Iran: Of Votes & Veils

In 1936, Reza Shah ordered the women of Iran to abandon their veils, but over the years few other barriers to women's equality have fallen. Two months ago, Reza's son, Shah Mohammed Reza Pahlevi, issued a decree that had the effect of giving 2,000,000 women the right to vote and run for provincial and town assemblies. The right was implied, but no less effective for it. "Except for the mentally deranged or those with criminal records," stated the decree, "every Iranian individual has the right to vote and be elected."

It seemed a...

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