عنوان مقاله [English]
Introduction: The main objective of this article is to examine the function of the audiocassette in the state of Iranian listening culture in the first decade after the triumph of the Islamic Revolution in 1978-79. The Islamic Revolution in Iran was indeed a cultural revolution aimed at establishing an Islamic Shiite discourse as a new political discourse against the pre-revolutionary, Westernized Pahlavi political system. Thus, cleansing Iranian culture of the Western lifestyle was the most important political project of the newborn Islamic government. One of the most problematic aspects of this cultural technique was pop music and the use of recorded audio tapes of pop music. Examining the role of pop music on audiocassettes opens a new perspective on the role of cultural assets in post-revolutionary Iranian culture.
Method: To investigate the role of audiocassettes, we conducted in-depth interviews with seven musicians who experienced their adolescence and youth in the 1980s and with sellers of audiocassettes from that period. Finally, interview data were coded and categorized through thematic analysis.
Findings: The Iranian Islamic state is a comprehensive political program to control all aspects of Iranian daily life in order to eliminate and exclude all evil situations that promote evil deeds. Evil deeds are so harmful that they divert the attention of Muslims from God. For a Shi'a Muslim, all of life must be compatible with the holy laws of Islam. Thus, Iranian life after the revolution is holy because it obeys the holy Islamic rules, while the holy Islamic rules became holy laws. In the first decade of the Iranian Islamic state, the most undeniable feature of Iranian Islamic society was loyalty to the sacred Islamic laws, and an ideal Shiite subjectivity voluntarily sacrificed its life for political Islamic ideals. The Iranian Islamic state expected the ideal Shiite subjects to be willing to live a revolutionary lifestyle that was different from that of the pre-revolutionary period. Unlike the pre-revolutionary Iranian Western consumer lifestyle, the post-revolutionary lifestyle is supposed to resist the material world that diverts the Shiite subject's attention from the Islamic God, and therefore the luxury lifestyle had to be banned as a Western lifestyle. This was a political-cultural policy since the early years of the Islamic state. For the Islamic state, passions and temptations were aspects of the material world that were supported by Western culture. Therefore, the project of Iranian Islamic cultural engineering was to censor Western cultural and artistic products in order to create Islamic cultural values. Music was one of the most important Westernized cultural fields at that time, which had to be purified from the characteristics of pre-revolutionary popular music because it did not support Islamic values. In popular culture, people maintained their pre-revolutionary listening habits by reproducing and distributing recorded pop music on audiocassettes, and a black market formed. The audiocassette as an object had a power to continue the illegal flow of pre-revolutionary pop music.
Conclusion: The conclusion is that the audiocassettes enabled different and plural listening positions for Iranian post-revolutionary listening culture, and the audiocassette was considered as an evil object for Iranian Islamic revolutionary culture.