The Second Round of Cultural Dialogue between Iran and Europe

In the second round of cultural dialogue between Iran and Italy the head of the Islamic Culture and Relations Organization stated: "There is a bright future in the post-cultural dialogue between Iran and Italy". According to the Public Relations of Islamic Culture and Relations Organization, the second round of cultural dialogue between Iran and Europe (Italy) was started this morning (Thursday, May 4) in Negarestan Garden Museum, the University of Tehran with the topic of "The Role of Art in the Development of Academic and Cultural Cooperation" with the contribution of the University of Tehran and the Institute of Treccani Enciclopedia. In this meeting, expressing satisfaction for holding the second round of cultural dialogue between Iran and Italy, Dr. Ebrahimi Torkaman stated that coinciding with Tehran International Book Fair (TIBF) and the selection of Italy as the special guest of honor with the title of "Timeless Beauty" indicate the cultural potentials and capabilities in the Islamic Republic of Iran and Italy and the strong determination of the authorities and scholars of both countries for the development of cultural relations. Emphasizing on the point that Iran and Italy enjoy high cultural capabilities for cultural proximity, the head of the Islamic Culture and Relations Organization stated: "As in the first round of cultural dialogue in the Institute of Treccani Enciclopedia was pointed out, both countries enjoy high cultural capabilities for cultural interaction. In fact, many of the conflicts and challenges in todays world have cultural roots". The member of the Supreme Council of Cultural Revolution added: "Cultural dialogue will provide an opportunity for people to introduce their cultures and cultural elements and components directly and more accurately and experience tolerance and open-mindedness in the acceptance of differences and cultural diversity away from the media noise". The Need for Cooperation between Italy and Iran in Cultural and Art Areas Referring to the ancient cultural background of Iran and Italy, he stated: "Iran and Italy have ancient and valuable cultural background and enjoy very high cultural capabilities. Hence, it is essential that Iran and Italy cooperate with each other in cultural and art areas". Dr. Ebrahimi Torkaman also emphasized: "These two cultures have affected each other so much. Iran has always attracted the attention of scholars, intellectuals, researchers and historians as one of the most influential civilizations of the world, a place in which old religions were originated, a place in which the first charter of human rights was composed and issued, one of the main birthplaces of and the most complete ancient scripts, ancient traditions, unique art and architecture in ancient times, and finally the birthplace of several thousand years culture". He continued: "Italy is also one of the richest countries in terms of culture and history and has always been known as a country with creative people in the world and this is particularly significant in the field of art and all of its categories". Acknowledging that Iranian art has had many effects on European and Italian art, the head of the Islamic Culture and Relations Organization stated: "Sasanian art was prevailed in a large part of the civilized world at that time and its manifestation was a model for the artists in many parts of the world. The effect of Italian literature on Iranian works is seen only after twentieth century, thats why very limited Italian works were translated to Persian. However, the effect of the Divine Comedy is clear on Javid Nama written by Muhammad Iqbal". Dr. Ebrahimi Torkaman also stated that the relations between the Islamic Republic of Iran and Italy have rich historical, cultural and civilizational backgrounds that were established since old times and were very important and effective in promoting bilateral relations in all ages. The member of the Supreme Council of Cultural Revolution reminded: "Cultural interactions between Iran and Italy were continued in the years after the Islamic revolution and both countries have paid special attention to academic, cultural and archaeological cooperation". The head of the Islamic Culture and Relations Organization emphasized: "Given the historical and cultural background of Iran and Italy, the introduction of the culture of these two countries to each other is very important as it will improve and strengthen bilateral political and cultural relations between the two countries through cultural communication and political dialogue after nuclear deal". Stating that cultural activities are the base of other measures in relations between two countries, he added: "These cultural communication and similarities are the main capital of the two countries that have always been continued throughout history". Emphasis on the Development of Cultural Relations In this meeting, Dr. Ebrahimi Torkaman also stated: "Intercultural dialogue helps the better understanding and as a result the introduction of cultural elements and components of the two countries to each other, through which we can strive to promote peace in the international arena by the development of cultural relations between Iran and Italy". Acknowledging that cultural identity can play an important role in bringing the countries together, he stated: "We believe that culture can be turned into a universal language through cultural dialogue as the process of globalization has revealed the necessity of intercultural communication more than ever". Referring to the current round of cultural dialogue, the head of the Islamic Culture and Relations Organization said: "As art is the topic of this round of cultural dialogue, given the history and long-standing cooperation between the two countries in this regard a common definition of these issues can be obtained and a clear path of dialogue can be followed by this common definition". He also stated: "As humans are created from the same source and their creator is one and they are of the same nature, they have common feelings that even time and space distance is not able to destroy it. Manuscripts as written capital of any civilization and culture are among the tools that are effective in written communication and transmission of culture and art to future generations". Manuscripts as Cultural Heritage of Nations In the meeting, Dr. Ebrahimi Torkaman also stated that the emergence of manuscripts is considered the cultural heritage of nations in which their cultural identity can be found. Referring to different dimensions of manuscripts, he said: "Different dimensions of manuscripts such as academic, cultural, art, ethical, mystical and spiritual dimensions have a crucial role in communication and dialogue; especially the artistic dimension of manuscripts is very attractive and varied, as art is the common language of cultures and is universal and has various functions. In fact, the cultural role of manuscripts is what all nations are looking for and is of great importance to them". Referring to Iranology and Persian language and literature, the member of the Supreme Council of Cultural Revolution stated: "Both Iran and Italy have a long history on Iranology and Persian language and literature. For example, the departments of Persian language and literature are established in five prestigious universities in Italy. In addition, recently, the compulsory unit for learning Persian language has been considered for students in the universities of Palermo and Cagliari and it should be noted that the Italian language is being taught in some universities of Iran". He continued: "Given all of the above issues, it should be emphasized on the point that all strategies and programs represented in these dialogues by official institutions and organizations of both countries should come into force and become operationalized. Given that this round of cultural dialogue is being held along with the 30th Tehran International Book Fair in which Italy is the guest of honor, it is suggested that Iran be the guest of honor in one of the prestigious international book fairs in Italy, such as Bologna Childrens Book Fair". The head of the Islamic Culture and Relations Organization noted: "Given the cultural interactions and commonalities, a bright future can be expected between the two countries following the cultural dialogues. I hope the cultural dialogue can bring the two nations closer together more than ever; it is obvious that the outcome of these dialogues and transferring them to the elite and the people of the two countries can resolve the lack of knowledge about each other from the mind of community". At the end of his speech, appreciating the organizers of this round of cultural dialogue, Dr. Ebrahimi Torkaman expressed hope that cultural dialogue between Iran and Italy be continued and the approvals come into force and become operationalized and have positive and constructive results for the continuation and development of cultural relations between the two countries. According to this report, in this one-day meeting, Mahmoud Nili Ahmadabadi, the president of University of Tehran, and Vincenzo Amendola, the Italian Deputy Foreign Minister were present and delivered a speech. In addition, in the main part of the meeting, Seyed Ahmad Reza Khezri, Hossein Salimi, Shahin Heydari, Hassan Bolkhari Ghehi and Homayoun Hemmati from Iran and Homayoun Hemmati, and Carlo Cereti, Fabio Grassi, Adriano Valerio Russi, Massimo Papa and Claudio Loyacono from Italy were present and delivered a speech. It is noteworthy that the first round of cultural dialogue between Iran and Europe was held on Thursday, November 24, 2016 in Rome, Italy, with the contribution of the Islamic Culture and Relations Organization and it was hosted by the Institute of Treccani Enciclopedia.