Read Dr. Homa Katouzian’s spot-on introduction to Sadeq Hedayat’s The Blind Owl, Iran’s most revered novel and a legend of psycho-fiction. ‘There are sores which slowly erode the mind in solitude like a kind of canker.’ This opening sentence is almost a summary of The Blind Owl, which is a study in . A review, and links to other information about and reviews of The Blind Owl by Sadegh Hedayat.

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That was my first phase. Having possession of it finally made it less desirable; knowing at any moment I could go there made it less illicit. It was a seductive book even before I understood it. What he concluded our exchange with interested me most, a sentiment absent from his seminal book: Several brushes with bad luck had collided to create a most calcified dolor, so potent that nothing scared me, not depression, not death, nothing.

Vahshi Bafqi — ‘Orfi Shirazi. The book was well received in the French literary circles. There is the perpetual haze of opium which, based on whatever account you subscribe to, Hedayat was an occasional dabbler or a hopeless addict. The long form, it has always seemed to me, has the power to really shelter you, keep you covered and protected for several years, and so in that era, for the first time in my life, I experienced no fear. It has been known to make its readers suicidal, hence the banning in Iran.

The Blind Owl

Menu Skip to content. December External links: It is, first of all, a novel that demands countless readings; it demands that you become a student of it.

Hedayat seems to try it all and, on its own terms, most of it meets with success. My thoughts acquired the subtlety and grandeur which only opium can confer and I sank into a condition between sleep and coma. Hedayat was in many ways partially French: My one fear is that tomorrow I may die without having come to know myself.


We have several old men: Hedayat could not find solace in Tehran society and yet in Paris he could not find peace either. I have no doubt that melancholy ingrained in his character led to his suicide, but I also believe that there is an exuberance in his writing that counteracts it. And then the part of me that believed I would get over this wanted everyone to know about this breathtaking novel that had, over many personal peaks and valleys, grown to mean the world to me.

The Blind Owl – Sadegh Hedayat

Hedayt are commenting using your Facebook account. Novelistic prose did not really exist in Persian before the twentieth century, and whereas the early Iranian novels were historical novels written by academics and intellectuals, this was something altogether different from even its different status as a novel. Mahmud Saba Kashani — OMG — labyrinth indeed.

If you do read an essay now, what might it tell you? His fevered mind returns repeatedly to the same ideas and images, and to the limited compass of his life: If at times we come to a halt, we do so to hear the call of death I never told anyone I had read it.

The Blind Owl – Sadegh Hedayat (translated by Naveed Noori) | Messenger’s Booker (and more)

In front of my door I saw an old and dilapidated hearse that had hitched to it two black horses, emaciated like cadavers. Porochista Khakpour was born in Tehran and raised in Los Angeles.

Tellingly, the narrator is not even sure who his father is — his father or his uncle — and, similarly, his wife a woman who is his foster-sister, and whom he winds up marrying in large part because of her resemblance to his aunt though he is, in fact “forced to marry her” sleeps with many other men but not him, preventing any family and next generation from properly developing: While narrated in the first person, there is no unified account here.


I went toward the house.

The Blind Owl was written during the oppressive latter years of Reza Shah ‘s rule — The complete review ‘s Review:. I never took it with me to college, never took it anywhere. As to the conventional alternative: For other uses, see Blind Owl disambiguation.

At one time, Persian was a common cultural language of much of the non-Arabic Islamic world. It was the most disturbing thing I had read and I had read many disturbing things by then; I was deeply attracted to them, in fact.

Many of Hedayat’s hedaayat stories have also been translated into Urdu, mostly by Bazl-e-Haq Mahmood, who published one volume of his short stories as Sag-e-Awara Sag-e Velgard. The narrator seeks escape: The expression of melancholy is not the same thing as melancholy.

He was not a writer, of course, but he made one out of me. It is believed that much of the bedayat had already been completed by while Hedayat was still a student in Paris.