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Literature of Iran

Shiva Arastui

Iranian Short Story Writer, Novelist & Poet
Shiva Arastui
Born in Tehran
Diploma in Health Assistance, Tehran University
Diploma in Industrial Public Health, Tehran University
BA in English Language, Azad University, Tehran
Thesis: The translation of "Hajji Baba" from English into Persian
1994, Four years studying "Fiction" at Reza Baraheni Workshops
Social Activities

1982, Medical Voluntary in war hospitals
Medical Voluntary in burn & accident hospitals
Cooperation with Dr. Barzegar in "Free Vaccination Project" for children in the south of Tehran
Cooperation in doctorate thesis "Industrial Public Health in Iranian Factories"
Medical Voluntary in earthquake of Roudbar
2004, Body building coach
Medical Voluntary in earthquake of Bam 

Teaching Grammar of English Language
to present, Personal Fiction Workshop Institute
She has taught numerous students; three of the best 2000's writers have studied in her workshops; two of them have won the best prize of Golshiri Foundation in 2001 and 2002.
Teaching "Fiction" in Art University, Tehran
Teaching "Fiction" in Farabi University, Tehran
Translations & Critic

Translation of "Anna Akhmatoa" from English to Persian (with Reza Baraheni)
1996, Art critic & literary critic in "Film Reportage Magazine" and other newspapers
Literary Critic on "Wandering Island", a novel by Simin Danesh-var, published in Takapou magazine; this critic is translated into English, as the introduction of the English version of the novel.
Movies Critic Book, on war movies, due to Ahmad Reza Darvish's movies
Translation of Forouq Farokh-zad's poem from Persian to English


2001, Consultant writer of war movies
Movies Critic Book, on war movies, due to Ahmad Reza Darvish's movies
Actor in avant-garde short movie, director "Parviz Jahed", based on a short story by Mohammad Qasem-zadeh
Actor in avant-garde short movie "Chaos", director "Maneli Azar Mehr", based on Forouq Farokh-zad's life (BA thesis)
Actor in avant-garde short movie, director "Azadeh Salimian" (BA thesis)
Actor in avant-garde short movie "Black Down", director "Bijan Mir Baqeri", based on the "Black Down" short story, by Jonpa Lahiri
Books: Poetry

Poetry collection/Roshan-garan Pub./85 pages/Persian language/43 poems from 1989-1994
"Let's Finish it"
Poetry collection/First edition, 2002, Guiv Pub./Second edition, 2004, Qatreh Pub./63 pages/Persian language/33 poems from 1994-2001
Books: Short Story


"I've Come to Drink Tea, With My Daughter"
Collection of a novelette and 6 short stories/First edition, 1997, Markaz Pub./Second edition 2001, Qazal Pub./Third edition, 2003, Markaz Pub./95 pages/Persian language/
First story, "I've Come to Drink Tea, With My Daughter", is the narration of the life of a woman, who is going to act in a movie of her previous husband, the director. Each story in this collection is an effort of the writer to experience new forms in her works.
Collection of 10 short stories/First edition 2002, Guiv Pub./Second edition 2003, Guiv Pub./Third edition 2004, Markaz Pub./104 pages/Persian language/
An exact experience of the subjective manners of Iranian today's women, sometimes scoffing, and also explanation of the human relations, remembering nostalgic reminiscences in suitable forms of story and indirect explanation of the women in the society are the main themes of all the short stories in this book.
"I'm not Virgin"
Collection of short stories/2005/Qatreh Pub./Persian language
These stories contain mostly the problems and specialties of Iranian women from different classes. Form in these stories are more conscious and more complete. The language of the narration is neutralized to the real narrations.
Books: Novel





"Just I Saw Him, Became Pretty"
Novelette/First edition, 1991, Roshan-garan Pub./Second edition, 2004, Qatreh Pub./72 pages/Persian language/written on 1989-1991
A modern narration of the different phases of the life of a nurse. The structure of the narration shows the experience of the subjective and objective language, both together. The relation between she and her father "Abu-Taleb", who suffered from Epilepsy, death; war-wounded-mad soldier, who is hospitalized, in coma; her relation with the imagination of young Abu-Taleb; her relation with the boy or girl, victim of the earthquake; and in the center of the relation, the subjective conversation of the narrator with an imaginary sperm, which she wishes, she had it from her lover, are the most important themes of the novelette. Shahrzad, the narrator of all the other stories of the writer, became the archetype mother and the earthen archetype women in this story.
"Bi-Bi Shahrzad"
Novel/First edition, 2001, Baran Pub., Sweden/Second edition, 2004, Qatreh Pub., Tehran/164 pages/Persian language/Some parts are translated and published in Swedish language./This novel has won the Sweden Scholarship (Pen)./written on 1997-1999
It is the narration of a prostitute girl, by a painter. Beside the narration of her life, painter's life is shown. The story starts and finishes on the painting of the girl, which is drawn by the narrator. Using different views in this novel, results a new experience in the form and structure.
"The First Version"
Novel/1998, Elm Pub./220 pages/Persian language/
The narrator narrates the process of the writing of this book. It has created a new experience in the written experiences of Iranian writers: the Experience of the Writing of the Writing Process. It contains documentary phenomena of the period that the writer is born, attained and is writing.
"The Sky is not Empty"
Novel/Elm Pub./2003/152 pages/Persian language/
In the time of chain-terrors, the narrator, who is a writer herself, searching the reasons of her father's death (a poet), went to his home town. While writing a book on his father's life (Dashi) in this trip, her life is narrated, and it is identified with the myth of Anahita.
Novel/2005/Qatreh Pub./Persian language/
It is the narration of a woman's life, torture and then addiction. The main location is a mental hospital that the narrator is hospitalized there. In a Surrealistic and Metaphormistic approach, the hospital became the final place for all the people of the novel.
Novel/2005/Qatreh Pub./Persian language/
The narration of the life of 3 women; the first is an Iranian woman, who travels to Europe as a tourist; the second is an immigrated Iranian women to Europe; and the last one is a Swedish woman. The life of each three women causes another narrations. Situation in this novel has the main role to construct the form.

Pen (Sweden Scholarship), for "Bi-Bi Shahrzad" book, for two years (March 2001-2003); she used only six months of this scholarship; Shiva Arastui donated the rest of the period to the Iranian poet, Maryam Houleh and her family.
Golshiri Prize, for "Aftab-Mahtab" book
Yalda Literal Prize, for "Aftab-Mahtab" book
The idea of the Jury:
In her works, the motion toward subjective writing of the woman, while using feminine story arrangement, successful transformation of the spaces, 
changing personages and writing of unsaid experiences are distinguished and characterized.
Shiva Arastui lives and works as a professional writer; her high degree of social activities, allow her to write more near to the reality of her home. She has done many interviews; a lot of critics is written on her works, while she has written a large number of critics and introductions on poems, short stories, novels and movies.
The Names (a Poem from the collection of "Let's Finish It!")
My poem 
Wouldn’t suit to the rime of my figure
my name
wouldn’t get rid of my surname
but you
to my name
do not intend my suitable body

in which corner of your party
is a prayer mat spread that you are waiting for me?
to tie a rag to miracle, I’d told some of you: Love!
the broadcloth of your chests
smells after the stench of your breath 
so, tying the rag wouldn’t join miracle
one of you, who was too genius
so much I was satiated with the wisdom of his genius
poured from my heart to my gut and was lost in well!

I’d told the last one of you;
let’s finish it
he took it seriously and I was finished
your surname wouldn’t able to join my first name
do not intend my suitable body
read your newspaper
it is full of your surnames
I’ve stuck my forehead on the broadcloth’s seal
do get rid of my surname!


Contemporary Persian Poets


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