Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Friday, March 20, 2009

Happy New Year, Persia

Today is the beginning of the Persian new year. (Tomorrow is another, but that's tomorrow.)

The U.S. President issued a 3-minute new year greeting to the Iranian people (and their leaders) today. The video (with optional Persian, probably Farsi subtitles) is available at the White House web site linked below.

A New Year, A New Beginning
President Obama released a special video message for all those celebrating Nowruz. Translated "New Day," Nowruz marks the arrival of spring and the beginning of the New Year for millions in Iran and other communities around the world. This year, the President wanted to send a special message to the people and government of Iran on Nowruz, acknowledging the strain in our relations over the last few decades. "But at this holiday we are reminded of the common humanity that binds us together," he says...

What You Need to Know -- a study guide for AP Comparative Government and Poliitcs

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At 11:57 AM, Blogger Ken Wedding said...

Tehran Puts Urban Spin On Rural Rite of Spring

"The final rush before the new year showed how Iran's increasingly urban culture is modifying rural traditions. With more than 70 percent of 68 million Iranians living in cities and the rest being closely connected to them, the way time and money is spent during Nowruz -- a time of family gatherings involving many preparations -- is changing...

"Nowruz is celebrated in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and many other countries. The ancient festival is rooted in Zoroastrianism, the world's first monotheistic religion, and was spread by the Persian empire. Even though some of Iran's current leaders have at times opposed the pre-Islamic festivities that mark the new year, the Nowruz celebrations are now embraced by the ruling Shiite clerics as an undeniable part of the country's national identity..."


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