Graduate & Professional Studies

A reflection on the current state of Iran from Iranian graduate students at Marquette

Iranian graduate students at Marquette reflect on the current situation facing women in Iran. Due to safety concerns, their names have been removed from the article. Plans are underway for deeper discussions on this topic for the purposes of education, reflection and support. Please watch Marquette Today for more information.

As Iranian students, we are currently in great affliction and are facing a very stressful situation relating to our families and country.

On Sept. 13, 2022, the Iranian Morality Police detained 22-year-old Mahsa Amini for not adhering to the compulsory hijab. Later that day, she was taken to the hospital because of the injuries she had sustained under the custody of the Iranian Morality Police. She passed away on Sept. 16, 2022, in the intensive care unit due to brain injuries.

On Sept. 17, 2022, the death of Mahsa sparked protests throughout Iran calling for justice and fundamental human rights. The Iranian women, who have been discriminated against for more than 40 years under a dictator regime, became the front line of this movement.

On Oct. 1, 2022, people in over 150 cities around the world held a rally to stand with the protestors and show their support.

The fight for basic human rights and women rights in Iran has been ongoing since 1979, during which thousands of protestors have been killed or detained by the regime. However, regime suppression reached a new level on Oct. 2, 2022, when security forces locked down Sharif University of Technology, a top-ranked university in Iran, trapping students inside before they beat, shot and detained them.

Protests are ongoing, and since late September, many Iranian students outside of Iran have lost connection to their families, due to the regime restricting internet access and imposing extensive filtering on social media and other communication apps.

Many Iranian students at Marquette have had to jump through hoops to make a video call to talk to relatives back in Iran, most of which were unsuccessful.

We believe the Marquette University community is one the most inclusive and supportive academic communities, and all we want is for the voice of the Iranians be heard and understood. That could take many forms – by learning more about this situation, sharing the news on social media or by showing up to commemorative events.

In this fight, Iranian men and women are united. A chant sung throughout the country sums up its essence perfectly: “Women, Life, freedom.”

Say her name: #MahsaAmini

The Marquette Iranian graduate students who authored this reflection invite anyone who would like to show their support for women’s rights in Iran to sign this Amnesty International petition.