Jalal Al-e Ahmad Literary Award selects no winner

November 24, 2008

TEHRAN -- The award ceremony of the Jalal Al-e Ahmad Literary Award was held here on Saturday at Tehran’s Vahdat Hall.

Each winner of the award would receive 110 Bahar Azadi gold coins (worth over $200,000), but this year, Iran’s most lucrative literary award had no winner.
The entries were judged in the five categories of short story, novel, literary criticism, documentation, and historiography, and afterwards, the best writer in each section was honored.
Iran’s Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance Mohammad-Hossein Saffar Harandi, and the director of the Cultural Committee of the Iranian Parliament, Gholam-Ali Haddad-Adel were among the participants.
The Culture Minister was first to speak and said that the award was a good excuse to bring literary figures together, adding, “As Jalal left his experience for us, other writers can act in the same manner and present their heritage to their country.”
“Jalal Al-e Ahmad (1923-1969) is one of the most outstanding figures of Persian literature. We need more active writers like him and that is why this award is arranged,” he remarked.
Haddad-Adel was next who spoke of the impressive character of Jalal over three decades of Iran’s history. He stated, “The legacy of Jalal is not only his, it is a legacy for an entire generation and by studying his life works, we would find out more about a specific period of our own political history.”
“There are three aspects of Jalal which one can hardly deny: his high talent, his honesty, and his courage,” he added.
Afterwards, the selected authors were honored and awarded with 25 gold coins (about $5,000) as follows:
* Short story: “Killing Dragons” by Yusef Alikhani.
* Novel: “The Rule of the Game” by Firuz Zanuzi Jalali.
* Literary criticism: “The Mirror’s Rite” by Hossein-Ali Qobadi.
* Documentation and historiography: “The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) from Existence to Extinction” by the Political Studies and Research Institute.