Islamic public of Iran

People heading to the mosque for the evening prayer

In 1978 and 1979, Iran was the scene of a bloody revolution. The protesters overturned the decadent monarchy of the Shah and Iran became “The Islamic Republic of Iran”. Thirty years onwards, in June 2009, there were waves of massive public demonstrations during the controversial presidential elections, officially won by conservative Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. A year earlier, in August 2008, Iranian photojournalist Kaveh Rostamkhani photographed what he refers to as Iran’s “Islamic Public”: Islamic Shiite culture, quite central in current Iranian society.

All pictures were taken in Qom, the religious center of Iran, except for the last shot which is from Zanjan, the capital of the Zanjan province located between Tehran and Tabriz.

The shrine of the Shiite “Saint” Fatima al Ma’sumeh, sister of the eighth Imam, Ali Ibn Musa al’Reza, illuminated at dusk
Pedestrians passing by a shop selling scarves and other religious items


Iranian clerics are bargaining the price with a merchant
A man performing the wudu, a ritual wash of the body which is done before prayer. This is from the court of the Jamkaran Mosque in the outskirts of Qom
People during the evening prayer next to the shrine of Fatima al Ma’sumeh (not in the picture)
During the late evening prayer in the court of the Jamkaran Mosque, a popular pilgrimage site for Shiite Muslims. It is believed that their Messiah Imam Mahdi will once appear there
A woman leaving the mosque of Emamzade Seyyed Ibrahim in Zanjan, on September 2nd, 2008 after the prayer at dusk.


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6 thoughts on “Islamic public of Iran

  1. These pictures are wonderful. I have not had the fortune just yet to visit this holy city, but I am desperately longing to because for many people like myself, religion is more of a way of life as opposed to a way of living if that makes sense. Great photography!

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