'Locating the Archive: the search for "Nurafkan"'

Motamedi-Fraser, Mariam. 2015. 'Locating the Archive: the search for "Nurafkan"'. In: Anthony Downey, ed. Dissonant Archives: Contemporary Visual Culture and Contested Narratives in the Middle East. London and New York: I.B .Tauris. ISBN 978-1-784-53-4110 [Book Section]

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Abstract or Description

In 2009, by chance, I came upon an archive in the Bodleian Library in Oxford. It turned out that I was to be involved with this archive in different ways (reading and researching it, helping to raise conservation funds to conserve it, writing inventories of it, and, ultimately, writing about it), over a period of approximately four years. The archive is named after an unpublished manuscript, Nurafkan, which lies at its heart. Nurafkan, or Irradiant in translation, was written by Ali Mirdrakvandi during the 1940s, while Iran was occupied by British and American forces. It is conspicuous that Nurafkan – which runs to 15 volumes and is perhaps 500,000 words long – should be written in English, for Ali came from a nomadic family from Lorestan. Ali's choice of language has raised suspicions in both Britain and Iran: what events must have unfolded for a book like this to be written? And what role, in particular, might the British have played in its creation?...

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29 May 2015Published

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Date Deposited:

09 Jul 2015 12:19

Last Modified:

19 Feb 2018 13:20



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