Projects Tabl MagazineSeason 3 • Issue 12 •Hero • The Figure of the Hero (B)

Table of Contents

  • Garshasb; Iranian Kārmān or Foreign Hērōs? - An Interview with Behrouz Avazpour
  • The Sweet Description of the Beauty and Perfection of the Lovers - Mehrak Ali Sabounchi
  • Youssef, the Fictional Hero of Simin - Marzieh Athari Nik-Azm
  • Demons Become Heroes - An Interview with Mohammad Tolouei
  • The Spiritual Role Model; the Hero of Shabih-khani - Ario Tehrani
  • The Repressed Matter and the Anti-hero Artistic Figure - Alireza Kikanli
  • The Sad Easterner, the Happy Westerner! - Amir Soghrati
  • National Heroes in Filmfarsi (Persian-film) - Pedram Partovi
  • The Awakeners: The Rise of the Wise Hero - Hamoon Qapchi


The twelfth issue of Tabl Magazine, published in May 2023, features seven articles and two interviews on various topics.

This issue starts with an interview conducted by Mehrak Ali Sabounchi with Behrouz Avazpour on mythology and culture. The interview is titled “Garshasb; Iranian Kārmān or Foreign Hērōs?”. The conversation begins with a discussion on what a hero is, followed by comparing the differences between heroes in Western culture and Iranian culture, namely hērōs and kārmān. The interview then delves into the history and characteristics of Garshasb in Zoroastrian and non-Zoroastrian texts. Avazpour analyzes Garshasb’s deeds and characteristics, and the interview concludes with a discussion on which heroic characteristics should be attributed to Garshasb.

The article titled “The Sweet Description of the Beauty and Perfection of the Lovers” is written by Mehrak Ali Sabounchi in Persian literature. In this article, the author first lists and reviews descriptions of the ideal appearance and beautiful faces found in ancient Iranian texts. The article then explores the qualities and characteristics that the composers of Persian romance poems attributed to their lover-heroes. Finally, it analyzes the character of Shirin, one of the most prominent lover-heroines of Persian literature, based on the ideal appearance and moral characteristics in Iranian thought.

The second article in the twelfth issue, written by Marzieh Athari Nik-Azm, deals with Persian fiction and is titled “Youssef, the Fictional Hero of Simin.” In this article, the author explains the word and the concept of the hero and then analyzes the novel Savushun by Simin Daneshvar as an example. Using narrative semiotics, the author examines the character of Youssef, the main hero of Daneshvar’s story, and presents her views on how he is an active participant in the story’s progression.

The twelfth issue features an interview by Mehrak Ali Sabounchi with Mohammad Tolouei, focusing on children’s literature and entitled “Demons Become Heroes.” During the conversation, Tolouei discusses how demons are portrayed in children’s and teenagers’ literature and how they can be transformed from harmful characters to heroes in a new narrative. Additionally, the author describes the process of ideation and formation of this review from his perspective.

Ario Tehrani wrote an article about dramatic culture and literature in the twelfth issue. The article is titled “The Spiritual Role Model; the Hero of Shabih-khani.” In this article, Mehrdad Bahar’s ideas about myth, epic, and history are explored to answer the question of what kind of hero the hero of shabih-khani is. The author analyzes the characteristics of the heroes of shabih-khani by examining the shared characteristics between Iranian myths and the heroes of ta’zieh. Additionally, the influence of epic literature on the characterization in the ta’zieh-namehs is discussed, along with the influence of “futuwwat” and “ayyari” (chivalry) rituals and the fundamental issues of Iranian thought in the creation of ta’zieh heroes.

In this piece, the author examines the anti-heroes of shabih-khani (Ashqiyā) based on psychoanalytical theories. By analyzing the actions of these characters in the process of shabih-khani stories, the article aims to shed light on the function and impact of this art and its anti-heroes on the psyche of the audience and popular culture.

The twelfth issue includes an essay by Amir Soghrati about visual arts. The article is titled “The Sad Easterner, the Happy Westerner!” and is divided into two parts, with the second part published in the thirteenth issue. In the first part, the author defines what a hero is and examines the representation of ancient heroes in contemporary Iranian art. The essay then discusses several works by different artists, exploring how they portray heroes in various political and social contexts throughout contemporary history.

The twelfth issue of the magazine has published the second part of Mohammad Sarvi Zargar’s translation of Pedram Partovi’s work titled “National Heroes in Filmfarsi (Persian-film).” The first part of this translation was published in the eleventh issue. In this article, the author examines the impact of economic and social conditions on the cinema of the Pahlavi era. The author also provides a summary of the plot of the famous Persian film “Ganj-e Qarun” and examines the hero or heroes of the movie and their characteristics.

Hamoon Qapchi authored the final article of the twelfth issue titled “The Awakeners: The Rise of the Wise Hero.” In this article, the author discusses the influence of social conditions on the emergence of a new genre of Iranian cinema and the shift in attitude towards female heroes. The article then delves into the impact of “Brick and Mirror,” a film by Ebrahim Golestan, as a representative example of this new wave of cinema. The author explores the influence of this film on the portrayal of women in cinema and its lasting impact, which continued until the late 1970s and declined soon after.