Hafez is by common consent the zenith of Persian lyrics. Due to little reliable information on his life there has always been an air of mystery surrounding his person and his Divan. The ghazal, his favorite poetical style, has continued to be the most important form of lyrics in Persian literature. Generations of Persian-speaking poets have turned to him as a source of inspiration; none of them, however, has ever been able to match the depth of his thoughts and the elegance of his language. Almost anyone who reads his poems will be taken captive by the delicious music of his songs and charming imagery. Sir William Jones once (1768) chanted, Hafiz is most assuredly a poet worthy to sup with gods. In the course of centuries numerous translations, adaptations and imitations from Hafez have appeared the world over. He has inspired poets, philosophers and composers such as Goethe, Emerson and Szymanowski. The present book is intended to give readers a detailed look at the life and poetry of this celebrated Persian lyric poet and to answer the question how he became known to the Western world. It also informs in a detailed and vivid way about the western perception of Hafez and his poetry.
The author Prof. Nasser Kanani has lectured at M.I.T., University of Florida and Sakarya University in Turkey. He has received various awards. His name is mentioned in Kürschner’s Calendar of German Scholars. Since 2008 every two years three Iranian scientists are awarded the Prof. Kanani Prize for environmentalism.