Before and After: Iran 1979

A Hopeful Picture: Women Parliamentarians of Iran in front of the gate of the Iranian Parliament (Majlis Shoraye Melli), mid 1970s

A Tale of Two Irans

Women in Iran before the Islamic Revolution in 1979. (photo: Nevit Dilmen, own work. Family album.)
Iran prior to 1979’s Islamic Revolution. (photo: Nevit Dilmen)

Life in Iran Before 1979

Iranians prior to 1979. (photo: Nevit Dilmen)
Female students in Iran prior to 1979. (photo: Nevit Dilmen)

Life in Iran After 1979

“The government derives its legitimacy from God, and proper government requires a radical Islamic reconstruction of society.” — Khomeini, in a recorded sermon.

Iranian Revolution, 1979.
A woman believed to be a supporter of the Shah is assailed by male revolutionaries in Tehran on 25 January 1979 ( Magnum )

No More Family Protection Laws

Strictly Enforced Dress Code

The Empowered Iranian Woman

The day 100,000 Iranian women protested the headscarf. On 8 March 1979, more than 100,000 women gathered on the streets of the Iranian capital to protest against the new Islamic government’s compulsory hijab ruling.

“The regime opposed all these demands and developed counter-strategies to divide the women’s movement and neutralize their struggle. Thereafter, the regime moved quickly to suppress the women’s movement, eliminate all women’s organizations, force women into the chador, segregate women in public places such as universities, schools, and government offices, and reduce women’s presence in public life by firing and retiring practices (nearly 24,000 women lost their jobs)” — Ali A. Mahdi, “The Iranian Women’s Movement: A Century Long Struggle.”

Keeping Up With the Khomeinis

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