News ID: 267600
Published: 0358 GMT April 12, 2020

Persian language rising amidst int’l crises

Persian language rising amidst int’l crises
UN headquarters in New York

The recent developments and their consequences in cyberspace have caused a change in the Persian language’s stance in the international community, which can be used for strengthening it as a language of power and diplomacy.

Writing in Persian, aka Farsi, was mainly limited to congratulations and condolences of the general public, politicians, athletes and their fans and it did not have a strong role in the world’s political system.

Writing in Persian has never been a custom for Western and American officials. Though, US presidents have written a few words for giving congratulations on the occasion of Norouz (Persian New Year), IRNA wrote.

The use of the Persian language began in mid-autumn 2019 with the US President Donald Trump tweeting to threaten Iran, which was followed by many other US politicians’ Persian tweets.

After Lt. Gen. Qassem Soleimani, the hero of fighting terrorism in Iraq and Syria, was assassinated by the US in Baghdad, Trump started his Persian tweets again. The American president addressed the Iranian people and politicians. He published four Farsi tweets which were written in Farsi by non-natives.

Many US users used Google’s translation machine to interact with each other, and US officials, for or against Trump, helped to promote Farsi.

Maybe the Americans did so because it was the second language in which their president had tweeted. Trump has no tweets in languages other than English and Farsi.

Later, Trump threatened to strike 52 points that were important for the Iranian culture, which brought about more Farsi tweets by American celebrities and politicians. One actor wrote in Farsi that Iranian people and their culture are among the treasures of the world.

The first-ever Persian language spokesperson, Alan Eyre, in a tweet, used a funny Persian slang expression meaning, “Now anyone is using Persian in their tweets!”

Later on, the #Dear Iran hashtag became a trend in the US which was full of serious and jocular Persian tweets, in reaction to Trump’s threat to strike 52 points in Iran, and in fear of Iran’s retaliation. The main contents of the page were apologies to Iranians and a disavowal of Trump.

In the midst of Twitter quarrels between Western politicians, some other people showed their love for the Persian language that is the tongue of kindness and peace. A video of Afghan President Ashraf Ghani was published, in which he was reading Tarikh-e Beyhaqi (Beyhaqi’s History) which is a masterpiece of Persian prose.

In the coronavirus outbreak, Farsi has changed into the language of civilization, classical literature, language of solidarity and resistance, as well as humor.

Persian literature has been a center of attention in the past weeks, too. Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez read aloud the renowned Iranian Sa’di’s famous poem that is displayed at the UN headquarters.

The Persian language is one of the main pillars of Iranian culture and identity. It is the official language of Iran; therefore, it is not vulnerable in this age of communications and the global village.

According to the Encyclopedia of Persian Literature, by Hassan Anousheh, there are more than 150 million Persian speakers in more than 29 countries, including Iran, Tajikistan, Afghanistan, India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh. Persian is well-known among Iraqi Kurds as well. Less than 100 years ago, Persian was taught in the schools of Iraqi Kurdistan. Farsi speakers are also seen in China, Uzbekistan and Transoxiana.

It is said that from among the 10 big poets of the world, five are Farsi speakers, namely, Rumi, Ferdowsi, Hafez, Sa’di, and Khayyam.



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