Tony's Reviews > Night Sun, Our Wounds, Prometheus in Evin, Poems, and Leave to Remain

Night Sun, Our Wounds, Prometheus in Evin, Poems, and Leave t... by Rob Ritchie
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's review
Nov 24, 2010

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bookshelves: drama
Read in November, 2010

Ataie, Iraj Jannatie. THE NIGHT SUN: OUR WOUNDS (1989). ***, and PROMETHEUS IN EVIN. (1989). ***. “Iraj Janntie Ataie is one of Iran’s foremost poets and playwrights. Arrested and imprisoned by the Shah, he escaped to England on the eve of the Islamic Revlution. When Khomeini came to power and selective persecution gave way to ruthless destruction of Iranian literary and theatrical culture, the responsibility for keeping that tradition alive fell to writers like Ataie writing in exile. It is a measure of his determination to reach an audience that Ataie has begun to write in English. The Night Sun includes Our wounds, a mythical story in which a popular uprising ousts a tyrannous king working in league with the Devil and Prometheus in Evin in which a poet cracks under torture by a cynical military, first staged in Farsi at the Royal Court and then in English at the Young Vic Theater, London, to great critical acclaim.” The above is from the back jacket of this edition. Reading these plays, you wonder how they really played on stage. The scenes are short and numerous and usually require set changes and/or additiona. The language reminds you of WW II propoganda film scripts – stern and didactic. It’s very much like reading “The Pilgrim’s Progress” in the way they hammer home the frustration of the writer. The author clearly wants to get in your face and make you realize to what extent the then government of Iran subverted the will of the people through intimidation and violence. These are more political screeds than works of drama.

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