Journey from the land of no

by Ruʾyā Ḥakkākiyān

Paperback, 2004

Status

Available

Publication

New York : Three Rivers Press, 2004.

Description

From a charmed childhood in pre-revolutionary Iran - a time when veils for women were banned and miniskirts were all the rage - to awakening to the dawning of the Islamic Fundamentalist revolution, JOURNEY FROM THE LAND OF NO charts a brilliant young girl's coming of age as the world she knows and loves falls apart. Young Roya dreams of becoming an famous writer but the country beats her to growing up when Ayatollah Khomeyni returns after a 15-year exile and life in Iran is changed forever, from veils for women becoming mandatory to school friends accused of reading blasphemous books being escorted from class by guards, never to be seen again. Roya escaped only because her teacher risked her life to save such a talented writer. Roya and her friends become victims of an insidious war declared on Iran's female citizens: 'Between 1982 and 1990 an unknown number of Iranian women were raped on the eve of their executions by guards who alleged that killing a virgin was a sin in Islam.' At her loneliest, watching the world change below from her rooftop at night, Roya discovers the consolations of writing, a gift that will ultimately enable her to find her own voice and become her own person. But it was not to be for long in Iran. Forced to flee at 18, Hakakian reflects that `When you have been a refugee, abandoned all your loves and your belongings, your memories become your belongings'. She has woven these memories into a powerfully evocative portrait of a turning point in history - and a timely reminder of the power of the human spirit.… (more)

User reviews

LibraryThing member Seajack
I confess I was slightly bored by the first half of the story: pre-teen Jewish girl's life in pre-Revolutionary Tehran; that section does make a point that opposition to the Shah was widespread, far from just a radical Moslem "thing". Second part (post-Revolution) is much stronger, though the story ends as the family makes the final decision to emigrate, with a "teaser" that the story of their journey might be forthcoming as a sequel; there is an epilogue telling of the "fate" of most of the main characters at the time the book went to press.… (more)
LibraryThing member kikianika
Beautifully written account of a girl growing up in revolutionary Iran in the late 70s. I loved the plain language especially. It wasn't intellectualised, but just a straight tale, well told. And I suppose it goes to show that women in revolution countries are always the asme. Idealistic, hopeful and ultimately suppressed.
LibraryThing member Risa15
The writing was very descriptive and this memoir of a young Jewish girl growing up in Iran held my interest throughout
LibraryThing member kikilon
Beautifully written account of a girl growing up in revolutionary Iran in the late 70s. I loved the plain language especially. It wasn't intellectualised, but just a straight tale, well told. And I suppose it goes to show that women in revolution countries are always the asme. Idealistic, hopeful and ultimately suppressed.
LibraryThing member cransell
Pairing this book with Lipstick Jihad, you get a good overall view of the effect of the revolution in Iran, from it's beginning to the present day - especially on women.
LibraryThing member atiara
The author's style is a bit too poetic for my taste, but still engrossing. The title says it all.

Language

Barcode

7273
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