As advertised, our stories come from all over the world. Although most are from the West due mainly to this being an English language site, we are often given sensitive, intelligent glimpses into the mores of various cultures. Still, when you get to it and remove all the traditions, we are all human and hurt much the same.
Mariam Saidan‘s They Always Welcomed Visitor tells of a situation that everyone can relate to at least on the intellectual level. A situation that feels the same to the individual everywhere but one that varies from culture to culture in the social view.
The Q and A
Q: Mina is a first rate character. Please explain the choices that went into her creation?
– Mina is a mixture of numerous people that I knew growing up in Iran. I wanted to reflect the experiences of women in the Islamic Republic but also to represent the feeling of escape that everyone has at some point in their life.
Q: It has taken countless centuries for women everywhere to break free from having the same rights as property–essentially none. Do you foresee a time when such isn’t defined as “progressive” thinking but is a natural matter of course–or is such so deeply women into the social fabric that it will never be wholly eradicated?
– With things that are happening in Iran at the moment, with women leading a revolution and getting the support of men, I’d like to be optimistic about a sea-change to women’s rights. I believe that this revolution will be successful, but even if it is, we still have a long way to go before women are treated as wholly equal throughout the world. Hope for this future is essential.