Title: The Revolution of Iran '79
Photographer(s): Maryam Zandi
Writer(s): Maryam Zandi
Designer(s): Hossein Filizadeh
Publisher(s): Nazar Publishers, Teheran, Iran
Language(s): English, Farsi, French
Size: 25 x 32 cm
Binding: Hardcover with dust jacket
Nation(s) and year(s) of Protest: Iran, 1979
I took my camera and ran. There was yet another demonstration at Enghelab Square. I had to go. I reached the square just as those days …
The 24th of Esfand Square and Shah Reza Street were crowded. Thousands of people were shouting slogans for freedom and against the dictatorship of the Shah with clenched fists. People were stamping furiously and shouting: Say, “Death, Death to the Shah!” They were carrying different placards and some were taking photographs with their small cameras. In spite of governmental threats and warnings, people were out on the streets, together with their fists and voices, and I was there with my little daughter and my camera.
I couldn’t stay at home. Events had been taking place for some time and I was roaming the city camera in hand .I felt responsible. I had to take photographs, to record, what was taking place. I needed to immortalize the portrait of people rising up for freedom. It was very crowded and I couldn’t see much. I reached a bus station and decided to climb up its cabin, but it seemed impossible with a baby in my arms. A lady was standing nearby. I asked her to hold my daughter for a few minutes. She agreed, under one condition. I asked what her condition was. She wanted me to shout: “Long Live Khomeini!” I did, of course. She took my daughter and I climbed up. Once I saw the sea of people I was frightened. I had never seen so many in one place.
following on her site
Four decades on, photographee like Maryam Zandi has been given rare permits to publish photobooks of their images of the days of the revolution. According to their publisher, the younger generation of Iranians are very interested in images that depict that cusp in their history. The treasury of photographs by these local photojournalists provides them with a chance to review their history independently from the official narrative and provide a fuller picture of those turbulent days.
Zandi fought long and hard to have the book, which spans the turbulent winter of 1978-9 when people gathered to topple the Shah, published in the form she wanted, with nearly 200 photos. Under the administrations of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the authorities said it could be allowed only with some parts removed - something she refused.