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                                        Volume. 11881

Hojjatollah Ayyubi’s “1970 Days” discussed in Tehran
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ICO Director Hojjatollah Ayyubi holds a copy of his “1970 Days on 6 Jean Bart Street” during the unveiling ceremony of the book in Tehran on December 19, 2013. (ISNA)
ICO Director Hojjatollah Ayyubi holds a copy of his “1970 Days on 6 Jean Bart Street” during the unveiling ceremony of the book in Tehran on December 19, 2013. (ISNA)
TEHRAN – A group of cineastes and scholars discussed “1970 Days on 6 Jean Bart Street”, a book containing memories of Iran Cinema Organization (ICO) Director Hojjatollah Ayyubi during the days he served as Iran’s cultural attaché in Paris, during the unveiling ceremony of the work in Tehran on Thursday.
 
Film producer Fereshteh Taerpur, scholar and journalist Yunes Shokrkhah, and filmmakers Reza Mirkarimi and Rakhshan Bani-Etemad commented on the book, the Persian service of MNA reported on Friday.
 
Addressing Ayyubi, Taerpur began by saying, “I recommend that every individual read the book. This book is a historical document like Ali Hatami’s “Haji Washington” (1982). We experienced your discipline, support and cultural understanding in Paris. I know working inside the country is much harder than working outside, because if you have lots to say in Iran, it is deliberately not heard.”
 
Shokrkhah next spoke briefly and said, “Perhaps this book seems to be a daily note, but I believe it has a scenario since it enjoys suspense. The texts are certainly not set one after another by accident.
 
“This book is a message to Tehran and it’s not a souvenir for Paris,” he added.
 
He continued that he believes Ayyubi is a specialized cultural figure. His position as the director of ICO is a good opportunity. “I hope we make use of his experience to get better and facilitated results.”
 
Bani-Etemad called Ayyubi an individual who is familiar with international relations and has a nonpolitical opinion towards culture.
 
“We Iranians are not famous for writing memoirs or reports, unlike the foreign countries that are active in this field. However, Ayyubi was brave enough to publish his notes which are influential to the cultural movement, “she said.
 
This book can be a good example for all the individuals who like to work in this field, he added.
 
Ayyubi also spoke and expressed his thanks to Salis Publications as publisher of the book. “I did not think these notes were worth publishing, but when I showed them to some friends, they encouraged me to do so.
 
“Writers are usually highlighted in books that contain personal memoirs, but I made an effort to highlight Persian art,” he continued.
 
“Perhaps this book does not reveal how much the world is in need of Persian culture. Everywhere, there are words about Iran and the doors are open to us. We are used to playing before empty seats, but we need to show the people who are eager how to become familiar with Persian culture,” he continued.
 
He called the position a good opportunity for cultural attaches since it gives them a chance to describe Iran’s attractions through the language of art.
 
“We should be aware that the train of diplomacy should start with art and culture,” he concluded.
 
Ayyubi has written several books and articles including “Cultural Policy of France: the State & Art” (2009) and “Emergence & Persistence of Political Parties in the West” (2003). 
 
RM/YAW
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