The Keys to Paradise: On Children, Martyrdom, and War
An Iranian American’s reflections on Flight 752....
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Amir Soltani is an Iranian-American writer, filmmaker, and human rights activist. His graphic novel on protest and dissent in Iran, Zahra’s Paradise, co-created with Khalil Bendib, was nominated for two Eisner Awards. The story of a mother and blogger’s search for Mehdi, a student who has vanished in the aftermath of Iran’s 2009 presidential elections, Zahra’s Paradise made publishing history as a real-time online graphic novel translated into 16 languages. It was featured in a seminal article on the “Graphic Novel Renaissance” by Newsweek and covered by dozens of news outlets including The Economist, The New York Times, Der Spiegel, BBC, Jakarta Times, and others. Albeit a fictional character, Zahra ran on a human rights platform in Iran’s 2013 presidential elections. Amir is the producer and co-director of Dogtown Redemption, a documentary film on class, race, and space chronicling the life of recyclers in West Oakland, California. Dogtown Redemption was executive produced by Jamie Wolf, Geralyn Dreyfous, Regina Scully, Abou Farman, Khosrow Semnani and Steve Nasiri. It was broadcast on PBS and nominated for an Emmy. Amir studied social and intellectual history at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts and Harvard. He has a mutt named Louie.