Welcome to Free Word. Interested in exploring the political and cultural power of words? Join us at an upcoming event or read about the themes we explore.

Tehran Book Fair, Uncensored

Past Event
  • Friday 6 May 2016, 11:00 am - 5:30 pm and Saturday 7 May 2016, 11:00 am - 5:00 pm
  • Free Word Centre

For the first time, 7 independent Iranian publishers across Europe are uniting in London to present their works. This gathering is timed to coincide with the Tehran Book Fair in Iran; but, unlike its Iranian counterpart, this fair is free from censorship.

The books on display are examples of contemporary Iranian literature. There will be tables overflowing with uncensored novels, short stories, poetry, plays and non-fiction books about history, social science and art. This invaluable collection of books written by Iranian authors living inside and outside the country is coming together for two days at Free Word Centre. You’ll have the chance to get to know the publishers and authors, and to buy signed books penned by your favourite authors.

Participating publishers at the book fair will include:

The books and talks are mostly in Farsi, so if you speak Farsi or are studying Farsi, it’s the perfect place to spend 2 days amongst fellow bookworms.

If you don’t speak Farsi but are interested in finding out more about Persian literature and censorship in Iran and the Middle East, there are also some scheduled side events on Friday which may be of interest. They will be held by several organisations and publishers, and will include a data visualisation of Iran’s literary censorship and the book publishing process, talks about censorship across the Middle East, showcases of the work of active freedom fighters, book signings, and film clips of messages from Iranian authors and poets. Footage will also be broadcasted from this year’s Tehran International Book Fair in order to get a feel for what the bustling vibe there is like.

English-language event

Friday 6 May, 4:30 – 5:30pm

During this session, Small Media will present Writer’s Block, an online interactive data visualisation drawing on millions of rows of data from Iran’s national library database. The audience will be taken on a journey through censorship since the 1979 Iranian Revolution, demonstrating how the new regime has ruled on Persian literature over different time periods during the last 37 years.

This presentation will be followed by a talk from Index on Censorship about their coverage of censorship across the Middle East.

When booking a ticket please use the arrows to select which day you would like to book for. If you would like to book for both days, please add both to your basket.

Please note, your ticket only allows you entry to the fair. For talks, there is a capacity of 90 per talk and these places will be allocated on a first come first served basis on the day.

You may also like

Support our programme by donating today.