Art And Culture

Prominent Librarian Noushafarin Ansari Honored

Prominent Librarian Noushafarin Ansari HonoredProminent Librarian Noushafarin Ansari Honored

A ceremony was held in honor of the prominent librarian, educator, and manager Noushafarin Ansari by the Women’s Association of History Researchers (WAHR) at Iran’s National Library recently.

The event was attended by eminent author Mahdi Mohaghegh, Prof. Tofiq Sobhani, and well-known Iranist Jaleh Amouzgar and a large audience, IBNA reported.

Ansari stressed on reading good books, as she had done, and “that is why I have reached this status now.”

She noted that almost 16 years ago, six years after she retired, she was honored by the Society for the Appreciation of Cultural works and Dignitaries, and now she is most humbled for being invited to the ceremony represented by other notable figures, who should be honored as well.

“Let us work together and for one another. Let us be full-time students. As Iranian women, let us recognize our values and be grateful to our supporting husbands,” she said.

Ansari’s husband Mahdi Mohaghegh, talked about his shared interest with his wife. “This is the 52nd year of our life together. What is most interesting in our relation is that we come from two different cultural backgrounds.”

  Different Cultures

Pointing out that Ansari has been raised in a western culture and never studied in Iran, Mohaghegh said, “she got her diploma from England, her Bachelor’s degree from Geneva and received her higher education in Canada,  whereas, I studied in a theological school in Iran.”

Their common interest was the Islamic Iranian culture, he said. “Ansari has been interested in both these cultures since the beginning. She assisted me in my studies at the university, particularly with English language,” Mohaghegh added.

Mohaghegh stressed that children must get interested in reading books in childhood. “However, allotting hard books to primary school children is like feeding ‘kebab’ to babies.”

At the end of the ceremony, Ansari was presented a commendation plaque for her work in the field of culture.


Ansari was born in Simla, India, in 1939 to diplomat parents; therefore she was exposed to many languages and cultures in Asia and Europe. In 1958-1960 she studied librarianship in Geneva, a discipline she continued at McGill University and at the University of Toronto.

She worked as a librarian at the Delhi Public Library, and Tehran University Central library, and was Library Director at the Faculty of Literature and Humanities at Tehran University. In 1962 she married Mahdi Mohaghegh, a renowned Iranian university professor and scholar.

Ansari started teaching at the Faculty of Library and Information Science at Tehran University in 1968 and retired in 2000.

Early in her career she joined the Children’s Book Council of Iran, a non-profit organization, and was elected Secretary General in 1978 to date. She was awarded the Iran National Book Award in 1988, was a keynote speaker at the 28th IBBY (International Board on Books for Young People) Congress in Basel, Switzerland in 2002, and was nationally honored by the Society for the Appreciation of Cultural Works and Dignitaries in Tehran in 2004.

Ansari’s book ‘Introduction to the History of Muslim East’ was the winner of the top award of Iran’s Book of the Year.