photo by Amirmoayad Bavand (Tehran)
In 2008, after the reports of the newspapers and internet magazines about Arastou’s sex reassignment surgery, many transsexuals from all over Iran contacted him by any means and asked him for help.
Not only did Arastou become a distinguished fellow in theatre and cinema but also the most prominent person in the transsexual‘s society of Iran.
During the years after surgery, Arastou devoted much time to transsexuals for guiding them because no organization supported them or took any step in line with social awareness on this issue; therefore, the society didn’t accept them.
Regarding the experiences he gained during 40 years of thinking, lots of research as well as his familiarity with transsexual’s society, Arastou tried in any way to help them gain their real body through the most appropriate way.
The more the time passed, the more he saw himself in a larger society of this minority. He heard numerous stories from transsexuals and more and more people contacted him.
Finally, at the beginning of 2015, he decided to hold a workshop called “self-cognition workshop” so that transsexuals could participate in them to use his experiences in order to achieve a single voice and make an effort to aware the society to accept this group of the society in a form of a group.
Saman believes that drama therapy is one of the effective methods for treating the inner turmoil. In “self-cognition workshops”, he uses his own drama therapy techniques and they have been successful. He has been inspired by Jean-Paul Sartre and Albert Camus in practices of those techniques.
From the beginning of 2015 until now, these workshops are being held weekly in five-hour sessions unceasingly and until 2016, more than 150 transsexuals have participated in those workshops.
Due to not supporting by governmental and non-governmental organizations, Arastou’s workshops are free and all the costs are on his shoulders.