Volume 47, Number 16 - June 14, 2010

About the Reporter

Jose Brown

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An inspiring memoir of endurance

By Jose Brown

Picture of book cover
Roxana Saberi writes a brutally honest account of her experience as a prisoner.

On Jan. 31, 2009 Roxana Saberi was forced from her Tehran apartment and accused of espionage by Iranian Intelligence agents.

In her first book, Between Two Worlds: My Life and Captivity in Iran, Saberi, an Iranian-American journalist, recounts the horrifying 100 days she spent as a prisoner.

When Saberi traveled to her father’s home country, Iran, her goal was to enlighten westerners on Iran’s society and culture.

She conducted interviews with Iranians ranging from political figures to local citizens, but she had no idea that she was under the watchful eye of Iran’s Intelligence Agency.

Then everything changed. When Saberi was finishing her research and making arrangements to return to the United States, she was arrested. Her captors accused her of spying for the U.S. government, specifically the CIA.

They informed her that unless she confessed to being a spy, she would be taken to Evin Prison, an institution that houses political prisoners. The prison has a reputation of using torture to force confessions.

In her book, Saberi writes a brutally honest account of her experience as a prisoner. She uses vivid insight to illustrate the spiritual and psychological battles she faced. Saberi said she was told that her only passage to freedom rested on a videotaped confession to espionage and her agreement to become a spy for the Iranian Intelligence Agency by providing information on close friends.

Although Saberi eventually gave in and confessed, she recanted her confession after meeting several of her female inmates, who inspired her through their faith and resolve.

The pages of Between Two Worlds are dripping with insight into Iran’s political and social atmosphere, as well as advice to journalists who aspire to be foreign correspondents.

This book is a must-read for anyone majoring in journalism or dreaming of working abroad.

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