June 29, 2005

Women writers reaching historic sales numbers in Iran . . .


“Over the past decade, Iran’s best-selling fiction lists have become dominated by women, an unprecedented development abetted by recent upheavals in Iranian society,” observes Nazila Fathi in a New York Times report. There are about as many women writing as men, says Fathi, “But the women’s books are outselling the men’s by far, thanks to simple – some critics say simplistic – language and compellingly personal narratives, often delving into once-taboo subjects like romance and sex. While the average Iranian novel is issued in print runs of 5,000 copies, some women’s books have enjoyed printings exceeding 100,000.”

Dennis Johnson is the founder of MobyLives, and the co-founder and co-publisher of Melville House.