A nostalgia: the days that hearts were warmer around Korsi
a work from All That Is Solid Melts Into Air series
by Farshido Shirin*
Declaim: Forough & Farzaneh Larimian
*Farshido in collaboration with Shirin Attar
d) Korsi is a device that Iranians used to have in their houses to get warm in winters. It is a table with low height, with a blanket on and a heater under it. The heat came from charcoal and later electricity. After the 80s korsi disappeared from the houses gradually and it was substituted by radiators. Iranians used to sit or lie down under korsi at cold nights and celebrate at special nights like Yalda which is the longest night of the year. All the members of family and maybe some relatives sat around the korsi, read Hafez, Ferdowsi’s Shahnameh. Grandparents told their stories while others ate fruits and nuts. Korsi had different advantages, one of them was the pleasant family gatherings that are rare nowadays. We can’t see korsi in city life today but it still exists in cold rural areas of the country. If we go to countryside in winter we can see it in most houses and we feel nostalgic. It reminds us the gatherings with friends and relatives, Hafez’s poems, grandparents’ stories, love and romance memories that young girls and boys who were in love had from sitting around or lying under korsi. Even when children who have not had such experience and don’t remember seeing korsi at their houses go to country cottages and see korsi sit around it and play and you can see the way they are attached to it. It is right that korsi doesn’t have the role it used to have in our lives in the past but it hasn’t disappeared completely and it has changed into a sign of nostalgia with cultural or artistic aspects that appreciate some of the old traditions of Iranians’ lives.