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Chapter 6 identifies the writings of enslaving families and their descendants as its own specific narrative genre that blurs experiences of enslavement with ideals of benevolence divorced from racist attitudes. This chapter argues that this particular historical genre of distortion is overrepresented in Iranian history in both scholarly and popular settings. Drawing on Trouillot’s four phases of history-making, this chapter defines the genre of distortion as one that emphasizes a shared love between the enslaver and the enslaved, denies the full extent of one’s enslavement, and asserts an intimacy between enslaver and enslaved that outsiders cannot be expected to understand. This chapter argues that the descendants of the enslavers frame their ancestors as having been prophetically infallible and incapable of wronging their enslaved.

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