By Saud al-Zahid
By Saud al-Zahid
January 19, 2012 (Al Arabiya)
A famous Iranian actress who posed nude for a French magazine has been warned not to return home.
Golshifteh Farahani, who was born three years after the 1979 Islamic revolution in Iran, came into the spotlight at the tender age of 14 when she appeared in her first film, “Pear Tree.”
Farahani, who moved from Iran to Paris a year ago, co-starred with Leonard DiCaprio in the 2008 drama “Body of Lies.” She appeared in the news magazine Madame Le Figaro in protest against the ultra-conservative cultural policies she says are restricting her native country’s film industry. She later posted a bare-chested photo on her Facebook page.
“I do not support what she did nor reject it, because it was her personal choice, but I love her courage,” wrote one Iranian blogger named Alfred. “She did what the Egyptian blogger Alya Majda al-Mahdi did, and this is to protest against gender discrimination and the forced veil,” he wrote. The blogger was referring to a similar instance, when al-Mahdi took off her clothes to pose naked in protest against what she saw as unfair practices.
“After Alya al-Mahdi posed naked, it seemed that getting naked publicly had become the only means women had to protest against gender discrimination, as there are no other ways to express protest as such,” said Hamid al-Kanani, an expert on Iranian issues.
“The proliferation of such pictures of the Iranian actress is an indication of the failure of the Islamic republic’s policies when it comes to culture and religion, especially since she was born and raised during the religious era and entered schools heavy in religious teachings and lived in societies where men and women are separated even in public institutions,” said Kanani. “The way that the system has imposed hijab and the separation between men and women made Iranians feel repelled from religion.”
Another online Iranian commentator wrote that “human beings prefer to be looked at as humans and in a society where people don clothes, they do not look at those who do not wear clothes as human beings but as animals.”
He continued with his denunciation of the Golshifteh by saying that “I wish if she respected our values and civilization.”
In Iran, the semi-official Fars news agency said “publishing of photographs of the deplorable Golshifteh Farahani on the Internet shows the ugly face of cinemas behind the scenes.”