Persian Language Speakers

International conference in Tehran


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Ari Siletz

Abarmard, some pre-Islamic literature has survived.

by Ari Siletz on

Besides the prose Karnameh Ardeshir Papakan, written in Middle Persian--which is one of the sources of Ferdowsi's Shahnameh--a handful of other works have survived, for example Derakht Asoorig which is a poem about a date tree and a goat--probably written for children in the Ashkanian times. Many known works are as yet undiscovered and we know of their existence because they were either translated into Arabic or are referred to in other works. At any rate Middle Persian is a legitimate and interesting area of research which has occupied a few scholars in Iran and elsewhere.

As a comparison, Chaucer's Canterbury Tales, in Middle English, is almost invariably studied in English literature curricula. The fact that it is in Middle English and not Modren English hardly detracts from its importance to English literature.

As far as Hosseini goes, it's not his presence at the congress--which is a welcome sign of interest as you point out--but in the context of IRI attitudes toward ancient Iran, what he said about the 1200 year business seems less of a gaffe than a dismissal of modern Persian's roots in Pre-Islamic Persia. I would rather he didn't show interest at all, than show up and push a political agenda. His presence and statement adds up to, "No funds for pre-Islamic research."

Jonny Dollar

Abarmard, thank you for comparing IRI w/China!

by Jonny Dollar on

I just cannot beleive you are defending the destruction of our limited historical places by IRI in the name of progress, and you justify it by comparing the policies with the communist anti democractic china's where they flooded cities, ruined lives in the name of progess!

Please, don't lecture me on dams and progress. I build dams, tunnels and bridges, but I would never get involoved in this kind of projects where our precious history would be burried for ever! I would find other alternatives. 

It surprises me even more to see this coming from someone who is from Persia (Shiraz)! Have you really changed that much in such a short time? I thought you were much more proud of your history in the past. If you still are, it doesn't show it by your writings. Very sorry to see you defending the wrong headed anti-historical poliicies of IRI. Destruction of our precious historical site in the name of progess, is not progress, it is a shame on whoever does it and supports it!

"God Is Love - but Love Is Not God!"


Dear Majid

by Abarmard on

As I understand, Sivand was a location that ancient dam was placed. The plan to establish a dam goes further than thirty some years. The need for having water directed in areas of farming land and residence is an unfortunate event that every country in the world, which wants to grow has to go through.

The study to have the dam there is not only based on the Islamic Republic. Think of China, where they put many ancient living cities under water to direct water to needed area. It can be argued, and I agree that messing with nature is wrong, however capitalistic mind that is dominant says otherwise. This doesn't end there, in every corner of this world many areas goes under changes that might have other consequence, but we do things that see profitable, and ultimately translates to "growth". It's economics. I personally am more worried about the rain forest than Sivand dam, if I were to put my energy on a just cause. 

Similar issue goes when Iran is developing routes for rail road to link Shiraz to Isfahan. These kinds of issues exist even in the cities in the US, and where I live. The capital, investments to yield profit always win. Therefore these kinds of arguments are not rooted in a country like Iran, it is world wide.


Dear Ari

by Abarmard on

I am not as informed about the written text of Persian language. Prose and poetry that I know are mostly within the 1000 year age. Isn't that right?

The ancient books as I understand are not Persian. Also it is the sign of a good host and respect to have the president or any high officials attending these meetings. Wouldn't someone argue why Iranian leaders don't give a damn about the Persian language if they did not attend? Is that ultimately something good to have a government, even as a show, to respect the language and promote this? I get mix messages when I hear negative comments about something that almost everyone here agrees on!

I am not aware about any other Iranian prose or poetry before Islam entered Iran. That time, historically was when the general population for the first time became educated to read and write and schooling was established. Is anything historical documents available that shows otherwise?

Immortal Guard

Put Rahim-Mashaie in charge of...

by Immortal Guard on

Put Rahim-Mashaie in charge of major Iranian cities' sewage facilities and plumbing network!


یه پیشنهاد.........




میشه در جوانب و حواشی این کنفرانس اگه یه خورده وقت پیدا کردین یه فکری هم به حال سدّ سیوند در دشت مُرغاب بکنین!

البتّه دس بجنبونین تا کورش زیر آب خفه نشده، یا حدّاقل اون مقبره رو بفروشین به خارجی ها که اونا نجاتش بدن!


Jonny Dollar

Totally a political gathering! I wish it was genuine!

by Jonny Dollar on

Look who is promoting this in the video, top advisor to AN. This is a political gesture and a follow up to the Cyrus cylinder. They want to get those anti-arab (esalm) and pro-persian people on their side coming next election. These are the "HAR TARAF KEH BAAD BIYAD MIRAN." I am glad the baad is coming in our direction. They got the message, but they are only trying to fool us. That's too bad!

"God is love!"


Politics via Wedlock

by Tavana on

The close family ties between the president & his first deputy minister represents the "depotism" in this adminstration and that has nothing to do with the "national characteristics" of the conference as stated by No Fear below.

Thanks much Ari for the catch of the day with your fine comments.

Ari Siletz

No Fear

by Ari Siletz on

The news clip doesn't give Hosseini's full speech so I can't be sure, but why does the fragment cited in PressTV  limit Persian to the post-Islamic period? From the video's reference to grammar, it seems they understand that pre-Islamic origins are relevant to Persian language studies.


To show that this is not just a matter of linguistics but also of literature, one interesting line of inquiry would be the similarity in philosophic view of post-Islamic Persian poets to the Zoroastrian gathas. The unique outlook of Persian poetry (and the difference between Persian and Arab poets) goes back to before  the 1200 year post-Islamic period. 

No Fear


by No Fear on

The minister of culture is doing his job. To have our president first deputy to be present as well displays the nationalistic characteristics of this administration.


Ari Siletz

Wish they had kept politics and ideology out of it.

by Ari Siletz on

"The opening ceremony was attended by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's chief of staff Esfandiar Rahim-Mashaei, Iran's Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance Mohammad Hosseini....

“Persian language has a 1200-year history of written literary prose and poetry,” said Hosseini during his speech. "




Not Ever @ "Ease!"

by Demo on

None & again none of these "showy" conferences or events will ever bring back the "ease" to the regime's bones due to their "ruined" credibility over the 2 years ago own created elections fiasco!   

PS: The Press TV reporter with his broken English honoring "Persian Language!" Is not something? Wish we were a nation of "sign language" instead & did not have to bear with this much "deceptions!"


Take it easy

by Abarmard on

This is a cultural event regarding Persian language. It should make you happy to see that Persian language is being promoted here not the other way around.

Jeesh Daram

نهار مفت

Jeesh Daram

خوب، حضار محترم لطفا حرکت بفرمائید بطرف سالن مجاور برای صرف نهار مفت، قلیان و چای و بعد هم چرت بعد از ظهر 

Maryam Hojjat

Mahmoudg, I agree with

by Maryam Hojjat on

you.  They are all paid by this rapist regime from poor Iranians'.


IRI stooges represent Evil not Iran or it's Indo=Aryan Culture

by AlexInFlorida on

Torturers, Rapists, Thieve, Murderers Inc.


God knows how many were paid

by mahmoudg on

to be present to put a human facade on the destructive work of this Rapist regime.