The Soul of Man Under Iranian Repression

Only after fleeing Iran have I been able to perceive my home clearly, and what disturbs me the most are not the political or economic issues there but the social and sexual ones.

May 13, 2020 | Shay Khatiri
About the author: Shay Khatiri is a graduate student in strategic studies at the School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University. He grew up in Iran, left the country in 2011, and is currently seeking political asylum in the United States.

Iranian girls in Khorramabad on October 11, 2016. Eric Lafforgue/Art in All of Us/Corbis via Getty Images.

When I was twenty-two, having never visited any other country except Dubai for a couple of weeks, I left Iran for good. My only understanding of life outside was what I had seen on TV and in movies. Eight years later, having lived in Arizona and Washington DC, now I can look back on the society that formed me. I can reflect on what was normal where I grew up, and what was not. By the time I left, I believed Iran’s national history and culture to be rich and beautiful, and I had already intuited that they were under siege by the regime in power.

Welcome to Mosaic

Create a free account to continue reading and you'll get two months of unlimited access to the best in Jewish thought, culture, and politics

Register Already a subscriber? Sign in now