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Iranian lesbians do not fear reprisals

September 28 2011

Four years after Iranian dictatorship Mahmoud Ahmadinejad during a speech at Columbia University, said that in Iran there are no representatives of sexual minorities, the Iranian-American filmmaker Maryam Keshavarz`s made a film about two Iranian lesbian who fell under the oppression of religious and cultural repression .
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Picture of Circumstance ("Circumstance") participants and spectators of the festival Sundance greeted with an ovation deservedly: Mariam was the first who showed the dark side of life Iranians usually feel embarrassed to talk about sex so openly. The film is filmed in Lebanon, away from the eyes of the authorities. And there is no director to advertise their activities for security reasons .
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Despite the fact that Miriam looked sick taboo topic in Iran, the film, critics say, has turned out not "Iranian" - perhaps precisely because of all at the same security reasons, Mariam could not develop into full force. The choice of locations, set design, clothes, dialogues, and even make-up - all this often seems unreal and artificial. Actress, plays the main role - loving each other schoolgirls - clearly increased in the West, and even though they are trying to say, as Tehran's girls, believe in it with difficulty .
Nevertheless, the fact that the film raised the issue of homosexuality in Iran, just as local activists welcomed. A strict policy of the Islamic Republic of gender segregation in which women occupy in buses and special sections go to separate schools, led to the sexual confusion. What may know about the relationship simple Iranian girl, if all his time she spends with the same as it is, "captives"? But Iranian feminists of the movie is not happy .
"Featured in the film relations are hyperbolic, and the way the story brings the essence of the picture to the issues of sex and repression of the state, making the film more interesting spectator, but diverting attention from the seriousness of this issue - says Mahboubeh Abbasgolizade, feminist and prakozaschitnitsa. - A number of feminist and community activists, this film is angry. They believe that these pictures are really necessary, but they should be shown the real relations .
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I know that to find in Iran as a lesbian, and girls who are willing to play them, it's hard, but it seriously hurt the film, at least in the eyes of those who live in Iran, or just knows Farsi. "Keshavarts has substituted itself not only for criticism but also by a possible fall from grace with the authorities. Raising a politically dangerous topic, it is unlikely to return to the country while in power is the Islamic government. For those of Iranian-Americans who want to be able to regularly travel to their homeland parents, this is akin to emotional suicide .
But it seems that the ability to openly discuss the Iranian social taboos Mariam puts higher chance of ever returning home. Miriam's parents moved to the U.S. in 1967 for medical practice, and later opened in the suburbs of New York clinic for the poor.When she was six years old, the family was forced to move back to Iran - if the U.S. began the "fashion" for the hostages, and the neighbors began to hone in Keshavarts Iranians their sharp tongues and unarmed combat skills .
As she recalls Mary, arrived in Iran, she was at the peak of the Islamization of the school system. In an era of "dointernetya" it every time I come from the U.S. to Iran, held customs control with a sinking heart: in her luggage had been hidden tapes with albums by Michael Jackson and recent issues of Vogue and Cosmopolitan for bridesmaids. "I was a smuggler of cultural values," - says Miriam .
Then it was enough to get arrested. Now it is rightly considered an enemy of the state. Hamid Dabashi, a professor of comparative literature and iranovedeniya Columbia University in New York believes that movies like "circumstances" must be judged on the basis primarily of their artistic value, not social or political overtones .
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"It is true that the topic of sexual minorities, as understood in America and Europe, Iran is taboo. But this does not mean that the homoerotic theme is never addressed in literature and fine arts. In Persian poetry, there is simply no gender pronouns, so the figure of a loved person can be equally as geteroerotichnoy and gomoerotichnoy "- explains Dabashi .
Whatever it was, critics agree in one, not even trying to argue if this movie took John Smith from Montana, it would never have noticed. And regardless of talent Keshavarts as a director, the picture opened a dialogue about sexuality Iranians .
Based on materials www.thedailybeast.com

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