Social Media in Iran

Politics and Society after 2009

Edited by David M. Faris & Babak Rahimi

Subjects: Internet, Political Communication, Democratization, Middle East Studies
Paperback : 9781438458823, 334 pages, July 2016
Hardcover : 9781438458830, 334 pages, December 2015

Alternative formats available from:

Table of contents

David M. Faris and Babak Rahimi
Part I. Societal
1. Facebook Iran: Social Capital and the Iranian Social Media
Jari Eloranta, Hossein Kermani, and Babak Rahimi
2. Gender Roles in the Social Media World of Iranian Women
Elham Gheytanchi
3. The Role of Social Media in the Lives of Gay Iranians
Abouzar Nasirzadeh
4. Disabled Iranians on Social Media: Reflections on the Empowering Experiences of the Iranian PWDs in the Blogosphere
Kobra Elahifar
Part II. Politics
5. The Politics of Online Journalism in Iran
Marcus Michaelsen
6. The Persian Blogosphere in Dissent
Arash Falasiri and Nazanin Ghanavizi

7. The Politics and Anti-Politics of Facebook in Context of the Iranian 2009 Presidential Elections and Beyond
Mohammad Sadeghi Esfahlani
8. Trans-spatial Public Action: The Geography of Iranian Post-Election Protests in the Age of Web 2. 0
Reza Masoudi Nejad
9. Balatarin: Gatekeepers and the Politics of a Persian Social Media Site
Babak Rahimi and Nima Rassooli
10. Architectures of Control and Mobilization in Egypt and Iran
David M. Faris
11. Social Media and the Islamic Republic
Niki Akhavan
12. Political Memory and Social Media: The Case of Neda
Samira Rajabi
Part III. Culture
13. Iranian Cinema and Social Media
Michelle Langford

14. The Online Avant-Garde: Iranian Video Art and Its Technological Rebellion
Staci Gem Scheiwiller

First comprehensive account of how the Internet has impacted life in Iran.


Social Media in Iran is the first book to tell the complex story of how and why the Iranian people—including women, homosexuals, dissidents, artists, and even state actors—use social media technology, and in doing so create a contentious environment wherein new identities and realities are constructed. Drawing together emerging and established scholars in communication, culture, and media studies, this volume considers the role of social media in Iranian society, particularly the time during and after the controversial 2009 presidential election, a watershed moment in the postrevolutionary history of Iran. While regional specialists may find studies on specific themes useful, the aim of this volume is to provide broad narratives of actor-based conceptions of media technology, an approach that focuses on the experiential and social networking processes of digital practices in the information era extended beyond cultural specificities. Students and scholars of regional and media studies will find this volume rich with empirical and theoretical insights on the subject of how technologies shape political and everyday life.

David M. Faris is Chair of the Department of Political Science and Public Administration at Roosevelt University and the author of Dissent and Revolution in a Digital Age: Social Media, Blogging and Activism in Egypt. Babak Rahimi is Associate Professor of Communication, Culture, and Religion at the University of California, San Diego. He is the author of Theater State and the Formation of Early Modern Public Sphere in Iran: Studies on Safavid Muharram Rituals, 1590–1641 CE.


"As an introduction to contemporary Iranian sociotechnical movements, the volume is an excellent guide for even novice scholars hoping to gain a better understanding of the region. " — CHOICE

"…will prove a welcome and significant acquisition for academic library Middle Eastern Studies and Media Studies collections in general, and Contemporary Iranian Studies supplement reading lists in particular. " — Midwest Book Review