Pardis Mahdavi

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Demonstrators hold pictures of Mahsa Amini and others killed in Iran during a protest outside the Iranian Consulate in Istanbul on Monday. (Sedat Suna/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock)

The “morality police” came for me exactly 13 minutes into my lecture on gender and sexual politics in post-revolutionary Iran. Four sets of auditorium doors swung open simultaneously. In they came, boots pounding, weapons clanking. The Tehran lecture hall erupted in confusion as the komiteh, as the morality police are known, filled the room.

Audience members ran every which way. I should have been shredding my lecture notes, running from the lectern into the nearby street. But the sight of a dozen bearded men in dark green uniforms rooted me to the floor. Two of the thugs climbed the steps to the stage; one raised his hand above my head, and then everything went black.…  Seguir leyendo »

Women ride a bus in Tehran on Dec. 20. The Iranian government announced new restrictions on contraceptives and abortions last month. (Abedin Taherkenareh/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock)

While the United States is focused on the question of abortion and the future of Roe v. Wade, another conversation on women’s reproductive rights is taking place across the globe in Iran. Last month, the Iranian government announced new laws further limiting abortions and restricting access to contraception. But, as in the United States, this is not the first time we have seen a government flexing its muscles by attempting to control women’s bodies.

My research on Iran’s sexual revolution helps explain the politics of sexual and reproductive rights in post-revolutionary Iran — and why these rights frequently come under attack.…  Seguir leyendo »