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Pioneering Iranian Writer Simin Daneshvar Dies

Simin Daneshvar in 2007

Simin Daneshvar in 2007

Pioneering Iranian novelist and translator Simin Daneshvar has died in Tehran at the age of 90.

Daneshvar, the first head of the Iranian Writers Association, was also the first woman to publish a novel in her native country.

There was no cause of death given, although RFE/RL's Radio Farda reported that she had battled a lengthy illness.

Her most successful and best-selling novel, 1969's “Savushun" ("Mourners of Siyavash"), about a family during the World War II occupation of Iran by the Allied Forces, has been translated into 17 languages. describes it as the best-selling Iranian novel of all time.

Many Iranian intellectuals regard her as one of that country's greatest novelists.