted. A few average-quality, black-and-white photos and illustrations are scattered throughout. An extensive bibliography and source notes are included. Up-to-date information presented in an accessible format.-Carol Durusau, Newton County Public Library, Covington, GA Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.|
Midwest Book ReviewWilliam Spencer's United States And Iran reviews relations between the two nations, surveying their histories and the progress of their contacts.
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