New Internationalist

The Stoning of Soraya M

November 2010

Directed by Cyrus Nowrasteh

The story, about a scheming psychotic husband using his influence to falsely condemn his wife as an adulterer, is banal. The consequence, her stoning to death, is sickening.

Based on the personal testimony of Soraya M’s aunt, smuggled out of Iran, it builds inexorably to her public execution. Yet even more disturbing than that, because it’s so familiar and everyday, is the petty mindset, the connivance, collusion and deference, that set aside this woman’s life. The title alone, open about where it’s heading, will deter many, but, although it is not a great film, it is a heartfelt condemnation of judicial execution and the treatment of women as chattels. Try to see it.

Front cover of New Internationalist magazine, issue 437 This column was published in the November 2010 issue of New Internationalist. To read more, buy this issue or subscribe.

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