Moaveni, Azadeh 1976–
Moaveni, Azadeh 1976–
Journalist. Middle-East correspondent for Time magazine; covered the war in Iraq for the Los Angeles Times.
Lipstick Jihad: A Memoir of Growing up Iranian in America and American in Iran, Public Affairs (New York, NY), 2005.
Azadeh Moaveni is an Iranian American who grew up in California and established herself as a journalist. She visited relatives in Iran in the late 1990s and then moved there in 2000 as a correspondent for Time magazine. In her book Lipstick Jihad: A Memoir of Growing up Iranian in America and American in Iran, Moaveni writes both about her time in Iran and about growing up in America, where she felt caught between two cultures. Moaveni's memoir describes how, in many ways, she is a typical California girl, enthralled with the popular culture of the United States. Nevertheless, she is still trained in and practices some of the traditional Iranian ways, such as serving tea to her elders. Although Moaveni writes about her personal journey to reconcile her two cultural heritages once she moves to Iran, she also focuses on the country she dreamed of as a young girl but found to be very different from her imagination once she arrived there. In the book she discusses the country's varied culture, its politics, and its long-standing combative relationship with the United States.
"The author's account of trying, on the one hand, to be a foreign reporter under a theocratic regime, and, on the other, a normal young woman with a career and family and her own apartment, is beautifully nuanced, complex, and illuminating," according to a Kirkus Reviews contributor. Maria C. Bagshaw, writing in the Library Journal, called the book "a charming and informative memoir." A Publishers Weekly contributor was equally enthusiastic, commenting: "Although she reports on the overall tumult and repression felt by Iranians between the 1999 prodemocracy student demonstrations and the 2002 ‘Axis of Evil’ declaration, the … dominant story is more intimate." In addition, Entertainment Weekly contributor Gilbert Cruz noted that the author "shines a fascinating light on a nation at odds with itself."
In 2006, Moaveni and coauthor Shirin Ebadi published Iran Awakening: A Memoir of Revolution and Hope. Ebadi, an Iranian lawyer, made news internationally in 2003, when she became the first Iranian and only the fifth Muslim ever to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. The honor was given to her on behalf of her work for human rights, particularly those of women and children. Iran Awakening is her story. Ebadi was appointed a judge when she was just twenty-three years old, but she lost that position less than ten years later, following the revolution in Iran. One of her family members was executed in the political upheaval, and Ebadi discovered that she herself was on a list of people marked for political assassination. David Nalle, a contributor to Middle East Policy, found that this book creates "a compelling picture of life in Iran during the last two or three tumultuous decades." Reviewing Iran Awakening for Commentary, David Warren wrote: "Moaveni's hand is apparent in the style of this memoir, in its journalistic pacing, and in the facility with which colorful historical sidebars are woven into the narrative. The book is very easy to read. It is also quite troubling."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Moaveni, Azadeh, Lipstick Jihad: A Memoir of Growing up Iranian in America and American in Iran, Public Affairs (New York, NY), 2005.
Biography, summer, 2006, Sparkle Hayter, review of Iran Awakening: A Memoir of Revolution and Hope.
Booklist, February 15, 2005, John Green, review of Lipstick Jihad: A Memoir of Growing up Iranian in America and American in Iran, p. 1040.
Commentary, October, 2006, review of Iran Awakening, p. 64.
Curve, June, 2005, Rachel Llewellyn, review of Lipstick Jihad, p. 80.
Entertainment Weekly, March 25, 2005, Gilbert Cruz, review of Lipstick Jihad, p. 78.
Houston Chronicle, April 8, 2005, Rachel Graves, review of Lipstick Jihad.
Journal of International Affairs, March 22, 2007, Amy L. Keith, review of Iran Awakening, p. 220.
Kirkus Reviews, January 15, 2005, review of Lipstick Jihad, p. 106; April 1, 2006, review of Iran Awakening, p. 333.
Library Journal, February 15, 2005, Maria C. Bagshaw, review of Lipstick Jihad, p. 140; May 15, 2006, Lisa Klopfer, review of Iran Awakening, p. 107.
Middle East Policy, winter, 2006, David Nalle, review of Iran Awakening.
Mother Jones, March 9, 2005, Michal Lumsden, "Lipstick Jihad: An Interview with Azadeh Moaveni."
New Statesman, July 23, 2007, "History in the Making," p. 61.
New York Times Book Review, July 16, 2006, "A Dissenting Voice," p. 14.
Publishers Weekly, January 17, 2005, review of Lipstick Jihad, p. 42; March 27, 2006, review of Iran Awakening, p. 74.
This Magazine, May 1, 2006, Vladi Ivanov, review of Iran Awakening, p. 39.
Azadeh Moaveni Home Page, http://www.azadeh.info (April 3, 2008).
Blog Critics, http://blogcritics.org/ (November 5, 2006), Natalie Bennett, review of Iran Awakening.
Lipstick Jihad, http://www.lipstickjihad.com (April 7, 2008), profile of Azadeh Moaveni.
London Times Online, http://entertainment.timesonline.co.uk (May 14, 2006), Hala Jaber, review of Iran Awakening.
MuslimWakeUp.com, http://www.muslimwakeup.com/ (March 1, 2005), Bibi Eng, "Not Your Mullah's Iran: An Interview with Azadeh Moaveni."
Nation Online, http://www.thenation.com/ (May 29, 2006), Reza Aslan, review of Iran Awakening.