By Hamid Naficy
Volume 1 depicts and analyzes the early years of Iranian cinema. movie used to be brought in Iran in 1900, 3 years after the country’s first advertisement movie exhibitor observed the recent medium in nice Britain. An artisanal cinema subsidized via the ruling shahs and different elites quickly emerged. The presence of girls, either at the reveal and in motion picture homes, proved debatable until eventually 1925, while Reza Shah Pahlavi dissolved the Qajar dynasty. Ruling until eventually 1941, Reza Shah carried out a Westernization software meant to unite, modernize, and secularize his multicultural, multilingual, and multiethnic state. Cinematic representations of a fast-modernizing Iran have been inspired, the veil used to be outlawed, and dandies flourished. even as, images, motion picture construction, and film homes have been tightly managed. movie creation finally proved marginal to country formation. simply 4 silent characteristic movies have been produced in Iran; of the 5 Persian-language sound positive factors proven within the nation earlier than 1941, 4 have been made by way of an Iranian expatriate in India.
A Social historical past of Iranian Cinema
Volume 1: The Artisanal period, 1897–1941
Volume 2: The Industrializing Years, 1941–1978
Volume three: The Islamicate interval, 1978–1984
Volume four: The Globalizing period, 1984–2010
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Additional info for A Social History of Iranian Cinema, Volume 1: The Artisanal Era, 1897-1941
I remember being extremely anxious watching a particular scene involving voyeurism through a high window, the specifics of which I do not now recall. All I remember is intense emotion, anxiety, and suspense. I clutched my father for safety. My uncle Reza, who is only a few years older than me, also remembers that at ten, while watching Tarzan, he felt extremely frightened of the possibility of the lions charging and devouring him (Naficy 1986). As far as the movie house itself is concerned, my first recollection is of a long, narrow, place almost resembling a tunnel, with a high ceiling, filled with people, smoke, and noise.
My cousin, Alireza Naficy, eighteen years old (left), and his classmate, Homayun Shahriari (right), with the 35mm projector they built in 1955 in the backyard of Shahriai’s house in Isfahan. Still courtesy of Alireza Naficy xxxvi ho w i t al l b eg a n Electrical service stoppages were not the only source of movie interruption. Because of inferior projectors and old “junk” film prints, discussed in these pages, movies often broke during projection, causing projectionists to cut off strips of films when resplicing.
Soon, in another tragic but necessary step, the family broke up the Ibn Sina Library by dividing the books thematically among a half a dozen members’ homes and gardens, where they were dispersed in closets, backrooms, and basements. The final nail in the coffin of the library came when one night I and Nooshin, my youngest sister whose cute baby pictures I had taken only a few years before, fearing that the Ibn Sina patrons’ ledger may incriminate the family, wrapped it in layers of plastic for safekeeping and buried it deep under a plum tree in the yard in our Bagh Jennat house.