Black tie to celebrate Persian new year?

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Some 70 years ago, Reza Shah — the father of the last Shah of Iran — inspired by reforms of Kamal Ataturk in Turkey, decided to modernize and westernize Iran. Much of what he did was commendable, e.g. founding of universities. But one negative, superficial change was to ban islamic dress for women, and to force both men and women to wear western dress. The consequence is felt even today, in that middle class Iranians dress more western than westerners, and are rather embarrassed by traditional handmade attire such as the  “giveh” footware. (But if the giveh were to become the fashion in the west, they would be the first to wear them in trendy parties.)

I feel envious of coutries which have kept their national dress. In a formal gatherings, it is delightful to see Indians, Arabs, Japanese and others wear their national costumes with pride, and I yearn for a national dress of my own.

This year the Iran Heritage Foundation has a “Norouz Gala” to celebrate the Iranian new year (21 March). Apart from the £250 price tag for the tickets (guaranteed to keep out the paupers) I find the dress code of Black Tie quite off-putting.

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One comment on “Black tie to celebrate Persian new year?

  1. I am with 100% on this one….you won’t catch me in one of those ever.