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Meeting Author Azar Nafisi

Several months ago I was asked to donate an artwork for an appreciation gift to Azar Nafisi, one of the visiting authors at The 2013 Festival of the Literary Arts in Winter Park, Florida.  Winter With the Writers | Rollins College  I love culture and literary adventures, so I agreed to give an art work.  I also read two of her books.

Azar Nafisi is an Iranian Academic and best selling author who emigrated to the USA from Iran in 1997.  “Reading Lolita in Tehran” journals how Azar boldly inspired her devoted students in her home.  Together she and her young friends secretly explored the forbidden western classic writings including: Austin, Bronte, James and Nabokov.

 “Things I have been Silent About” is Azar’s story of growing up in Iran against a background of Iran’s political Revolution.  Her mother had a term in Parliament. Her father, once the Mayor of Tehran, was jailed when the next regime took over.

“In one way or another we articulate what has happened to us through the kind of people we become.” ~ Azar Nafisi.

Her quote reminded me of my father’s quote: “What you are, you teach!” ~ Herman Betschen.

Both of our fathers told us stories while growing up and they were life time learners. Azar’s Father, while in jail, studied French and German,  read classic literature and history, wrote poetry and painted.

I felt connected to Azar Nafisi and posted a comment on her web site:Azar Nafisi, Offical Website of the Author of Reading Lolita in Tehran.  I wrote how I enjoyed her literary works and how we both appreciated our fathers. I did not mention that she would be receiving one of my art works.

Azar Nafisi

Intern Writers and Professors at Rollins College: Winter Park FL

On Thursday, February 28, 2013, I attended the afternoon session with the intern writers at Rollins College.  Azar Nafisi was a charming and witty mentor to the students. She was delighted with the framed giclee print “When the People Care.”  

It turns out that she had visited my web site after I wrote on her blog. “When the People Care,” was on my home page at that time and Azar told me how much she had admired that piece.  She gave me a warm hug and signed her books in Persian for me. The Evening Session at Tiedtke Concert Hall, was totally inspiring. Thanks to Randi Cruz, The Rollins Intern who arranged for the art donation, meeting Azar Nafisi was a memorable adventure.


7 replies on “Meeting Author Azar Nafisi”

I’d like to send you a letter officially thanking you for your donation of the piece of art to our closing reader, Azar Nafisi, during the 2013 Winter with the Writers Festival of the Literary Arts. Please let me have your land address, so I can mail you on WWW stationary. Thank you,
Carol Frost, Director WWW & Theodore Bruce and Barbara Lawrence Alfond Professor of English.

What a wonderful day we had – one treasured in my heart. Thank you for letting me in on your life endeavors. I admire you. Maybe we can do it again next year, but this time give the authors your rendition of the local manhole cover we took away with us that day. Again….you’re the greatest.

Once again you have touched someone through your art!!!! What a nice gesture to present your work to a prominent author who enjoyed it very much!!! You are thoughtful, Bobbi!
Azar Nafisi likes “When People Care” as I like it!!! It must have been a very interesting day!!! You are a wonder!!!!

Dear Bobbi Mastrangelo,
Thank you on behalf of Winter with the Writers, a Festival of the Literary Arts, the 2013 Class of WWW Interns and Rollins College for presenting Azar Nafisi with your piece “When the People Care.”
She wrote to tell me that she very much appreciated having the prints based on the original Linocut-Collage on hand made paper.
I hope you will be able to join us during the 2014 festival season and master classes.
Kind regards,
Carol Frost
Theodore Bruce and Barbara Lawrence Alfond
Professor of English
Director of Winter With the Writers
at Rollins College
Winter Park, Florida

Dear Bobbi,
Your Grate Works are stunning. I admire you and your work, and all you have accomplished.
Love to you and Al

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