Yaghmaian, Behzad.  Social change in Iran: an eyewitness account of dissent, defiance, and new movements for rights.  State University of New York, 2002. 269p bibl index afp  ISBN 0-7914-5211-5, $62.50; ISBN 0-7914-5212-3 pbk, $20.95 . Reviewed in 2002sep CHOICE.


What has happened in Iran since the election of Mohammad Khatami as the president of the Islamic Republic in 1997? This book discusses the events, personalities, groups, and forces involved in the struggle to rid the Islamic Republic of Iran of its repressive measures and transform it into a more open, modern, and democratic society. Yaghmaian (economics, Ramapo College) believes that the clerical forces that took power after the overthrow of the Pahlavis have exhausted their course, and new movements are emerging in Iranian society to replace them. In ten chapters, he provides eyewitness accounts of dissent and defiance of Iranian citizens of different classes, ages, occupations, and genders. He writes about the struggle between the reformist and conservative ruling factions and how youth, university students, women, and workers are determined to confront the ideology and policies of "the bearded men in slippers." Yaghmaian is at his best when discussing economic changes in the Islamic Republic. His passionate description of various student political activities, while informative, at times seems repetitive. This is a good source for learning about recent developments in the Islamic Republic of Iran. All levels and collections.  -- A. Mahdi, Ohio Wesleyan University