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Forugh Farrokhzad

Arguably the most famous woman in the history of Persian literature, Farrokhzad was born in Tehran to a middle-class family of seven children. She married at seventeen and divorced within three years, painfully and unwillingly relinquishing her only son to her husband and his family. She never remarried. Instead Farrokhzad turned to poetry and film and led an independent life. Farrokhzad was a poet of great audacity and extraordinary talent. Her poetry was the poetry of protest-- protest through revelation—revelation of the innermost world of women (a taboo subject until then), their intimate secrets and desires, their sorrows, longings, aspirations and at times even their articulation through silence. Her expressions of physical and emotional intimacy, much lacking in Persian women’s poetry up to that point, placed her at the center of controversy, even among the intellectuals of the time. On February 14, 1967, at thirty-two, she died in an automobile accident.

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