The Lonely War: One Woman’s Account of the Struggle for Modern Iran

TUE, JAN 13, 2015 (48:38)

In the summer of 2009, as she was covering the popular uprisings in Tehran for the New York Times, Nazila Fathi received a phone call. “They have given your photo to snipers,” a government source warned her. Soon after, with undercover agents closing in, Fathi fled the country with her husband and two children, beginning a life of exile.

In The Lonely War, Fathi interweaves her story with that of the country she left behind, showing how Iran is locked in a battle between hardliners and reformers that dates back to the country’s 1979 revolution.

Drawing on over two decades of reporting and extensive interviews with both ordinary Iranians and high-level officials before and since her departure, Fathi describes Iran’s awakening alongside her own, revealing how moderates are steadily retaking the country.

+ BIO: Nazila Fathi

Nazila Fathi is a journalist, translator, and commentator on Iran who reported out of the country for nearly two decades until 2009, when threats from the Iranian government forced her into exile. From 2001 to 2009, Fathi was based in Tehran as the only full-time New York Times correspondent in Iran, writing over 2,000 articles; prior to that, she wrote for TIME magazine, and Agence France-Presses.

Her writing has also appeared in the New York Review of Books, Foreign Policy, and Nieman Reports. Fathi is the translator of Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Shirin Ebadi’s book History and Documentation of Human Rights in Iran, and has been interviewed on CNN, BBC, CBC, and NPR. She received her MA in political science from the University of Toronto in 2001 and is the recipient of numerous fellowships, including the Raoul Wallenberg Fellowship at Lund University, a Nieman Fellowship for journalism at Harvard University, a Shorenstein Fellowship at the Harvard Kennedy School, and she was an associate at the Harvard Belfer Center.

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