the late iranian intellectual jalaal aal-e ahmad had once diagnosed a peculiar disease afflicting his countrymen.*

the epidemic seems to have spread eastwards and now the virulent strain has fully struck us. here it seems to have mutated and branched into two strains that act and counteract in opposing ways -both the talib and the technocrat suffer from it. it has afflicted some with a ceaseless passion and devotion for the west and all things western, and inspired others with a mania of hatred against it. the talib suffers from acute westoxification (though he will be loathe to admit to it, all this thoughts and deeds -the meaning of his life- are a reaction to the west), and the poor technocrat is simply west-whipped (spineless, and the very definition of a tragic sight as he struggles with his english.)

in between are left the few who have no idea how the virus spread so suddenly and will it ever be over and will life ever get back to normal. will we ever be able to stop acting in a reactionary manner? will our public lives ever stop to be a constant reaction -either positive or negative- to the symptoms of occidentosis?

غربزده گی


~ by safrang on July 22, 2008.

5 Responses to “occidentosis”

  1. I liked this piece so much , and you know why. By the way, is your reference to “he” because the trend you are talking about is more pivoted around men in our part of the world, or is it because you , like the rest of us, are used to get unconsciously primed by a “he” image, when thinking of any huge issue?

  2. dear hatif –


    because women in afghanistan have way more integrity than its men, and historically (going all the way back to shir ali khan and the like, if you want) afghan men have generally lacked spine when it comes to dealing with outsiders/westerners.

    also patriarchy is so deeply rooted in our language (all of mankind’s -womankind?- languages that we get, yes, unconsciously primed by a man’s image when dealing with any issue of importance…

  3. For a second this disease you were referring to was Islam.

  4. For a second, I thought this disease you were referring to was Islam.

  5. omg, delete that first comment

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