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Ghazal Omid

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Ghazal Omid
Ghazal Omid
Omid in 2013
BornAbadan, Iran
OccupationAuthor, legal scholar
Notable worksLiving In Hell

Ghazal Omid (Persian غزل امید‏[citation needed]) is an Iranian-Canadian author. She wrote an autobiographical work entitled Living In Hell: A True Odyssey of a Woman's Struggle in Islamic Iran Against Personal and Political Forces. She is known in the United States as an advocate for human rights and women's rights and is also a Shi'a legal scholar.[1]

Personal life

Omid at age 5

Omid was born in Abadan, Iran.[2] Her father was a multi-millionaire who abandoned the family and sought refuge in the United States when she was a child.[3] She grew up in Isfahan and was 8 years old when the Shah of Iran was overthrown by the Ayatollah Khomeini.[4] Omid is a practicing Muslim and has made the religious pilgrimage to Mecca.[2] In 1995, she fled Iran and moved to Canada.[2] In 2008, she moved to Washington DC.[5]


Omid's autobiography, Living In Hell, is critical of Iran and the human rights abuses occurring there. Because of this, her book's website has been the focus of online abuse and threats from computer users in Iran, Turkey and Pakistan.[6] Omid has criticized Iran for using books to teach martyrdom to children.[7][8] She also wants Iranian books to stop referring to the United States as the "Great Satan".[7][9] Omid is concerned that these books may be turning children into "ticking bombs".[7][10]

Currently, Omid is the Executive Director for Iran & Its, a US-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization focused on advocating for the improvement of life in Iran.[11] In 2014 she worked to bring children burned in a school fire in Iran to the US for medical treatment.[12]


  • Living In Hell: A True Odyssey of a Woman's Struggle in Islamic Iran Against Personal and Political Forces (2005) Park Avenue Publishers ISBN 978-0-9759683-0-7 OCLC 60764503
  • Mr. Nightingale: A story adapted from the life of an Iranian child. 2012. ISBN 9781479313075. OCLC 876333397.
  • Maryam and Mr. Rabbi, Part I: Based on a true story about a Muslim and a Jewish family from Iran. 2015. ISBN 978-1519340245.
  • Maryam and Mr. Rabbi, Part II: Based on a true story about a Muslim and a Jewish family from Iran. 2015. ISBN 978-1519498250.


  1. ^ Trey, Popp (2006). "After the Genome". Science & Spirit. Dupont Circle Washington, D.C: Heldref Publications. 17 (5): 13–20. doi:10.3200/SSPT.17.5.13-20. OCLC 66569013.
  2. ^ a b c Heller, Aron (2 August 2005). "Executions a sad reminder of home for Iranian author". Ottawa Citizen. Ottawa, Ontario, Canada: James Orban. AP. p. A7. ISSN 0839-3222. OCLC 60621316.
  3. ^ "Ghazil Omid, who was abused as a child in Iran A regime of oppression But speaker says Iranian people are kindhearted". The Beacon. Acton, MA: Beacon Communications Corp. 19 October 2006. ISSN 0744-7930. OCLC 8560666.
  4. ^ Wigod, Rebecca (6 August 2005). "Life in Iran was life in hell, says local author". The Vancouver Sun. Vancouver, British Columbia: Kevin D. Bent. ISSN 0832-1299. OCLC 51786825.
  5. ^ "Interview with Ghazal Omid". Retrieved 2 July 2012.
  6. ^ Bunt, Gary R. (2009). iMuslims: rewiring the house of Islam (illustrated ed.). UNC Press. p. 74. ISBN 978-0-8078-5966-7. OCLC 245536728. Retrieved 8 October 2010.
  7. ^ a b c Wagner, Thomas (8 February 2007). "Study says Iran textbooks urge martyrdom". The Boston Globe. Boston, Massachusetts: Christopher M. Mayer. ISSN 0743-1791. OCLC 1536853. Archived from the original on 25 August 2007. Retrieved 8 October 2010.
  8. ^ "Iranian Books Tell Students To Be 'martyrs,' Study Says". The Island Packet. Bluffton, South Carolina: Sara Johnson Borton. AP. 9 February 2007. p. 8. ISSN 0746-4886. OCLC 10076001. Retrieved 8 October 2010.
  9. ^ "Monday Briefing". Amarillo Globe-News. Amarillo, Texas: Les Simpson. AP. 12 February 2007. OCLC 46838358. Archived from the original on 15 February 2011. Retrieved 8 October 2010.
  10. ^ "Study says Iran's texts breed hate toward West". Houston Chronicle. Houston, Texas: Jack Sweeney. AP. 9 February 2007. ISSN 1074-7109. OCLC 1607806.
  11. ^ "Iran & Its home page". Iran & Its Retrieved 30 May 2011.
  12. ^ Dobbyn, Christine (17 July 2014). "Activist trying to bring burned Iranian children to Shriners Hospital for Children-Galveston for treatment". ABC News.

External links