Tuesday, March 06, 2012
In Telos, Mohammad Rafi on Iran's historical affinity for Germany.
Iran's most prominent Heideggerian philosopher Ahmad Fardid coined the term Gharbzadegi after he read Heidegger's existential philosophy and adapted Heidegger's concept of the authentic. Gharbzadegi or being struck-by-the-West was widely discussed within Iranian intellectual circles that formed against the despotic Shah. Al-e-Ahmad popularized this term with his treatise that outlined a disease, that is to say, Gharbzadegi that also gets translated as "Westoxification." Al-e-Ahmad's thesis reads "we've [Iranians] not been able to retain our own cultural/historical personality during our encounter with machines and in the face of their inevitable assault." Weststruckness ignited a crucial debate on modernism and Iran's national identity and is generally regarded as the initiation of an intellectual movement that opposed monarchic Iran and its Western influences.
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