Chapter

A Celebration and a Festival

Gholam R. Afkhami

in The Life and Times of the Shah

Published by University of California Press

Published in print December 2009 | ISBN: 9780520253285
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520942165 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520253285.003.0018
A Celebration and a Festival

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The celebration of the anniversary of twenty-five hundred years of Iranian monarchy in October 1971 was meant as a tribute to Iran's history, an affirmation of Iran's progress under the Pahlavis, and a testimony to the shah's achievements during his reign. Instead, the event became a rallying point for his enemies, who used the celebration's glitter and gaudiness to launch a widespread attack on him and his policies. The same was true of the Shiraz Art Festival, designed to promote “the arts and the appreciation for traditional Iranian art forms,” to elevate the standard of culture in the country, and to bring to Iran the best, newest, and most avant-garde art of the world. The festival, though artistically successful, became politically an issue of considerable consequence for the regime and a strain on the dynamics of art and politics in the country.

Keywords: Iranian monarchy; Iran history; Pahlavis; shah; Shiraz Art Festival; politics

Chapter.  8750 words. 

Subjects: Asian History

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