Older people will remember a vastly different impression of Iran though, the Iran from before the Islamic Revolution. There are a large number of pictures and videos out there that show a radically different country from the one today (some might be from the 1960s BTW) so I’ve gathered a few of them together.
Restrictions on women were more severe in the early days of the Islamic Republic. Females who didn't cover all parts of their body, except hands and face, were subject to punishment of up to seventy lashes or sixty days imprisonment. Women were encouraged to stay at home and not seek a job until the Iran-Iraq War started and women's employment was needed
Iranian law still favors men, but women in that country are more educated and have a more visible role in life than in many other Islamic countries, such as Saudi Arabia. And things are getting better, according to the first woman to serve as a cabinet secretary in that country.
But to see that, Massoumeh Ebtekar told TODAY co-host Matt Lauer, Westerners need to get over their obsession with the hijab, the head scarf that Iranian women are required to wear by law.
“Hijab is a kind of social act,” Ebtekar said in a live interview conducted in Tehran, the Iranian capital. “I don’t think it is a big issue for women, because there are a lot of issues for women that are so important, and hijab is not a big thing.”