A Social History of Iranian Cinema, Volume 3: The Islamicate Period, 1978–1984 (Social History of Iranian Cinema (Paperback))

A Social History of Iranian Cinema, Volume 3: The Islamicate Period, 1978–1984 (Social History of Iranian Cinema (Paperback))

Language: English

Pages: 288

ISBN: 0822348772

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


Hamid Naficy is one of the world’s leading authorities on Iranian film, and A Social History of Iranian Cinema is his magnum opus. Covering the late nineteenth century to the early twenty-first and addressing documentaries, popular genres, and art films, it explains Iran’s peculiar cinematic production modes, as well as the role of cinema and media in shaping modernity and a modern national identity in Iran. This comprehensive social history unfolds across four volumes, each of which can be appreciated on its own.

In Volume 3, Naficy assesses the profound effects of the Islamic Revolution on Iran's cinema and film industry. Throughout the book, he uses the term Islamicate, rather than Islamic, to indicate that the values of the postrevolutionary state, culture, and cinema were informed not only by Islam but also by Persian traditions. Naficy examines documentary films made to record events prior to, during, and in the immediate aftermath of the revolution. He describes how certain institutions and individuals, including prerevolutionary cinema and filmmakers, were associated with the Pahlavi regime, the West, and modernity and therefore perceived as corrupt and immoral. Many of the nation's moviehouses were burned down. Prerevolutionary films were subject to strict review and often banned, to be replaced with films commensurate with Islamicate values. Filmmakers and entertainers were thrown out of the industry, exiled, imprisoned, and even executed. Yet, out of this revolutionary turmoil, an extraordinary Islamicate cinema and film culture emerged. Naficy traces its development and explains how Iran's long war with Iraq, the gendered segregation of space, and the imposition of the veil on women encouraged certain ideological and aesthetic trends in film and related media. Finally, he discusses the structural, administrative, and regulatory measures that helped to institutionalize the new evolving cinema.

A Social History of Iranian Cinema
Volume 1: The Artisanal Era, 1897–1941
Volume 2: The Industrializing Years, 1941–1978
Volume 3: The Islamicate Period, 1978–1984
Volume 4: The Globalizing Era, 1984–2010

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religious education was “closely linked with identity formation,” favoring creation of a “politicized Shi’i identity among schoolchildren” (Mehran 2007:54–56). Despite the wish for simpler, purer, and more authentic values, these IsÂ� lamicate values were not absolutist concepts that rejected the modern world. Rather, as a form of dynamic populism, in the sense that Ervand AbrahamÂ� ian proposes, they were capable of change and of absorbing modernity, “even eventually of political pluralism,

Najafi, in charge of cinema at mcig, first used the term “underground cinema” (sinema-Â�ye zirzamini). He correctly predicted that an underground cinema would emerge from undue intolerance.32 Soon after releasing Speak Up Turkmen, Allamehzadeh directed The Wise Little Black Fish (Mahi-Â�ye Siah- Â�e Kuchulu-Â�ye Dana, 1980), about the Marxist writer Samad Behrangi. Finally, Allamehzadeh made Stream and Moisture (Shat va Sharji, 1980), a documentary on the war with Iraq, commissioned by vvir and

several short documentaries about the hard lives 122 c o ns o l i d at i n g “i sla mi ca t e” ci n ema of people on the margins of society. Ayat Film also produced many slide-Â� tape presentations, each containing fifty to seventy slides and an audiocassette, which were widely distributed (50,000 packages). At first, the topics they dealt with were primarily religious and Islamic, but as revolutionary ardor gained momentum, images of revolutionary leaders, “martyrs,” and anti-Â� Shah

trusted film personnel, such as Najafi, Mohammad Ali Hashemi, and Masud Kimiai, formed the nucleus of the Council of Film and Cinema at the Ministry of Culture and Higher Education in May 1980. They took the first official crack at a new vision of cinema by proposing to partly nationalize the film industry, following the model of some Asian and African countries.16 Najafi, then supervisor of mche’s Office of Development and Exhibition (Edareh-Â�ye Tarvij va Namayesh), announced measures to

women, and intellectuals, and its pursuit of nuclear energy and alleged nuclear weapons programs. These slowed the movement of film into a self-Â�sustaining industrialized mode. Nevertheless, thanks to the intrusion of a centralizing state and the emergence of key players and paragovernmental foundations (bonyads), the film industry’s rationalization, professionalization, and industrialization continued. The Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance and the Farabi Cinema Foundation The

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