The Position of Persian Language and Literature in Iran of Safavid Age and Its Relation to Formal and National Language
This article studies the position of Persian language and literature during Safavid age emphasizing on social functions of language and expressing the existence of formal and national languages throughout pre-modern ages. This scan signifies from several dimensions. First: its relation to foundation of the first national government in Iran of Islamic age and analyzing its attitude toward the formal and national language phenomena as a part of Iranians national Identity. Second: diversification of proposed views about the position of Persian language and literature during the Safavid age. It seems that these views – which often interject the decadence, weakness and isolation of the Persian literature and language at that time – are according to the view which has been formed maliciously during Qajar age rather than to be according to scientific documents.
Referring to the firsthand resources of Safavid age, this article is proposed within two parts: In the first part, after mentioning some samples of formal and national language during pre-modern ages, we have studied the position of the Persian language in that age as the colloquial language of the majority of Iranian people, as the formal language of the governance and documents of Safavid government, as the educational language of the formal schools, as the writing language of literal and general works and as the language of normal calligraphy in the society. In the second part, analyzing the main viewpoints around the Persian language of Safavid age, we have accounted the general complaints, related to the Qajar government and theorizers bound to Qajar court which had been formed maliciously.
In another part we have debated the complaints against the prevailing literary style at that time and generalizing a case tangling of King Tahmasb with the poets. The other debate is about a part of contemporary intellectualism criticizing religious approaches of the Safavid government.
Therefore objecting the precise recognizing the Persian literature and language at the Safavid age, it has been suggested to perform scientific research devoid of value orientation and based on reference to the firsthand documents and works of that time rather than following the general formed viewpoint.
Persian language and literature, Safavid age, formal language, national language
This article has been written by Hossein Gudarzi Ph.D. (Assistant professor of Institute for Social and Cultural Studies)