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Iran Awakening: A Memoir of Revolution and Hope [Hardcover]

Shirin Ebadi
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)

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Book Description

4 May 2006
In this remarkable book, Shirin Ebadi, Iranian human rights lawyer and activist, and Nobel Peace Prize laureate, tells her extraordinary story. Dr Ebadi is a tireless voice for reform in her native Iran, where she argues for a new interpretation of Islamic law in harmony with vital human rights such as democracy, equality before the law, religious freedom and freedom of speech. She is known for defending dissident figures, and for the establishment of a number of non-profit grassroots organisations dedicated to human rights. In 2003, she became the first Muslim woman, and the first Iranian, to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. She will chronicle her childhood and upbringing before the Revolution, her education and student years at the University of Tehran, her marriage and its challenges, her religious faith, and her life as a mother and as an advocate for the oppressed. And, as a human rights campaigner, in particular for women, children and political prisoners in Iran, her book will be a must-read for anyone interested in the life story and beliefs of a courageous and unusual woman, as well as those interested in current events (especially those of the Middle East), and those who want to know the truth about the position of women in a Muslim society.


Product details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Rider & Co (4 May 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1846040124
  • ISBN-13: 978-1846040122
  • Product Dimensions: 21.4 x 14.4 x 2.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 851,111 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

A staunch advocate for human rights in her country, Ms Ebadi represents hope that Islam and democracy are indeed compatible -- Azar Nafisi, author of Reading 'Lolita' in Tehran

Ebadi's inspiring memoir...offers a first-hand look at her remarkable life and Iran's human rights struggle -- The Times

One of the most remarkable resistance heroines of our dangerous times -- The Telegraph

Riveting -- The Sunday Times

The riveting story of an amazing and very brave woman living through turbulent times. And she emerges with head unbowed. -- Archbishop Desmond Tutu

Book Description

Fascinating autobiography by the first Muslim woman, and the first Iranian, to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
49 of 51 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating read... difficult to put down 14 Jun 2006
Format:Hardcover
Ms. Ebadi's book "Iran Awakening" is one of the best English books about Iran that I have read. The book is essentially a memoir of Ms. Ebadi's life from the time she enters Tehran University and graduates as the top Law student up to a few months ago when she was representing the reporter Akbar Ganji as his lawyer.

The book is concisely and clearly written with detailed first hand accounts of her life in pre and post revolution Iran. Ms Ebadi's work is independent of any political organisation and as such she has pointed out many of the faults she saw and experienced in the Shah's regime, the Islamic Republic and the United States. However, saying that, the majority of the criticism is levelled at the Islamic Republic's poor record of Human Rights and the incredible gulf between rights of men and women.

Reading the book it was more than clear to me that the Nobel Prize committee made the best decision they could have to award the Peace prize to Ms Ebadi. Being a lawyer in Iran is difficult enough, but being female and a lawyer and working for Human Rights is not only an uphill struggle but more like a free climber dangling freely knowing that any minute now consciousness could be taken from you. In addition to this, let's not forget that she is a wife and a mother too which as she writes so passionately about in her book, has provided her with many equally challenging dilemmas.

There are many English books written about Iran but this book is different. This book is authored by an Iranian who has lived every day of her life in Iran; who has got to know the system both from the inside, as a civil servant, and from the outside, as a lawyer for its victims; has specifically written the book for an English audience.
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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Memoir of a Country 19 May 2006
Format:Hardcover
I have been eagerly awaiting the release of Shirin Ebadi's book, as I have been intrigued by her character and modesty ever since she won the Nobel Prize in 2003.

This is a book that says so much in a simple and classy language; A story of a woman's struggle- a very devotedly stubborn woman's struggle - to stand steadfast at her career, society, and family- in a country that had changed face and direction in a glimpse.

"Fortunately or unfortunately," [Ebadi's favourite opening statement], this is not a much awaited book of scandal, neither it is a recount of tragedy, reproach, or blame. It is a book where Ebadi -despite all she's been through- heralds in the future, and the awakening of Iran. It is a book of fundamentalism in its most beautiful form: of love, of patriotism, of unyielding will, and of upholding principles.

Critical but not offensive, inspiring but not patronizing. It is Shirin Ebadi's "private" memoir of a whole country.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Amazing Journey 14 May 2008
Format:Hardcover
This book makes you feel as though you know the author and share with her the experiences as she tells you of both the dreadful and good things that have happened to her. I want to tell everyone to read it and learn how such a lot of people have to struggle to obtain rights that we take for granted in our democracy which is far from perfect but better than the alternative.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Women's Iran 1 Jun 2007
Format:Paperback
No matter where you are when reading Shirin Ebadi's account of events in the Iran of past three decades, you'll see and feel the vivid streets of Tehran, people's whispers of hope and fear and take a glimpse 'behind the veil'.

Being forced into a career fallback from judgeship to a clerk, Madame Ebadi doesn't allow the authorities the luxury of enjoying the ousting of yet another female intellectual. An activist at heart, she doesn't give up, becomes a human rights defender and in an atmosphere of neverending closures of basic freedoms and rights for women, she nevertheless achieves to awaken her fellow citizens' minds pointing to the absurdity of rules that embed the evryday lives of the women amongst them.

Her account is a fresh reminder for all of the value of democratic rights and freedoms that can co-exist with Islam or any other religion for that matter for it's all about true and moderate interpretation of religious rules that a society can pull itself into a new age appealing to all generations. She earned a Nobel Prize for this unbiased Iranian take on universal values.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Accurate account and beautifully written... 2 Feb 2008
Format:Paperback
I was fascinated by Ms Ebadi's account of her life both prior to the Revolution working as a succesful young woman in her own right, then the struggles she faced in the post-Revolution years and how she has corageously battled on to try and improve the Rights of Women and Children in Iran. Ms Ebadi is a credit to our nation and a postive force to be reckoned with!... I hope to read more of her work in the near future....
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5.0 out of 5 stars A great insight into Iran... 23 Dec 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I brought this as I was curious about Iran after watching that Ben Afleck film at the cinema (the one with the hostages..... the name escapes me). This book gives a great insight into the politics of Iran from the time of the Shah up to the current time. You can understand the anti america feeling that Iranians have but you can also see the human rights violations that came about after the revolution. I'm not particularly political but it's worth learning something about Iran considering they are often in the news and George W branded them as part of the axis of evil.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Very interesting book
It s clearly written, gives an account of her life and of Iranian history, which is very interesting and opens a window on the Islamic word, which is often viewed through... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Francesca Bianco
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
I found this an excellent book about the current situation in Iran. It doesn't pull any punches, but honestly and accurately describes life in Iran. I would highly recommend it.
Published 6 months ago by Anonymous
5.0 out of 5 stars read it!
This a fabulous book, a true story told with no holds barred. A very different picture from what we are fed in the media.
Published 9 months ago by Merel's Grandma
4.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring
The story of the life of a remarkable woman during the history of modern Iran. Worth reading for anyone interested in the human story behind the over-simplified tabloid headlines
Published 15 months ago by Bill Anderson
4.0 out of 5 stars A good memoir from Shirin Ebadi
I read this book not knowing much about Shirin Ebadi other than her, winning the Noble Peace prize, so it was interesting to read how she deserved it. Read more
Published on 28 Nov 2011 by Afshari
5.0 out of 5 stars An interesting and engaging read
It is an interesting and engaging read and surveys the heights and downs of its author's life and career. Read more
Published on 13 Sep 2011 by S. MOHAMADI
4.0 out of 5 stars A great reading.
A very moving story. Did not want to put the book down once I had started it.
Published on 18 Aug 2010 by Colin Revell
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
This book was excellent I thought the author was naive at first but I admire her greatly and wish many more Iranians and peoples of the world were as enlightened as she appears t... Read more
Published on 9 May 2010 by R. Packham
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent service
I got the book very quickly and it was in an excellent conditions. I will definitely using this service again.
Published on 2 Dec 2009 by kasiulka6
5.0 out of 5 stars Supporter of establishing an islamic state be warned specially if you...
It is sad to read this accurate and well written account of suffering of Iranian women in particular and professionals, educated individuals under this brutal and backward... Read more
Published on 20 Oct 2009 by Bahram
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