Sal e now mubarak! Happy New year!
Today marks the start of the year 1395 in Afghanistan. What was originally a Zoroastrian festival is now marked by Prophet Muhammad’s migration from Mecca to Medina in 622 C.E.. In addition to Afghanistan, Nowroze is also celebrated in Iran, Tajikistan, Kurdistan, the Indian Sub Continent and many other countries in the world. For a quick crash course on Nowroze, click here. Also, Nowroze is not complete without the New Year seven fruit compote, haft mewa, which was the highlight of my family’s Nowroze holiday celebration. Here is my favorite haft mewa recipe.
This year I hope to take you on a journey of entertainment in all that Afghan culture has inspired and continues to inspire in the arts.
People ask me about Afghanistan related books and films all the time, so I would like to create a handy list that you can find yourself referencing back not just for a great resource but also discovering some wonderful ways to delve into Afghan culture as unveiled as possible.
A few years ago, I had the privilege of interviewing the author of the bestseller The Kite Runner, Khaled Hosseini which inspired this list. See the interview below:
While The Kite Runner and Khaled’s three other books may be familiar to many, there are still so many more books and films that explore much of Afghanistan, its culture, traditions, and values.
Here is a taste of what is to come...
I couldn’t put down Anand Gopal's book, No Good Men Among the Living: American, the Taliban and the War Though Afghan Eyes. I was really taken by the three Afghans he had featured in this book and how each of their life stories were a by-product of Afghanistan's recent history.
The Patience Stone by Atiq Rahimi is not only a novel which won the most prestigious literary award in France, Prix Goncourt but it is a heart-wrenching film written and directed by the author.
Just when I thought I knew all about Afghanistan related books, I discovered The Secret Sky by Afghan American journalist Atia Nawabi which is going on my read list.
It goes to show you, one can never know too much or enough about a subject. So for this Nowroze, you’re invited to share in what you love about Afghanistan and so much more. If you want me to explore some of your favorite books or movies, please share them in the comments section of this blog.
Stay tuned as I curate the list to share with you shortly.