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Novel Folklore: On Sadegh Hedayat's

Novel Folklore: On Sadegh Hedayat's "The Blind Owl"

by Jason Reza Jorjani
Novel Folklore: On Sadegh Hedayat's

Novel Folklore: On Sadegh Hedayat's "The Blind Owl"

by Jason Reza Jorjani


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Sadegh Hedayat’s novel The Blind Owl is considered by many to be the greatest work of modern Persian literature. Often compared to the classics of Existentialism and Gothic Horror, The Blind Owl is widely believed to be cursed, so that anyone who reads it seriously is driven to suicide. This belief is no doubt influenced by Hedayat’s own suicide in Paris in 1951.

In Novel Folklore, Jason Reza Jorjani, whose grandfather was best friends with Hedayat, offers a revolutionary interpretation of The Blind Owl. Jorjani reveals Hedayat’s complex appropriation and adaptation of libertine Gnostic and antinomian Tantric ideas. He argues that Hedayat aimed to reestablish Iran’s perennial role as the cultural crossroads of the Western world and the Indo-Buddhist East.

On Jorjani’s reading, The Blind Owl is ultimately about the “Imaginal” metamorphosis of humans into higher beings. These beings are addressing us from our own future. We think of them as “aliens” because we are alienated from what it is within ourselves that holds these posthuman possibilities open to us. In the course of an extensive literary comparison of Hedayat’s novel to Whitley Strieber’s Communion, Jorjani suggests that the visitors from our future are here to re-write their past by re-engineering the folkloric substratum of human consciousness and identity.

Jason Jorjani’s Novel Folklore is a stunningly original interpretation of The Blind Owl and a philosophical work in its own right. This is true renaissance thought taking place in an Iranian context, which must also be globally relevant and written with a view to the needs of the next generation, who will live at the crossroads of Earth’s civilizations.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781912975631
Publisher: Arktos Media Ltd
Publication date: 02/06/2020
Pages: 178
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.41(d)

About the Author

Jason Reza Jorjani, PhD received his BA and MA at New York University, and completed his doctorate in Philosophy at the State University of New York at Stony Brook. He has taught courses on Science, Technology, and Society (STS), the philosophy of Martin Heidegger, the history of Iran, Comparative Religion, Ethics, Political Theory, and the History of Philosophy at schools such as the New Jersey Institute of Technology and the State University of New York. Jorjani is a professional member of the Society for Scientific Exploration (SSE), and his book Prometheus and Atlas won the 2016 Book Award from the Parapsychology Association (PA). He is also the author of Lovers of Sophia, World State of Emergency and Iranian Leviathan. His website is:

Table of Contents


  1. An Untimely Madman’s Angel of Destiny

  2. Soul Mates and Psychic Shadows

  3. Poisoned Wine and the Serpent Power

  4. The Eighth Clime

  5. Star Blood


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