Fantasy and sci fi in Iran

 

We are in the 20th century and how come any good fantasy fiction that ever came out of our beloved land belongs to the negative centuries. Do we not have the imagination to create sci fi or is it we do not recognize it as a fine art?
Is it possible that our culture does not see the tools it provides to explore further matters where ordinary story telling or old fantasy tools fails?

 

Shabnam

 

Answer:

 

Dear Shabnam

Good question, but there are also many good answers to it.

 

One of them is that the Iranian writers still are in a political war with their government. This problem has overwhelmed us since the first really fiction novel of Sadeq Hedayat “Boofe Koor”. This short novel should start a novel movement which could end in the different kinds of literary genre as well as the fantasy genre. But it didn't really happen. We still can't forget the political problems in our country when we write.

 

Without knowing much about the fantasy novelist in Iran in present time, I know that there is a very big interest of this genre among young readers, just check this link: http://www.fantasy-academy.org/

But where is the writers?

 

To start a literary movement in a country like ours whose cultural and industrial development and imagination of the new worldview was not started in Iran, but outside of the country, in US and Europe, should happen in another form and step by step without loosing  what you call our “negative centuries”, which shows the Iranians greatness in creating fantacy worlds and an imagination activity in literature. This happened among certain big poets as Ferdowsi, Attar, Movlana(Rumi), Nezami and others…

 

I think the main problem is that our writers do not read the classical works of our great poets. Another problem is that they don’t know anything about science. If you ask them about what Einstein's philosophical points of his theory of relativity is or what quantum mechanic really is, they don’t know what to say. And don't try to ask them about the theory of change of paradigms and such stuff.

 

They haven't really studied philosophy, religion (not political religion), mysticisms, myth and they don't  have any kind of theoretical scientific understanding. And they don't really know what research is before they write their novels, actually there are just reducing themself to their own countries limitations.

 

Writing a good sci fi novel, the writer has to learn all these matters and much more. The problem is that our youngest countrymen know much more about science than our writers do! That is funny. And therefore as a young Iranian novel reader it is very boring to read I think any work of modern Iranian writers as long we are talking about THE FANTASY GENRE.

 

Without this deepest understanding of our own culture true literature and the magnificent about all other cultures and worldview(s) in our great and fantastic word(s) we will never become a nation whose literature are read amongst other nations.

 

The novel writing in Iran has just begun, and I will of course try to make these points in my own novels in the near future. I am tired of researching only, and will begin my first novel in about 6 months which I am planning at this moment.

 

But don't forget that this sci fi or mystical sci fi which I think could be a better name for the Iranian sci fi works in the future, can't happen with the work of one man. It takes time, as it did with the first really novel Don Juan in Europe, to make the (long)novel-writing and sci-fi a part of our culture.

 

The novel as literar work as well as sci fi as genre is here to stay…

 

See you in my books, if they get licence to be printed and published in Iran (?!, this is again another problem)

 

Find also this conversation in the forum of this website.

Arash

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