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S. Ahmadi

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A TASTE of IRAN

talks there are a familiar thread “stand in their shoes; develop empathy; waging war when we don’t understand; peace and war, etc.”

All Iranians are invited with all kinds of mind (opened, closed, semi-opened)
All non-Iranians interested to know Iran as it is in real are Invited.

Let’s take up the challenge and make a joint effort to learn more about Iran.

this topic is made as a part of the series of ""A TASTE" SERIES: to explore the countries and cultures of those in conflict!" by recommendation of Dear friend Wongmo R.

http://www.ted.com/conversations/3131/a_taste_series_to_explore_t.html


please ask your questions about Iran.
other Iranians please participate.

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    Jun 22 2011: I thought this conversation is about Iran???????

    Those who might know, please comment on the following questions I have:

    What are the typical jobs that Iranians do to make money?

    What is the cultural arts climate like? Do you have music, art, entertainment from around the world?

    How much social pressure (not official" - reality) Does the typical Iranian have on them to conform to political/ideological/Islamic views?

    On a scale of 1-10, what would you say is is the level of freedom of speech?

    Where do Iranians go on vacation?

    Do Iranian families have pets?

    How much of a multi-cultural environment does Iran have?

    Can women participate in/do everthing that men can or are there extra restrictions on them because they are women?

    Apart from politics/government, what countries/people do Iranians most admire? Least?
    • Jun 22 2011: Dear Jim Moonan,
      I reply according my knowledge and opinion:
      What are the typical jobs that Iranians do to make money?
      a large portion are governmental employee. the Oil has made government big and a large part of economy and Jobs is for government. also private businesses exist. nearly all kind of business exist. but some that have conflict with Islam are limited or banned. like music which is not completely banned but is limited to rules of Islam. specially about women singing and dancing.


      What is the cultural arts climate like? Do you have music, art, entertainment from around the world?
      officially arts and music and cinema are limited according to Islamic rules and international movies displaed in official media and TV are censored in some sexy parts. but in privet and home people use any kind they like by CD, DVD, satellite, Internet and so on.

      How much social pressure (not official" - reality) Does the typical Iranian have on them to conform to political/ideological/Islamic views?
      social (not official) pressure is only from extreme religious people but year by year it is becoming less and less because they are not so much supported by law and people prefer leave the pressure for government.
      religious people only when feel serious danger for revolution or Islam take actions like parade.

      On a scale of 1-10, what would you say is is the level of freedom of speech?
      depends on subject. if not oppose of Islam and revolution 10. if yes depends its is really for knowledge (10) or is for destroying Islam or revolution in face or speech. (0)

      Where do Iranians go on vacation?
      many places like Shomal (coast of Caspian sea) or many other nice places
    • Jun 22 2011: Do Iranian families have pets?
      in rural mostly have hen and so no. but in cities mostly no. only few have. having dog inside home which human and dog breath same air is prohibited in Islam, but not for guarding out of home. only few people mostly who have western interests have dog and cat in cities.

      How much of a multi-cultural environment does Iran have?
      because at least near 95% of Iranians are Muslims culture has mostly Islamic background. but different ethnic and different regional have different cultures.
      year by year according to more and more influence of western culture by Hollywood movies and media by CD DVD satellite and Internet people specially young's are absorbing western culture. and Islamic and western culture are side by side.

      Can women participate in/do everything that men can or are there extra restrictions on them because they are women?
      women should wear Hijab in public official places. although many of women do not wear Hijab completely as Islamic rules. in Islam the hair of woman should not bee seen by stranger man. but in streets hair of many women can be seen.
      about Job there is few restrictions according to Islam. for example women can not be Judge in Islam. but driving management and near all jobs is allowed for women. although in Islam if a woman want to work out of home should have the permit of husband. and husbands usually permit. although Islam encourages 9not rule) women to stay home and try for training of child's. but many of women are have jobs in different areas.

      Apart from politics/government, what countries/people do Iranians most admire? Least
      US, Canada, Europe.
      Iranians Muslims have no problem with people of countries specially Christians but have problem with policies and government specially support of Israel.
      and if Iranian Muslims curse western countries they mean policies and government (because of supporting Israel) not the people.
    • Jun 22 2011: in some places woman should be separated from mans like sport stadiums, schools. in universities girls and boys not separated.

      also as touching body of opposite gender is banned some Jobs are separated. for example a woman doctor can only touch woman patient.

      usually women have lower wage than mans because of need for money.

      usually women have lower education.

      in Iran rules and in Islam husband should cover living costs of his wife and woman has no duty to work and have income for family. and the income duty is by man.
      but many women prefer to work voluntary to help economy of family.
      in more religious families working of women out of home is lower and usually women stay at home or work at home.

      if a woman have any income or money or property it is for herself and is not for husband but in Islam rules (Iran laws are based on Islam) women should spent by consult and permit of husband.
      woman has financial independent and all her properties is for herself even after divorce and husband can not get money from woman by law. but if a woman work out of home prefer to help in costs to her husband but it is not duty of woman.
      in case of divorce the property of woman and man are for themselves and is not distributed but man should pay the dowry (a usually high price determined by woman at marriage like a guarantee for example a home) to woman and if not woman can sue husband and send him to prison. and also woman can ask wage for working in home of husband for training children and making food or even for milk to child and they are rights of woman.
      in case of inheritance the portion of woman and man is not equal and man gets more (double) because all the cost of home is by man and woman has no duty in costs of home and family.

      at marriage woman can set terms and limit the rights of husband.

      love and family have high value in Iran families and rare mans have more than one wife because of heavy legal and Islamic duties and costs for having wife.
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        Jun 23 2011: "women should wear Hijab in public official places...about Job there is few restrictions according to Islam. for example women can not be Judge in Islam...in Islam if a woman want to work out of home should have the permit of husband. "

        How many wives are men allowed? What is the minimum age for marriage in Iran? Aside from judges what other jobs are not allowed? Waitresses? Can they be Bank Managers? Members of the Government? The President? Can a Christian or non-Muslim be a judge?

        "also as touching body of opposite gender is banned some Jobs are separated. for example a woman doctor can only touch woman patient."

        What about man doctor touching woman patient?

        "usually women have lower wage than mans because of need for money." What do you mean by "need for money"?

        "usually women have lower education."

        But for the same education as the man or more, why does the woman get less wage?
        • sha b

          • +1
          Jun 23 2011: "usually women have lower education."

          "According to UNESCO world survey, Iran has the highest female to male ratio at primary level of enrollment in the world among sovereign nations, with a girl to boy ratio of 1.22 : 1.00." (source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Education_in_Iran#Women_in_education),

          We have an entrance exam for universities, after it turned out girls are always coming on top, and the result would be more female university graduates, they changed the conditions of entering universities and put retractions for girls, it means a girl has to get a higher score to be in the same place(university/major) as a boy.

          And even if that isn't enough, they also limited the (university-major)s who accepts girls.
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        Jun 23 2011: "having dog inside home which human and dog breath same air is prohibited in Islam"

        It seems that equality of women with men, though the men be inferior in education, is also prohibited in Islam.
    • sha b

      • +2
      Jun 22 2011: It *is* about Iran, Were you paying any attention at all?

      "typical jobs": that's a very general question, In any case I'd say only a minority are actually producing something, Most are a part of a chain that just buy someone's product and sell it to another.

      "cultural arts climate " : We are "illegally" connected to art,music and cinema of the other countries(and sometimes or own country, cause a part of what is produced here is illegal too)-Iran's state TV might even show American movies too sometimes, But they are censored very vigorously, In some cases even the main story changes, I remember in the version of "The Fall of the Roman Empire" that I saw on TV, There was no Sophia Loren .

      "How much social pressure (not official" - reality) Does the typical Iranian have on them to conform to political/ideological/Islamic views?":
      That's what we all were talking about for the past week(s?). Start reading from the beginning of this thread. It's an official pressure, As someone who clashes with that pressure routinely I say very damn real indeed. To be honest I didn't get what are you asking...(not official" - reality)!? You mean do they say "We are putting pressure on you now"? (Ironically, sometimes they do that too- Like each year a few days before Summer, They warn people with "bad hijab" about what would happen to them:
      http://www.a%yandenews.com/news/31194/ I intentionally put a % in the link, clear it in your address bar)


      "On a scale of 1-10, what would you say is is the level of freedom of speech? "
      1 /And that's because I am (semi)free on the internet.

      Where do Iranians go on vacation? You mean out of country? Most rich people go to Dubai. others go to vacation too, to other cities, depending on the season and the occasion: This ones get more crowded during holidays :Northern Iran(Mazandaran & Gilan), Mashhad, Isfahan, Shiraz, Kish, Ahwaz or any other place actually)
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        Jun 22 2011: SR and Sha -- Thanks very much for your thoughtful responses.... Sha, you are right - I went back earlier in the conversation and found much to read and see about the country and people of Iran, so thank you for that.

        The recent conversation seemed to have gotten derailed into Islamic and Muslem back and forth and I think that almost always ends up with polarized opinions taking over...

        Sorry you feel that way about Americans. I hope it is not based on Hollywood and movies and TV. My feeling is that every culture has it's pluses and minuses. I think respect and tolerance and education and freedom of speech and the pursuit of happiness on earth are important to me. What would you say are important ideals to you?

        What do you consider to be extremist views in terms of politics and religion?
        I'm sure you've heard the phrase, "one person's terrorist is another person's freedom fighter". When societies have cultural and religious and political conflicts, what do you think are the right ways to overcome or at least control that conflict so that the people don't become hateful of other people?
        • sha b

          • +1
          Jun 22 2011: That wasn't about Muslim vs non-Muslims, it was about Iran's government and what they do to Bahai's and why.

          And on Americans, Never had met any Americans actually, only on the internet, Why be sorry? I can like individuals, It's the " American culture" that I can't understand, What is generally considered favorable in a person in American culture. What is valued more by general American standards.


          "one person's terrorist is another person's freedom fighter"
          I guess we are talking about two different things, You are talking about Iran vs America, we are talking about what goes on"inside" Iran. Only inside Iran. terrorists/freedom fighters and ect sound so Afghanistan/America to me.

          Well I don't know about "societies" and theories on countries in conflict. Here, Our concern is that people of different believes should be allowed(by the government) to be alive.
    • sha b

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      Jun 22 2011: "Do Iranian families have pets?" Yes, recently it became illegal to take one's pet out of the house thought.

      "How much of a multi-cultural environment does Iran have?"
      multi-culturism is noticeable in our different ethnic groups, I guess it's only noticeable to ourselves. In any case we aren't unified by any standard. A very mixed culture. Thought there are things that we all share.


      "Can women participate in/do everthing that men can or are there extra restrictions on them because they are women?"
      Well, To name a few: I can't ride a bicycle or play volleyball outside when there are morality polices around. Also the number of women who can be accepted in some majors in universities are limited and in some majors no woman is allowed to be admitted.
      The thing is in this area I rarely have a problem with people or society, the restrictions mostly come from the authorities and "their" pressure to keep women at home.

      "Apart from politics/government, what countries/people do Iranians most admire? Least? "

      Well, So far, It seems to me you think we are unified. Not really. I speak for myself I feel kind of more connected to native Americans ,Irish people, the continent of Africa, Greece, Spain and Latins. The least?... Americans are not my cup of tee.
      • Jun 23 2011: Dear sha b,
        "Also the number of women who can be accepted in some majors in universities are limited "
        can you show evidence? as I now it was only a suggestion to parliament. but not accepted by parliament. perhaps I am wrong. can you show evidence?
        as I know the girls are near 60% of university students. year by year girls are occupying universities more and more and boys are having smaller portion year by year.
        university in Iran is free (also paid exist. but most universities and famous universities are governmental and free) and so young have great Entrance competition to enter university specially girls with no husband for attracting rich mans for marriage by having free higher education certificate.
        I think you are influenced from propaganda against Iran about women rights.

        "and in some majors no woman is allowed to be admitted."
        which university you mean?
        I know only Alzahra university that it for girls and has boy students but mostly girls.
        or Imam Sadiq university has both boy and girl but separated.
        as I know all universities has boy and girl. please let me know for my information.

        ""their" pressure to keep women at home."
        in Iran women are free to work out of home and ONLY it is recommended to woman stay at home and it depends to the husband and woman is free choose which kind of husband and also can set terms in legal marriage contract.
        do which pressure you mean for staying at home?
        please show evidence for pressure.
        • sha b

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          Jun 23 2011: "can you show evidence?"

          How long has it been since you have seen seen any(BS, MS, PHD, any university) entrance exam's catalog(دفترچه کنکور)

          Check out this years or the past years or the year before that,
          The one I have recently came upon is this year, for "Science and Industry university":

          توسعه اقتصادي و برنامه ريزي (12 مرد)

          مديريت تكنولوژي (12 مرد)

          مديريت اجرايي (15 مرد)

          شيمي – شيمي فيزيك (9 مرد + 1 مرد شبانه)

          شيمي – شيمي آلي (11 مرد)

          شيمي – شيمي معدني (12 مرد)

          شيمي - شيمي تجزيه (9 مرد)

          فيزيك گرایش اتمی مولکولی (13 مرد)

          فيزيك گرایش حالت جامد (14 مرد)

          فوتونيك (8 مرد)

          آمار رياضي (8 مرد)

          رياضي محض گرایش آنالیز (8 مرد)

          رياضي محض گرایش جبر (5 مرد)

          رياضي محض گرایش هندسه (3 مرد)

          رياضي كاربردي گرایش آنالیز عددی (18 مرد)

          رياضي كاربردي گرایش تحقیق در عملیات (3 مرد)

          مهندسي برق – الكترونيك (30 مرد + 1 مرد شبانه(

          مهندسي برق – قدرت گرايش حفاظت شبكه (6 مرد(

          مهندسي برق – قدرت گرايش سیستم های قدرت (9 مرد + 5 مرد شبانه)

          مهندسي برق– قدرت ماشین های الکتریکی (15 مرد + 2 مرد شبانه)

          مهندسي برق – مخابرات گرایش سیستم (12 مرد)

          مهندسي برق – مخابرات گرایش میدان (19 مرد + 1 مرد شبانه)

          مهندسي فناوري اطلاعات گرایش مخابرات امن (10 مرد)

          مهندسي برق – كنترل کنترل و علائم (10 مرد)

          مهندسي برق – كنترل (18 مرد)

          راه آهن برقي (6 مرد)

          مهندسي پزشكي – بيوالكتريك (12 مرد)

          مهندسي شيمي گرايش ترموديناميك و سينتيك (15 مرد)

          مهندسي شيمي گرايش طراحي فرآيندهاي جداسازی (6 مرد + 2 مرد شبانه)

          مهندسي شيمي گرايش طراحي، شبيه سازي و كنترل فرآيندها (12 مرد + 3 مرد شبانه)

          مهندسي صنايع – صنايع (17 مرد)

          مهندسي حمل و نقل ريلي (2 مرد)

          مهندسي صنايع - مديريت سيستم و بهره وري (14 مرد)

          مهندسي سيستم هاي اقتصادي اجتماعي (17 مرد)

          مهندسي حمل و نقل ريلي (2 مرد)

          مهندسي عمران – سازه (17 مرد)

          مهندسي عمران - مهندسي زلزله (21 مرد)

          مهندسي عمران - مكانيك خاك و پي (18 مرد)

          مهندسي عمران – راه و ترابري (15 مرد + 4 مرد شبانه)

          مهندسي عمران – مهندسي آب (8 مرد)

          ‌مهندسي عمران – سازه هاي هيدروليكي (8 مرد)

          مهندسي عمران – سازه هاي دريايي (8 مرد)

          مهندسي عمران - برنامه ريزي حمل و نقل (19 مرد)
        • sha b

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          Jun 23 2011: This is from this years MS exam catalog and the numbers show the gender who can be accepted in that major.


          "I know the girls are near 60% of university students."
          *If* it was fair, and equal opportunity was provided, Back then more girls get higher scores than boys, and that's why girls used to be ahead, Now the rules have changed to prevent that from happening, as I said before girls have to get a higher score for the same position as boys now.

          "Which major?" Engineering and technical ones. Look at the number of sits that are reserved for one specific gender in any university's entrance exam, Are you kidding me?
          Are you actually saying you haven't noticed that before?

          "please show evidence for pressure."

          Next time Petroleum, and Oil or Steel or any other big governmental company has announced that they are hiring, see the gender section.
          Or when you are filling another entrance exam, take a look at the number of girls who can be admitted.
          Or next time Ahmadinejhad is talking about the woman who used to drive a bus listen to it.
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          Jun 23 2011: Sha B! You are my new hero. I love your spirit and your intellect. Women are amazing when they are given half a chance. I hope all the good things in the world for you. Please keep teaching us. We need you and so does Iran whether they know it or not!
        • sha b

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          Jun 24 2011: @Debra: Thank you,
          It's a...some kind of shared spirit among many Iranians(-in before SR says it's just a few Iranians who have been watching BBC).

          To be honest, I don't enjoy being the only one from that "shared spirit" here. Maybe it's immature of me.
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        Jun 23 2011: Sha B, I am with Debra in that what you are doing, sharing your perspective about your country as at times it is not quite the same as S. R.'s. We all know that there are always two sides to a story at least, and different people have different experience and observations, so I am glad that you posted in order to let us see what is going on from a female's viepoint.

        And going with that...I looked at your profile and noticed that you played volleyball. May I ask is it through a league or?? If you explained it and I missed it sorry. What other sports are females allowed to play. And on that same vein, may I ask about how Iranian women view working out and getting "toned" and such?? I am curious about this.

        Thank you!!!!
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          Jun 24 2011: Good question!
          That reminds me of something, LInda. I read that one of the major predictors of a woman's success in business and thus financially is whether or not she played sports as a child and teenager. Maybe it is true when you see the guts that Sha B demonstrates here!

          ***Let's just make sure we do not ask her any questions that would make it easy for someone who wanted to harm her could find her.
        • sha b

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          Jun 24 2011: Hi Linda,
          Yes, off course we have leagues, And not only volleyball, all sports have leagues for women too.
          We play inside a gym: players, referee, staff, viewers(:not much viewers, mostly other teams and their staff, player's family members ) and anyone who is in is female.

          "how Iranian women view working out and getting "toned" and such"
          Most women don't have time for it. And some just don't feel the need to.
          I am guessing maybe there are some that keep themselves out of sports in fear of becoming indelicate and un-fragile.
        • sha b

          • 0
          Jun 24 2011: Wished there was a non-public or personal sign or something somewhere. Like /This message isn't contributing anything to a" taste of Iran" :

          so @ Debra,
          @ anyone else: don't read if you don't want to:

          Debra:) That was the mother in you. Thank you.

          Speaking as an anonymous and guts? Not to be confused by me acting humbly but I have seen people with real guts.
      • Jun 24 2011: "How long has it been since you have seen seen any(BS, MS, PHD, any university) entrance exam's catalog(دفترچه کنکور)

        Check out this years or the past years or the year before that, "
        the real stat of entrance shows girls are more than boys. usually girls are 50-60%
        and as I know there is no rule about limiting girls for entering university.

        "entrance exam's catalog(دفترچه کنکور) "
        what you copied here is only a small part of hundreds of pages. in this page you are right.
        but the fact is that usually girls are accepted more than boys in exam of entering university in Iran.

        "*If* it was fair, and equal opportunity was provided, Back then more girls get higher scores than boys,"
        so do you accepts girls are more than boys in universities?
        also opportunity is already fair.
        what you said was only a suggestion to parliament which was not accepted.
        real stat shows girls are more. we are not in dream. real stat is important.
        also please not out of women rights if girls have much higher entrance there will be some social problems in future. all things should not be taken for women rights.
        who want to make propaganda relate everything to women right.
        I heard women want to make parade to protest against why the word businessman is not businesswoman.
        the real fact is that some are enemy of Islam use anything to destroy Islam even making propaganda about not real human rights.

        "Which major?" Engineering and technical ones.
        can you show evidence? I not sure abut that. but in Tehran university and polytechnic and some other that I know girls are same as boys in Engineering and technical. but usually girls themselves does not select such because their prefers and scores not limitations.

        "Look at the number of sits that are reserved for one specific gender in any university's entrance exam, Are you kidding me?"
        I know the fact that stat of girls is more. total is important. not one page.
        Are you actually saying you haven't noticed that before?
        • sha b

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          Jun 24 2011: @Hello SR,
          Call me weak or whatever you want. But I didn't even read thorough your message this time.
          This thread has become like my email inbox, I have to check it every day, Already 300and something comments and I don't see it stopping from increasing so fast in any near feature.
          Wait for Naim or anyone else to take you from here. I am out.
          Have a good life.(you'll be in for a lot of surprises, I'll tell you that much)
      • Jun 24 2011: "Next time Petroleum, and Oil or Steel or any other big governmental company has announced that they are hiring, see the gender section."
        this is evidence?
        in all of companies you said both woman and man are working. please refer to real stat. not your Imaginations and what you heard.
        yes some places need only man. but please refer to total stat.

        "Or when you are filling another entrance exam, take a look at the number of girls who can be admitted."
        do you disagree totally girls enter universities more than boys?
        I do not see any evidence from you.
        one page of catalog is not evidence.

        "Or next time Ahmadinejhad is talking about the woman who used to drive a bus listen to it."
        woman are free to drive bus. I see many of them in Tehran.
        please refer to valid stat and facts. you are showing only your personal beliefs perhaps influenced from propaganda against Iran.
        woman have good rights in Iran. in some cases even more than west. specially about their rights in marriage.
        does western woman have financial independent against their husband?

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