What is HOMANITY
HOMANITY is a compilation album featuring prominent Iranian artists to raise awareness about the censorship and persecution of artists in Iran. Music, although an integral part of Iranian culture, is treated by the government of the Republic of Iran as inherently corrupting and is strictly censored and can be punishable by imprisonment and even torture.
In response, HOMANITY fights back against repressive regimes by showcasing censored art and artists that have dedicated their lives to standing up for freedom of expression and for a world where artists of every gender, color, religion, and sexual orientation can produce their music without fear.
What does HOMANITY mean?
HOMANITY, evokes humanity and is derived from the word, HOMA, in Persian. HOMA is the benevolent and powerful phoenix that appears in Iranian mythology saving and sheltering heroes. HOMA is also a symbol unity, in one tale representing the reflection of a flock of birds which journeyed in the skies in search of the phoenix but discovered their power as a flock.
What is underground music?
Art long has been a force for social change, -- and music often is the catalyst. In recent times, popular music has raised awareness about human rights issues far away from Western audiences. Peter Gabriel released the hit single Biko in 1980, calling attention to the unjust and racist Apartheid regime in South Africa. A coalition of artists created “We Are the World” in 1985, a song that raised awareness and generated funds to alleviate famine in Ethiopia. In 2015, Live8 brought together musicians around the issue of poverty in Africa and launched a global movement to inspire world governments to pursue debt relief.
Why is there an Underground Music Scene in Iran?
In 1979, the leaders of the Iranian Revolution sought to end the influence of increasingly Westernized music in Iran. As a result, all music, aside from government-approved propaganda music, was banned. In an instant, female artists were banned from performing in public and artistic expression through music became a crime.
However, the Iranian people would not be silenced. It was then that the underground music scene began growing its roots in secret. Through underground concerts, illegal sale of music in taxi cabs, and eventually, with the introduction of the internet, digital recordings of tracks, Iranian artists kept the rich history of Iranian music alive and well, even at the expense of their own lives and liberty.
Today, music produced in Iran is widely popular throughout the Middle East, both for its unique sound and its socially conscious messaging. Although these messages cannot ring out over the streets of Tehran, they have inspired and engaged a new generation of activists and artists, not just in Iran, but all around the world.
Who is working on HOMANITY?
HOMANITY is a collaboration between Crowdsourcing Human Rights and the Democracy Council, which are both US-based nonprofit organizations with 501c3 status. Crowdsourcing Human Rights and the Democracy Council have years of experience supporting human rights and the artists of the underground music scene in Iran.
How does HOMANITY support human rights?
By spreading the music of Iran, we can elevate socially conscious messaging and promote civic discourse while at the same time building awareness of the ongoing human rights crisis in Iran. By shedding a spotlight on the restrictions of speech and creative expression in Iran, we can engage Western audiences and create human connections between those who suffer in Iran and people around the world who love art and who cherish the freedom of expression.
Are there any legal concerns with working in Iran?
No, this project is fully compliant with all US and international law.
How can I get involved?
Follow HOMANITY Music on Twitter and Instagram to stay tuned for album updates and share the hashtag #HOMANITYmusic in support of freedom of expression around the world.
Give a voice to the repressed artists in Iran and anywhere in the world by sending a message of solidarity. Post videos or messages of support using the hashtag #HOMANITYmusic, and we’ll share your messages with audiences around the world.
Support artists by donating to HOMANITY and Crowdsourcing Human Rights. All donations directly contribute to the creation, mixing, and production of HOMANITY.
For more information on how you or your organization can get involved Contact Us
Are donations to Homanity tax deductible?
Yes! Homanity is run by Crowdsourcing Human Rights, a US-based nonprofit organization with 501(c)(3) status and if fully deductible for tax purposes.