Code: 57134 A

TEHRAN.(Iranart) –March 15 marks Parvin E’tesami Day in Iran to commemorate one of the most famous Iranian female poets, the first major Iranian poetess of the 20th century.

Based on her adherence to traditional literature, she composed poems with moral, educational, religious, political and social themes.

Rakhshandeh E’tesami, who is better known as Parvin E’tesami, was born on March 17, 1907, in Tabriz. She was the daughter of Yousef E’tesami Ashtiani, a writer and translator, Mehr News Agency wrote.

Yousef E’tesami was elected as the representative of the people of Tabriz in the National Assembly. Therefore, Parvin had to move to Tehran with her family early in life.

As a child, Parvin became acquainted with constitutionalists and cultural figures and learned literature with her father and with masters such as Ali-Akbar Dehkhoda and Mohammad-Taqi Bahar.

In addition to formal schooling at the Iran Bethel School in Tehran and graduating in 1924, Parvin learned Persian and Arabic from her father. She excelled as a student throughout her school years and even taught English language and literature at the same school. Parvin also wrote poems while studying.

For her graduation, she wrote the poem, ‘A Twig of a Wish’ about the struggles facing Iranian women and the need for their education.

The first edition of her divan (book of collected poetry) consisted of 156 poems and appeared in 1935. After the publication of the first edition of her divan, she worked for several months at today’s Kharazmi University, in 1938-39.

During Parvin E’tesami’s life, the government awarded scientists, scholars and great men of science and literature medals of merit; a medal that is a sign of gratitude and respect from the government for the scientific and cultural services of the person in question.

In 1936, Parvin was awarded a third-degree Medal of Art and Culture, but she did not accept the medal. She did not even accept Reza Shah Pahlavi’s offer to become the tutor of the royal family.

The second edition of her book appeared shortly after her death in 1941. It consisted of 209 different compositions, totaling 5606 distiches.

During Parvin’s life, factors such as her father, her father's friends, and most importantly, the political and then social developments in Iranian society, had influenced her personality and thought.

Parvin was acquainted with Western classical literature due to her father’s job as a political figure. Literary meetings in which Yousef E’tesami participated played an important part in shaping Parvin’s political views. Her presence at Iran Bethel School also made her familiar with Western ideas and women’s issues in the West.

Her poetry follows the classical Persian tradition in its form and substance, in perhaps a deliberate defiance in the face of the modernistic trends in Persian poetry that were becoming popular in her time.

Parvin’s poems include issues such as oppression, anti-poverty, justice and idealism. Her poetry expressed the pain of poverty and exploitation and called on the masses to revolt against transgressors. Her poetry articulated the social discord of her time and posited that the eternal war between good and evil is a product of the human mind. Many of Parvin’s poems express her criticism of kings and the tyranny of the powerful; many have a narrative content in which Parvin brings the debate between two things in the form of a story.

A book of poetry by E’tesami was translated into French by Iranian ‎translator Jalal Alavinia and published in France.‎

The book bears a preface by eminent Iranian poet of the early 20th century, Mohammad-Taqi Bahar, and was released by Hartmann Publishing which earlier presented a collection titled, ‘Iran in Transition,’ which includes works by Iranian writers and poets.

Source: Iran Daily

Parvin E’tesami
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