Da (Mother) 13

The Memoirs of Seyyedeh Zahra Hoseyni

The next day I saw to Alis pack, as I normally did. There were some bloodstained clothes and a pair of boots in it. I pulled the clothes out, washed them, and hung them to dry on the clothesline. A couple of hours later, Ali returned. As soon as he saw the clothes on the line, he let out a deep sigh and said testily, “Why did you touch those clothes?

Da (Mother) 12

The Memoirs of Seyyedeh Zahra Hoseyni

Ali was rarely at home after the victory of the revolution. He joined the Civilian Construction Corps to help in farming and the development of villages in deprived regions. Many nights he went on public safety patrols and didn’t return until morning. Not many months had passed after the revolution when word spread in the town that some of the heads of the Arab clans wanted independence from Iran. These were the same people who collaborated with SAVAK before the ...

Da (Mother) 11

The Memoirs of Seyyedeh Zahra Hoseyni

Whenever father had to go somewhere else to work, he had let Ali take his place, knowing that his son was disciplined enough to carry out any task he gave him. And the older he got, the more difficult were the jobs he took on. Working beside father, Ali gradually learned construction, plumbing, and welding. His eyes became bloodshot from the welding, and the pain would keep him awake all night. But, by the time he was eighteen, he was a master welder and mason.

Da (Mother) 10

The Memoirs of Seyyedeh Zahra Hoseyni

Ali, who had witnessed all this strife as a child, was the first of us to go to work. In the dead of summer or in winter when it got cooler, he would sell gum to people at the gas station (famous as Dieselabad) on the Ahvaz-Khorramshahr road. He would also sell corn on the cob roasted over a fire. One day I insisted he take me with him so I could see how he did it. I wouldn’t take no for an answer.

Da (Mother) 9

The Memoirs of Seyyedeh Zahra Hoseyni

With school over we moved and got away from our nasty landlord. Then began a period of going from one house to another every so often in the Shahabad neighborhood. Each place had its advantages and disadvantages; we had no choice but to take the good with the bad. One place had a good landlord who looked out for us, while another had a nasty one who would do things to annoy us.

Da (Mother) 8

The Memoirs of Seyyedeh Zahra Hoseyni

On that day our next-door neighbors were having a circumcision ceremony. Mohsen went up on the roof to watch. I was busy playing with Mansur in the room when I heard Leila shrieking, “Zahra come quickly, Mohsens dead!” I thought that she was kidding, but when she swore on Uncle Hoseynis life, I did not know what I was going to do with the baby but I raced into the courtyard just the same.

Da (Mother) 7

The Memoirs of Seyyedeh Zahra Hoseyni

We got to Iranian customs at evening prayer time. Uncle Hoseyni came to look after us. It took a little time to go through customs and immigration. Father was waiting outside the customs area. It had been months since we last saw him. At first we shied away from him, but soon we went toward him. He hugged and kissed each of us, as tears rolled down his cheeks. Then we went to Uncle Hoseynis house.

Da (Mother) 6

The Memoirs of Seyyedeh Zahra Hoseyni

Mother did everything she could to get permission to visit father in prison. She made daily trips to various government offices, only to return fed up and tired, telling grandfather and mothers Aunt Mimi where she had been and to whom she had spoken. Ali and I would be all ears when they talked, and, after mother had spoken to grandfather and Mimi, we nagged and nagged her about seeing father.

Da (Mother) 5

The Memoirs of Seyyedeh Zahra Hoseyni

One: Early life in Iraq: We had no word of father for several months. His political activities kept him away from home so often we had gotten used to his absences. But this time was different; he had been gone for a very long time. Mother told us father had gotten involved in politics, meeting secretly with people after he had stopped working in grandfathers mill and had started in the gunny-sack bazaar.

Da (Mother) 4

The Memoirs of Seyyedeh Zahra Hoseyni

When I was around fourteen, I read the book Zanan-e Qahreman (“Women Heroes”). Apart from the lives of the women of early Islam, what interested me was the figure of Djamila Boupacha, though it was hard to accept that a young woman would, with all her being, enter into a one-sided struggle against the occupiers of her country. To preserve the honor and independence of her people, she bore all the barbarous tortures of the French but never gave in to the disgrace of occupation.
The Anniversary of Takeover of the U.S. Embassy

A Genuine Question

I do not forget the time when the young people had taken over the spy nest and there was a tumult — maybe less than a month had passed — and we had just come from Hajj. Mr. Hashemi, another person and I — whose I do not want to mention his name — went from Tehran to Qom to ask Imam they have finally been caught, what should we do with them now? Should they be kept, not keeping, what should we do?

A Part of Memoirs of a Soldier

The embankment where we were stationed led to the Khorramshahr asphalt road. For this reason, the Iraqis tried hard to recapture it. And finally, near at noon, they were able to settle in the embankment next to the asphalt road and shoot diagonally towards us from there. We had no choice but to retreat. Captain Barati, the battalion commander, ordered two kilometers behind to build an embankment for us to settle there.

Your Problem is Different / You Hinted Not to Hit More

One day, they came to me and said: “We want to take you to the prosecutors office so that the investigator will interrogate you.” We had been famous for the meetings we organized as the Anti-Baha’i Association. At that time, there were many people in Jahrom that worked in different jobs; Among other things, there was a sergeant major in Shahrbani (law enforcement force), who stood guard duty instead of the guard ...

Privacy and Its Niceties in Oral History

Privacy in the process of recording and publishing memories is an issue that has attracted attention of activists in this field and those interested in legal issues in recent years with the expansion of activities of memoirist individuals and groups. Oral history interviews include close and personal relationships between interviewers, narrators and their organizational sponsors. This relationship is important for all groups. Interviewers feel an obligation to the people who have allowed ...