In Honor of...
Part of 40 Performances, for the Hole, SOMArts Cultural Center, San Francisco, 2019
In Honor of is a project in remembrance of hundreds of men and women who have been taken as prisoners of conscience in Iran in the past years and are now in prison. They fought for the peaceful expression of their political, religious, sexual, cultural rights, beliefs, and identities. The Iranian government, however, has continued to deny them this voice and freedom.
Many waves of civil unrest in various parts of the country have concluded in arrests and prolonged imprisonments; strikes in Khuzestan province against violations and labor laws and back due to payments, many environmentalists were arrested fighting for the protection of vulnerable animal populations such as the cheetah, journalists
These women and men have broken their silence and fought on many fronts from workers' rights fighting for their unpaid wages to animal and environmental rights in endangered areas all over the country. and lawyers who became a voice of prisoners like Hengameh Shahidi and Nasrin Sotoudeh, people who talked about their different religions or beliefs such as Kasra Nouri (lawyer) and Azita Rafiezadeh (teacher). Women, in particular, have continued to protest against the mandatory hijab and the prohibition against the public congregation. While in prison, they have all had one common objective; to be heard for what they are fighting and resisting.
The Voices you hear are those of the children of one of Iran’s greatest modern tragedies. Children of men and women who were taken prisoner or executed for their political beliefs soon after the Islamic Revolution. Some of these children were born in prison; some have lost their fathers to mass executions; some lived with family and friends while their parents perished behind bars; some don't even know where the bodies of their fathers have been buried.
Now, thirty years later, here are the voices of these children as they recite poems and sign. They want their voices to be heard. They want us to know they are here.
Performance by Shaghayegh Cyrous
Collaborator Sahar Delijani