ირანი შექუფე აზარის რომანში „ალუჩის ხის ემანაცია“

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Date
2022
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ივანე ჯავახიშვილის სახელობის თბილისის სახელმწიფო უნივერსიტეტის გამომცემლობა
Abstract
Shokoofeh Azar is an Iranian writer, residing in Australia. She is the author of the novel “The Enlightenment of the Greengage Tree”, English translation of which was shortlisted at the International Booker Prize for Fiction in 2020. The competition jury wrote about the novel: “The novel “The Enlightenment of the Greengage Tree” by Iranian- Australian writer Shokoofeh Azar is deeply impressive novel, which was translated from Persian into English. The storyline concerns Iran, the narrator is a spirit of thirteen-year-old girl Bahar, who tells us about the hard times of the life of the family and society since 1979 Islamic revolution. The novel is written in style of magical realism. She mixes the narrative manner characteristic for the classic Persian fiction to the Latin magical realism writing techniques, which merges with the Iranian folk ideas, fairy tales and myths. She tells us about the political regime, which is responsible for ruining many lives.” The writer herself gives the novel such definition: “The message of the „The Enlightenment of the Greengage Tree” is how the culture, art, hope and dream of the Iranian man can survive in the conditions of the political-religious stupidity and tongs… The novel is entirely the critic of the Islamic Revolution and Islam itself, for some extent.” Until now, the translator of the novel is still anonymous for his/her own safety, as the author of the book is banned by censor in Iran. Nevertheless, the copies of the novel illegally transported to Iran, are legally sold inside the country. As we have already mentioned, Shokoofeh Azar has created this novel on the principles of magical realism. This important artistic method of the contemporary world literature, yet more in the Persian literature and in women literature in particular is extremely popular. Perhaps, because of its mythopoetic nature, and on the other hand - the special place of symbolism in it, the writer explains this issue in this way: „I wanted to cover the socio-political cruelty issues via magical realism and, simultaneously, expose the Iranian (non-Islamic) culture aesthetics and its beauty”. The mainline of the novel is represented by the real events and current political situation, in particular, Islamic revolution and the severity and absurdity of the further period. And, the second level of the novel, and indeed the more important layer of the novel, is an illustration of the writer's main point: the beauty of the eternal values; capacity of the ethno cultural values – unlike transient human fuss and stupidity. The ironic debates on the „immensity” of the Islamic Revolution, “people’s desire” is worth notable. Officially, in the elections, 98% of the population supported Khomeini. In the village, where the action of the novel takes place and even in that region, neither the name of Khomeini, nor the Iran-Iraqi war and the Revolution is being heard. When the countryman Hosseini comes to his village in order to involve the villagers in war and briefly talks about revolution, Iran-Iraqi war, the terrible actions of the Americans and the heroism of the Iranian warriors, the villagers listen to him unwindingly and only the elderly man asks him: „But, where is Iraq? Who is America?” Revolution and its following period is represented in the novel with its severe diversity. Detaining, torture, death penalty; searching, property confiscation, burning of books are against the backdrop of the whole text. Another worth-noting issue, which appears in various angles across the novel is a woman issue. The writer, apart from the realistic, earthborn images, in the way of mythologization of the scene, creates the mythopoetic characters with a style of magical realism, with whom override of the feminine origins are becoming more vivid and impressive, and the cruelty of the Revolution - dark and unacceptable. In the novel, we meet real characters, with their everydayness. These women live in the realistic hoop of the novel and patently show the reader their cheerless, monotonous and bordered existence. Completely deprived of their rights, the voiceless servants of their husbands, although they are against Bita’s torture by their husbands, obediently return home, where they have to get the dinner ready, help their children with their homework. Overall, women’s everydayness – “women errands” wait for them. External affairs, even it is violence on a woman, does not concern them. “It is man’s business”, - that’s what they were told by their husbands and they have accepted. Apart from woman, Shokoofeh Azar represents generally the role of the human and its definition issue in the society. In the episodes of Bita’s torture and murder, a whole spectrum of people of different attitudes and worldviews is shown; But despite this apparent difference, the result of their actions is the same. Among so many people, no one was found who would effectively raise up against the so-called cruelty of society. Some were hampered by the laziness, some – by the skills, assessing realistically the events, knowing that he/she was unable to change anything; some of them – by the fear of losing his/her career growth; some – by the close relations and relative connections with the murderers. In the episode, which represents perfect psychologic portrait of the so-called society, it is obvious that the writer characterizes not only the current Iranian situation and injustice of the Islamic regime. It is her protest against the human nature, which produces numerous unjustified actions and severity. As long as people are only obsessed with ensuring their own well-being, as long as the other person is "other" and "alien" for them, for whom it is not worth bothering, injustice and cruelty in this world will exist, and where, in which country exactly will this cruelty rise - in Iran or elsewhere, nobody knows; and person cannot determine when it will spread its wings. It is difficult for a human to live in such an unstable and cruel world.
Description
ეძღვნება პროფ. გოჩა ჯაფარიძის ხსოვნას (1942 – 2020)/ Dedicated to Memory of Prof. Gocha Japaridze (1942 – 2020)
Keywords
შექუფე აზარი, ისლამური რევოლუცია, მაგიური რეალიზმი, ცენზურა, Shekoofeh Azar, Islamic revolution, Magic realism, censure
Citation
აღმოსავლეთმცოდნეობა, 11, თბილისი, 2022, გვ.: 41-52/ Oriental Studies, 11, Tbilisi, 2022, pp.: 41-52
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