The "Persian Literature" Section of Iransaga includes Classical and modern Poetry and Prose, and informative facts relating to notable writers, and poets both from the past and the present day.
(Please click on the "titles" to enter each section.)
A History and Analysis of Persian Literature
(This entire section has been taken from the book "Persian Literature", 'Columbia Lectures on Iranian Studies 3'. Art Arena is indebted to Ehsan Yarshater for his permission to include parts of the "Introductory Survey" from this informative book.)
A brief description of the origins of these popular tales
"One of the most famous collections of ancient tales is Alf Layla wa Layla, the Arabic name of One Thousand Nights and One Night, commonly known in English as The Arabian Nights. The original Arabic compiler is reputedly storyteller Abu abd-Allah Muhammed el-Gahshigar in the 9th century..."
A selection of poems by Classical Persian
Poets (in English translation).
From the Book: "Sixteen Persian Classics", by Mahmud Kianush
The origins and basis of Ferdowsi's epic, Shahnameh (The Book of Kings)
"This article was written by Mahmud Kianush, and it is part
of a review published in
Life and Works of a classic poet:
"Shams al-Din Muhammad Hafez was born in Shiraz between 1317 and 1326. He is known under his pen name Hafez (Koran-memorizer)..."
Ghazals (lyric poetry) by Hafez:
Life and works of one of Iran's greatest Sufi poets:
".... he was born in Shiraz in the late 12th century
AD ... and began life as a student of the Koran, which he later exchanged
for Sufism. During his life he travelled widely and returned to his native
town some time around 1256.
Life and Works of this outstanding Persian Sufi Sage and Poet:
"Jalal al-Din Rumi, was born in Balkh on the 30th September, 1207. His proper name was Mubammad, title Jalal al-Din and later 'Khudawandagar', 'lord'. In his poetry he used the pen-name "khamush" (meaning "silent") and from the 15th century came to be known as Mawlawi, the term deriving from his earlier title of Mulla-yi rum, 'the learned master of Anatolia'..."
A brief background and a selection of words and definitions from Obayd-i Zakani's "Satirical Social Dictionary":
".... Obayd-i Zakani (14th century poet and satirist), is the unequalled master of parody and social satire ..."
A brief description of the original legend in Arabic literature, and its Persian version:
"The story of Layli and Madjnun is one of the most popular legends of the Middle East. Its original version dates back to around 7th Century AD, and can be found in Arabic literature..."
A brief background and review of Fitzgerald's Rubáiyát:
"The 12th century Persian poet Omar Khayyám, is well known in the West, through the work of the English clergyman, poet and translator Edward Fitzgerald..."
Brief biography and a poem by each poet:
"Iran and the Persian language have a rich poetic heritage, extending for a thousand years from the classical era of the 10th - 17th centuries into the present day. Among modern poets, social and political themes have been prominent, and there have been many notable women poets..."
An analysis of the Poet and his works, including one of his poems entitled: "IT IS NIGHT"
From the Book: "Modern Persian Poetry" by Mahmud Kianush
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Copyright © '99, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 K. Kianush, Art Arena