Persian Voices: Insatiable Land Hunger

[Reza Shah’s] insatiable land hunger is reaching such a point that it will soon be permissible to wonder why His Imperial Majesty does not, without more ado, register the whole of Persia in his own name.


The Iron Fist of Reza Shah


Editor’s Note: Iran’s landed elite represent one of the pillars of power through much of Iran’s history. After the 1908-1909 Civil War in Iran, land registration and the creation of title deeds brought about a new landed aristocracy which held the political power of the parliament. For the Pahlavi Dynasty of Reza Shah and Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, land reform became a brutal business to contain the power of the landed elite. One of the first examples of this was the erasure of the family name, Sepahsālār-e Azam-e Tonekāboni, who once served as Prime Minister.