Monday, January 20, 2020

“Refugees with no refuge”

انجمن سخن فارسی در دانشگاه شیکاگو تقدیم می کند:
پناهجویان بی پناه

عزت گوشه گیر

پنجشنبه ۲۳ ژانویه، ساعت پنج تا شش و نیم عصر
ساختمان پِک ، سالون Pick Hall 218, Univ. of Chicago ۲۱۸
۵۸۲۸ سوث یونیورستی اونو 5828 South University Ave
شیکاگو Chicago, IL 60637 ۶۰۶۳۷

“Refugees with no refuge”

-- Ezzat Goushegir, writer & playwright, DePaul University
Thursday January 23rd, from 5:00-6:30pm
Pick Hall 218, University of Chicago
5828 S. University Ave, Chicago, IL 60637

Ezzat Goushegir has published six books in Persian, including four collections of short stories, a collection of two plays and a book of poetry. She writes in both English and Persian and her plays have been produced in the U.S., Europe, China and the Philippines. She is currently teaches at DePaul University in Chicago.
As always, tea and refreshments will be served - hope to see you there

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Painful Days

 It’s truly difficult to express my feelings...It's enormously painful to see that the best of bests of the children of Iran and the world....gone in a moment....
My deepest condolences to the family of the victims of the Ukrainian plane shot down.

"After initially denying reports suggesting it had caused the crash of a Ukrainian airliner, Iran has acknowledged that it "unintentionally" shot down the plane."

Sunday, January 12, 2020

A Stranger in Shanghai


In a gloomy day, agonized with painful, infuriating news I watched "A Stranger in Shanghai" based on brilliant Japanese writer Ryunosuke Akutagawa's diary during the turbulent time in 1921, Shanghai.

Beautifully written, directed and acted. 
 

"A Stranger in Shanghai recounts the true story of Ryunosuke Akutagawa, one of Japan’s most endearing and highly regarded writers, who under somewhat mysterious circumstances accepted a position as a newspaper correspondent in Shanghai, and while there, witnessed the suffering of its citizens who were under foreign concessions of western European countries and Japan. As he covered the revolution in Shanghai, Akutagawa forged relationships with the working men, and women in the brothels, living in Shanghai.

The story of Akutagawa’s time in Shanghai is notable because the author came to be known as “Father of the Japanese Short Story,” after his masterwork “Rashomon” was published. It was later made into a classic film by one of Japan’s most important and influential film directors, Akira Kurosawa."

Thursday, January 2, 2020

"Revolutionary Road"

Revolutionary Road
"Revolutionary Road" shows the American Dream awakened by a nightmare. It takes place in the 1950s, the decade not only of Elvis but of The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit. It shows a young couple who meet at a party, get married and create a suburban life with a nice house, a manicured lawn, "modern" furniture, two kids, a job in the city for him, housework for her, and martinis, cigarettes, boredom and desperation for both of them.

Marriage Story

Marriage Story....is a must watch film. Watch it, discuss it and analyze it.
"A stage director and his actor wife struggle through a grueling, coast-to-coast divorce that pushes them to their personal and creative extremes."

Saturday, December 28, 2019

Delightful Taste of Secrets



January 8, 2015
The Delight of Fear

Reviewed By Ezzat Goushegir

Farnoosh Moshori's new novel The Drum Tower gives us a delicious taste of secrets, the delight of fear, the treasure of dreams, the sweetness of humor and glimpse of fictionalized history.

Written scrupulously with the fluidity of prose and scrutiny; Moshiri journeys into the depth of Iranian culture, through the core principles of Persian poetry, mythology, fairytales, folktales and legends, in order to write a story full of poignant mysteries. The result is a masterful portrayal of a family in Iran living during the times of social and political upheaval in 1979. Growing up with Persian poetry and literature she shapes her novels with the wealth of literary traditions as well as the richness of contemporary American novels.
Consisting of multiple plot strands, the essence of this multilayered novel is devoted to the analysis of a diluted aristocratic family shattered by the collapse of former dynasty and later ending the old tradition of monarchy by people's uprising through 1978. To portray the effect of this critical period, Moshiri constructs to reveal the entanglement of her characters' personal lives through family negligence, sexual and emotional abuse, madness, the insanity caused by revolution, the rise of religious dogmatists and ultimately war. She creates absurd images, settings and spaces to unveil the incongruity of her characters' behaviors; their vulnerability and strength, peculiarity and intelligence, illusory and sense of reality. With all their absurdity, her characters surprisingly are amiable, pleasant and delightful to the readers!

Moshiri intentionally chooses her characters' names and characteristics based on symbolic meanings and literary factors. Her main character Talkhoon is originated in an old folktale "The story of Talkhoon and Ah" which in 60s and 70s regenerated and shaped new generation of women in Iran who were in search of new identity. These women formed an underground revolution in mind, in theory and practice through literature and art to follow certain principles: Freedom, justice, equality,bravery, curiosity, autonomy, audacity,knowledge, and wisdom!

Although Moshiri's Talkhoon is considered mentally ill, she in fact is an an astute observer,and fully aware of her surroundings. In her reclusive cell, she carefully absorbs, learns and practices the lessons of life, protests in her own way, wears men's clothes and falls into deliberate silence to overcome her agony, her unbearable situation.

Resembling Emily Bronte's life dealing with her own creation of Heathcliff, Talkhoon, discovers the plans and schemes to escape from Assad, the compulsive illiterate servant, half-uncle and later a thug, a sickening torturer who puts his revenge on her with violence and rage. His complicated obsessive love and hatred had been accumulated through years of degradation, contempt and class inferiority. In another way, Khanum-jaan a crazy matriarch is portrayed beautifully.

Although the illustration of Baba-ji is a bit ambiguous but his complicated coma represents a generation who had fallen into symbolic and metaphorical oblivion. Symbolic; because they had lived under tyranny for a long historical time, and their only opportunity was to dream of freedom and wish for an imagery bird of liberty. Although Baba-ji's obsession on writing a book about mythical Simorgh, the bird of knowledge, sheds light on the importance of the collectivity of global wisdom, yet his anticipation of the bird's appearance and the search for sapphire feather remain ambiguous.

In writing style, Moshiri's story is intimate. She deliberately focuses on the surface of description and lets the reader to be completely free in taking an active role in the formation of her novel and go beyond the depth of her story. She invites the reader to take the liberty to imagine the events, travel with the characters, judge them or not judge them or react to the situation. This absolute freedom helps the reader to choose, to analyze or take sides. Her dialogues are smooth as well as the narrative technique which is fluent and fully demonstrative.

"Blue is the Warmest Color"



January 4, 2015

 
Reviewed By: Ezzat Goushegir

Graphic Novel

Emotionally profound and drastically honest, "Blue is the Warmest Color", the graphic novel by Julie Maroh, portrays a teenage girl, Clementine, who journeys through excruciating pain to discover her identity and sexual orientation. Written tenderly with unique French sensibility and genuine frankness, the core of the story emphasizes the essentiality of love in human life.

"Clementine: Have you never been ashamed to be like that?
Emma: Only love will save the world. Why would I be ashamed to love?"

In terms of writing and drawing technique, Maroh manages to make transitions between present and past, dialogue and narrations by presenting color for present time and black and while with a touch of blue for past time. Although Maroh had no tendency to stress on racial and class differentiation, but the reader could feel slight traces of these subjects through colors, characters' manners and dialogues!

Film

Abdellatif Kechiche has been a director that I have admired immensely since his film Black Venus . Before watching "Blue Is the Warmest Color"; I had seen three powerful films by him: Games of Love and Chance, The Secret of the Grain and Black Venus. I'm still obsessed by Black Venus; a powerful film I believe had never received an adequate attention it truly deserved.

It seems "Blue Is the Warmest Color" is the continuation of "Games of Love and Chance" in a more concrete, tangible and personal way, emphasizing a deep analysis of a character torn apart by her sexual identity and social norms. kechiche is a multidisciplinary filmmaker, fascinated by the complexity of human reactions toward circumstances. He is also obsessed by the beauty and vibrating energy of the youth.

The film with all its stunning beauties and masterful scenes is unnecessarily long and in some parts ostentatious. It also falls into unnecessary pornographic expressions which takes away its absolute beauty.