Saturday, August 27, 2005

for ____'s sake

That Space responds to John P. and Amardeep S.:
John Pistelli, recognising in Nafisi the familiarly deceptive apostasy of 60s radicals, begs to differ:

[Nafisi's] book [Reading Lolita in Tehran] is of course not apolitical and you don't have to read the whole thing to know that; everything about it, from its cover blurbs to its acknowledgments page in which the author thanks Paul Wolfowitz, to its credulous critical reception, looks political.

Indeed. One only has to think of the actions of another unthinkably repressive regime to recognise a blindspot in the critical reception. This regime has destroyed many other women's lives in many other nations (though not, as yet, Iran). It's been happening for years and it's happening right now. This does not seem to trouble very much those celebrating the romance of Nafisi's literary resistance. As professional reviewers, they know what can and cannot be said in literary reviews. This is why they are professionals in the first place. So much for a free and open imagination. As Pistelli says: Nafisi, militantly apolitical as she now imagines herself, is actually objectively pro-fascist.

I haven't read the book (it never really grabbed me when I tried). So I couldn't possibly comment.

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