Roya Hakakian’s First Book, "Journey from the Land of No," is Published

August 1, 2004

Iranian-American writer Roya Hakakian.

Roya Hakakian is an Iranian-born author and Persian poet. Hakakian was born in Tehran in 1966 to a Jewish family. In May 1985, when Roya was nineteen, she and her family fled the newly established, oppressive Iranian Islamic regime, seeking asylum in the United States. Hakakian is the author of two collections of Persian poetry, which have been featured in various anthologies around the world. Her acclaimed memoir, Journey from the Land of No: A Girlhood Caught in Revolutionary Iran, chronicles her experience growing up as a Jewish teenager in post-revolutionary Islamist Iran. Hakakian’s essays on Iranian issues, as well as other literary pieces, have been featured in publications such as the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and NPR’s All Things Considered, and she has also collaborated on programming for network television.

Hakakian’s literary work emerges from her identity as a Persian woman and her commitment to human rights. She is an editorial board member of World Affairs and a founding member of the Iran Human Rights Documentation Center and served on the board of Refugees International. Hakakian’s life story, her writing, and her activism have distinguished her as a featured speaker at many universities and prompted her appearance on numerous talk shows. University of California at Berkeley Professor Harry Kreisler describes her as “among the most important activists, academics, and journalists of her generation.” In 2008, Hakakian was awarded the Guggenheim Prize in nonfiction for her book The Assassins of the Turquoise Palace. Since being awarded a fellowship in 2014, she has been working on a new book at The Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. 


“About Roya Hakakian.”

“‘The Age of the Individual.’ Speaker: Roya Hakakian.” The Columbia University Center on Capitalism and Society.



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Jewish Women's Archive. "Roya Hakakian’s First Book, "Journey from the Land of No," is Published ." (Viewed on April 17, 2024) <>.