A Cup of Sin: Selected Poems

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Syracuse University Press, 1999 - Poetry - 182 pages
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As a Muslim woman writing in Iran, Simin Behbahani's collections contain some of the seminal work of twentieth-century Persian literature. Written over almost a half-century, much of her work reflects the traumatic experiences that have shaped recent iranian history: revolution and war. In a balance of artful inquiry and shocking realism, Behbahani's language and imagery probe the depths of political, cultural, and moral oppression. In the traditional verse of the ghazal, she improvises with meter to echo and provide new interpretations.

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The Perfume of Coffee and Thoughts of You
I Swear on the Fig I Swear on the Olive
Translating Simin Behbahani Kaveh Safa

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About the author (1999)

Simin Behbahani was born Simin Khalili on July 20 1927 in Iran. She studied law at Tehran University in the 1950s. She became a poet who wrote of the joys of love, demanded equal rights for women, and spoke out about the challenges facing those living in her homeland. She was awarded the Simone de Beauvoir Prize for Women's Freedom in 2009 and was nominated twice for the Nobel Prize in literature. She died of heart failure and breathing problems on August 14, 2014 at the age of 87.

Milani teaches Persian language and literature and women's studies at the University of Virginia.

Safa has taught courses in anthropology and Persian at the Universities of Virginia and Chicago.

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