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The Iranian Revolution Through A Child's Eyes

Pete Springer/OPB

In many ways, Aria Minu-Sepehr had a what sounds like a typical American childhood. He went to an American school. He watched Sesame Street and Little House on the Prairie. He made Popsicle skeletons for Halloween and went water-skiing.

But Minu-Sepehr was far from the U.S.: he grew up in Iran in the 1970s.

His father was a major general in the Iranian Air Force, a position that carried a high level of prestige. So as a child, Minu-Sepehr basked in what he acknowledges was a kind of privileged bubble — a  wealthy, somewhat secular, Western-focused world. The Iranian Revolution in 1979 burst that bubble. The Shah was overthrown, Ayatollah Khomeini took control, and the old military and ruling classes were rooted out. 

Minu-Sepehr’s family escaped. He lives in in Corvallis now, and writes about his family’s story in his new memoir We Heard the Heavens Then.

What questions do you have about life in Iran before and during the revolution? Or for an Iranian-American in this time of nuclear saber-rattling and talk of war?

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OPB | Broadcast: April 19, 2012