‘Writing for’ with Authority: Theorizing an Electronic Edition of Shahriar Mandanipour’s Censoring an Iranian Love Story

  • David Thomas Henry Wright Murdoch University


Censoring an Iranian Love Story (CAILS) by Shahriar Mandanipour (2009) is a novel written for translation. Despite being penned in Farsi, this original text has yet to be published. CAILS simultaneously presents the initial titular love story (bold), pre-emptively censored text before it is ‘submitted’ to the Iranian Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance (bold with strikethrough), and explanations as to why censoring occurred (roman). Mandanipour’s voice has the authority that comes with writing in a mother tongue, yet in writing for translation he disavows authorial privilege. A non-hierarchical electronic text that enables the reader to shift between the ‘original’, censored, and ‘annotated’ text, as well as these options within the original Farsi, could restore authority to the writer. By theorising such an edition, I explore the possibility of a novelistic form that would enable and empower non-English writers to cross linguistic, social, cultural, political, religious, and censorship boundaries.


authority in fiction, electronic literature, literary theory, palimpsest, Shahriar Mandanipour, translation

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Author Biography

David Thomas Henry Wright, Murdoch University

David Thomas Henry Wright was shortlisted for the Queensland Literary Awards' inaugural QUT Digital Literature Prize, City of Fremantle's T.A.G. Hungerford Award, Viva La Novella Award, and Overland Short Story Prize. He has been published in Southerly, Seizure, and Verity La, and edited a special issue of Westerly. He has a Masters from The University of Edinburgh and lectured at China's top university, Tsinghua, where he developed the school's course in Australian Literature. He is an Electronic Literature Organisation member and presented at the ELO 2017 Conference in Porto, Portugal. He is currently a PhD candidate at Murdoch University. 


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How to Cite
WRIGHT, David Thomas Henry. ‘Writing for’ with Authority: Theorizing an Electronic Edition of Shahriar Mandanipour’s Censoring an Iranian Love Story. MATLIT: Materialities of Literature, [S.l.], v. 6, n. 3, p. 83-92, aug. 2018. ISSN 2182-8830. Available at: <https://impactum-journals.uc.pt/matlit/article/view/5265>. Date accessed: 18 sep. 2019.
Secção Temática | Thematic Section