(Kaveh Ehsani is assistant professor of international studies at DePaul University. Arang Keshavarzian is associate professor of Middle East and Islamic studies at New York University. Both are editors of Middle East Report. Norma Claire Moruzzi is associate professor of political science and gender and women’s studies at the University of Illinois-Chicago.)
This week on Voices of the Middle East & North Africa, we continue our coverage of the ongoing protests of the election in Iran by looking at the youth movement and the role it has played in the recent protest with professor and author Asef Bayat. Later in the program, Yorke University sociologist Haideh Moghissi will discuss the prominent role of women in post-revolutionary Iran.
Voices of the Middle East and North Africa – June 24, 2009 at 7:00pm
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We speak with Eric Hooglund, professor of politics at Bates College and editor of the scholarly journal, Middle East Critique. He will discuss the debated notion of the rural/urban divide in Iran in the context of the most recent elections. Kaveh Ehsani will also share with his take on this topic. Dr. Kaveh Ehsani is an Assistant Professor of International studies at DePaul University. He is also a member of the editorial committee of the Middle East Report Quarterly as well as the editor of an independent journal of social analysis in Iran called “the Dialogue.”
We also hear from Iman, a young activist who recently escaped from Iran will share his story with us. Iman had to flee to Dubai on June 15th – three days after the election – fearing imminent arrest by the Iranian regime. Yesterday I had the opportunity to talk to Iman on the phone.
Finally we will hear the reaction of two Tehran residents about the historic demonstration that took place two weeks ago.
Flashpoints – June 23, 2009 at 5:00pm
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Later in the program, we speak with Kaveh Ehsani, an Assistant Professor of International studies at Depaul University. He is also a member of the editorial committee of the Middle East Report Quarterly as well as the editor of an independent journal of social analysis in Iran called “the Dialogue.”
Flashpoints – June 22, 2009 at 5:00pm
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Since the 2005 election of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the burning economic issue in Iran has been the privatization of public assets and, more recently, the elimination of subsidies for a vast array of goods and services. Leading figures, including the Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, have called the privatization program “an economic revolution.” But it is not only the economy that private ownership is supposed to rescue. There seems to be a consensus across the political and ideological spectrum that public ownership of economic assets is the cause of a host of social and political ills, from authoritarianism to corruption and nepotism.
Though the debate seems new, the privatization of public assets has been a constant, albeit disputed strategy of consolidation for the Islamic Republic from the outset. Privatization of public assets has taken place in waves, always accompanied by a rational justification: The privatization of public land in the 1980s was carried out in the name of distributive justice, while the sale of city skyline and the liberalization of zoning laws in the 1990s were presented as the precondition for urban renewal. The current wave of privatization of industrial and financial institutions is framed as the technocratic rationalization of a hopelessly deadlocked economy. In fact, it is only the latest in a series of enclosures of the commons for the benefit of a select few who happen to have, for the moment, the upper hand in the political domain. Read more.
Protester interviewed in Spanish for Univision t.v. at a candlelight vigil for those who have died and suffered loss protesting the unfair elections in Iran (Un protestor habla contra los elecciones en Iran en Espanol).