Tuesday, April 14, 2009

dolce & gabbana in teheran


Dolce & Gabbana hovers
on a billboard. Demonstrators
herded by divine dictators
luxuriate listlessly as lovers
in the heat, and pay attention
not to Dolce & Gabbana,
but to words upon a banner
which Greatest Satan mention.

“Death to America,” they say,
and the demonstrators shout,
But at home how many doubt
this message, and would like to pay
for Dolce & Gabbana stuff?
I’d like to think that most of them
would rather do this than condemn
the land that doesn’t call their bluff.

Michiko Kakutani reviews “Honeymoon in Teheran” by Azadeh Moaveni (“Life in Iran, Where Freedom is Deferred,” NYT, April 14, 2009):

Ms. Moaveni, who grew up in California, the daughter of Iranian émigrés, and who has covered the country for Time magazine, left Tehran in 2002, in the wake of President Bush’s depiction of Iran in his State of the Union address as part of the “axis of evil.” When she returned to Tehran in 2005 to cover the presidential election, she was initially encouraged by changes she saw in the city and thought “Iranians had reached a tacit accommodation with the government over which taboos might be reconsidered.” Novels by women, full of romance and sex, dominated the best-seller lists; students had started underground rock bands; and Iranians, “accustomed to a bland, mullah-controlled existence lacking in entertainment and retail” prospects, could now choose among a variety of household products, American-style foods and designer goods. (A billboard for Dolce & Gabbana, she notes, weirdly loomed over a site where demonstrators gathered to chant “Death to America.”)

© 2009 Gershon Hepner 4/14/09

No comments:

Post a Comment